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letting my kids have Facebook?

(145 Posts)
MummaEss Fri 05-Jul-13 20:42:08

I know this might be a bit controversial but I just want to know any rational arguments against kids having a facebook account.

My girls have had accounts from the age of 6. They have older sisters (my step daughters from their Dads first marriage) who live elsewhere and although we are all close as a family and see each other regularly, facebook was a fantastic way for the sisters to keep in touch. My eldests best friend moved miles away and she was able to keep in touch with him, share photos etc via Facebook, and they remain firm friends despite seeing each other once a year. Also, the amount of reading, typing, spelling etc involved in using FB is surely beneficial to literacy development?. Also, back in the day it stopped the kids from wreaking my work on Farm Town ;)

I know lots of people think that having kids on social networking leaves them vulnerable to all sorts of predatory people but I fail to see this if the necessary precautions are taken. My girls (at least when they were little) were told that they were not to add people. I added close friends and family to their accounts and sorted privacy so no one else could see their inane posts. MY friends and family have also been told to just block them if they become annoying. Also, my kids know that although they may read (and hear...quite often) swear words they are not to repeat them EVER!

Basically I just want to know what the massive problem is? Opinions please smile

MoominsYonisAreScary Sat 08-Feb-14 20:43:13

My 10 year old doesnt have fb, I dont want him reading some of the idiotic things his dad puts on there. Also his 19 year old brother.

BruthasTortoise Sat 08-Feb-14 20:42:28

Well spotted Sam smile must remember to check dates!

SamU2 Sat 08-Feb-14 20:41:12

Zombie thread people!

BruthasTortoise Sat 08-Feb-14 20:38:46

My younger DC don't have FB but in all honesty I think FB is far more dangerous for children age 13-18 than it is for little kids. Pre-teens will use it to chat to friends/family and play games - teens are much more likely to use it for arguing with their peers and putting up inappropriate pics and statuses that may well haunt them for years. Plus it is considerably easier to monitor little kids Internet usage than it is with older teens.

CoffeeTea103 Sat 08-Feb-14 20:34:40

Whichever way you try to spin this it's bad parenting. How on earth do you think this is ok?

Sallyingforth Sat 08-Feb-14 20:32:22

There's no justification for this at all.
Your DCs can develop their writing skills by sending emails - they don't need FB to do it. They can develop their reading skills with books - remember them?
And apart from anything else, you and they know that FB has an age limit of 13. You are teaching them that it's OK to lie about their age in order to do things they shouldn't. Are you happy for them to use the same principle to get alcohol, cigarettes, knives, porn?

ladyquinoa Sat 08-Feb-14 19:46:27

FB is where a huge amount of bulling goes on. Opening an account makes you vulnerable to it. It really is a major problem.

alcazar Sat 08-Feb-14 19:29:07

I am literally gobsmacked at this! I have a 6 year old and absolutely no way would I allow her to have a facebook account. I have seen several things on my facebook feed that have been so utterly disturbing that they wont be forgotten, ever. The first is a photograph of a man who had had a horrific accident, his face was literally split in two. The second was The beginning shot of a video that was clearly some sort of child porn.

Other, milder ones include rude pics, such as silly boys with their penises out etc. The thing is, as in my case, if you have a friend who comments or likes a video or pic of something hideous, it will come up on your news feed, even if they comment to say, "I am reporting this, this is disgusting." The friends on my list are close family and close friends, all over 18, most sensible. This could be an aunt or cousin, how do you know what will pop up until it is too late to be unseen. I also have had several really random adds whilst I have had a pic of my daughter as a profile pic, which has now been changed.

ShatzePage Sat 08-Feb-14 19:11:33

grin at the piss poor attempts at justifying lazy parenting. Facebook is NOT for kids.

Ps-*dooin*-did you ever forgive your parents?

LifeIsForTheLiving Sat 08-Feb-14 19:09:26

I just have no idea why a 6 year d would need a Facebook account apart from wanting one because older siblings and parents do but that's no argument is it? Kids want lots of things older people have but sometimes these things are jut not age appropriate i.e Facebook

My 6 year old ds1 has a facebook account. Full privacy, unsearchable and has 4 'friends' - me, dh, and my two sisters.

