Social media is unavoidable, it has become such a big part of our lives. In one way, it is a wonderful way to connect to family and friends from all over the world, keeping them up to date with our lives, and watching theirs from afar as well.
On the other hand, social media can be a dangerous place. We were always told not to trust strangers on the internet, and now strangers have an open-view of our lives and our families.
As a parent, you might feel torn between sharing photos of your children online for family and friends to see and protecting your children from any harm or risks that might come from their photos or stories being online.
Here are some things to consider when posting about your child on social media:
Respecting Their Privacy
Yes, the argument is that they are children and do not understand these things, and while your child might not care for what you share about them on social media now, they will become more aware as they grow older.
At around 5 years old, children become more aware of themselves, and about how the world might see them. They could become embarrassed about the things you post regarding them on social media.
In a way, your child might feel like they do not have ownership of their own bodies. At a young age, they cannot argue with you for posting bath time photos online. However, it is best to think about how they would feel about it at a later stage.
Risk Of Identity Theft
Digital kidnapping, or identity theft, is happening more often than you think. This is when someone takes a photo of someone else on social media and claims it as their own.
When it comes to children, someone might take the photos you post of your child on social media, and post it as their own child, with a new name and identity.
There are also some disturbing trends, such as baby role-playing. This is when a photo is taken from social media, and alongside it, there are false details about the child. Sometimes, people act as this child and respond to comments as though they are the child.
These sites are usually created by those who want to be parents and those who want to act like kids. Unfortunately, the photos have to come from somewhere.
Oversharing Of Information
We live in a scary world. While the people you interact with on social media are people you trust, there are always lurkers in the background.
You need to be so careful not to include indicators of where your child goes to school, where they live, or where they play when posting online. Even hints to their routine might give an unsavoury character insight into your child’s life.
Families who are going through custody disputes, or who are trying to get away from domestic violence situations need to be especially mindful of this.
Social media can be a great place to share and interact with family and friends, but it is not without its dangers. Be smart, and be mindful of what you post online.