It was set up recently for one reason only. He used to play Subway Surfers on my iPhone. As my Subway Surfers app was connected to my facebook, he could track his score against other peoples who were on my fb. My sister (15) and he got into a bit of a competition over their high scores and it became their 'thing'. Then my other sister got involved, and dh too (with ds1 thrashing them all score-wise)

For Xmas, he had a HUDL tablet and now has subway surfers on there and no longer uses my phone app. He doesn't even know what Facebook is, but he was really disappointed that he could no longer compare his score to my sister's. So rather than set up my fb on his tablet (which I felt uncomfortable with...don't really want him having access to it), I set his own facebook up, so that he has the score comparison.

Long rambling post...but just wanted to point out that there are other reasons why a 6 year old would 'want' a fb account!

Jessicarabbit85 Sat 08-Feb-14 18:57:43

Who wins at Facebook? What your Facebook activity says about you

You post about everything, all the time - itching for a like or comment, sometimes even nervous if you have been outspoken or controversial. You are an idiot, get a life. Ironically when you have got a life and don't need to seek constant validation through Facebook, other people may actually want to hear about it.

You post carefully-edited personal statuses, photos and interesting (in your opinion) observations everyday or every other day. You seek too much approval and attention, grow up.

You post about what negative emotion you're experiencing or a vague status inviting questions and interest. And then sometimes even answer the queries in the comments with 'cant talk about it on here, call me'. You are a d@&£ head and your friends probably find you very draining and would like to unfriend you (horror of all horrors, your numbers may go down!) unless they are all drama hunters too. Seriously, GROW UP!

You post about negative stuff that is happening to you AND NOTHING THE F£)@ ELSE. You are a whinge bag and nobody wants to hear it, grow up AND get a journal, with a lock on it, so nobody accidentally finds it and feels obliged to read it.

You post vague but obviously bitchy statuses or comments, waiting for a reaction, from who it was aimed at or anybody else, somebody please pay me some attention!!!! Grow up, you are an idiot onFacebook, and probably in real life too. That can only serve you for so long.

You like pages that are apparently about British pride, normally with a military slant or national symbol as the profile pic (because that's what we British do best, war!) On the whole they are not about being proud of Britain. You are an idiot, grow up and open your eyes and mind.

All of your posts involve booze, toilets or fraping. You are in your teens/twenties or are an idiot, possibly both. If you are in your tweens/twenties, enjoy. If you are an idiot, enjoy ;)

You share statuses that include any of the following words - luck, lucky, curse, fairy, witch, spell, Muslim, Islam etc etc. You are an idiot, grow up, get yourself educated and give your parents a slap from me.

You go on Facebook regularly but never so much as like or comment on other people's posts. You are a cyber stalker/wimp. Grow some balls, cut some holes in a newspaper and go out and stalk in the real world.

You share funny, interesting or inspiring posts but rarely your own, preferring to like or comment positively on other people's. You probably have a vague, positive impact on the world via Facebook and like to keep your private life, on the whole, private. (And you may be a little bit secretive/prone to cyber stalking.) THANK YOU! You're all grown up! (Also see notes from previous point re stalking.)

You post about intimate details of your relationship, valentines date or communicate with your other half through facebook posts. You are both cringe-inducing saps and probably need to work on your relationship, IN PRIVATE PURLEASE. Grow up together.

You have a facebook account but rarely use it, sometimes maybe to find an old friend or say something nice. WELL DONE! You didn't get sucked in like the rest of us and can hold your head up high, knowing that you have more self respect and dignity, and probably a much more fulfilling life, than 99% of the other however many millions of people on Facebook. And even better, you don't have to wade through the tsunami of s£&@ that these other Facebookers post on a daily basis like their life depends on it. You will of course probably never see this article, and if you did you probably couldn't be arsed to read it all the way down to here anyway because you have better things to do. CONGRATULATIONS!! You win at Facebook. Grow babies smile

Jessicarabbit85 Sat 08-Feb-14 18:57:29

While I agree with most of the previous posts that fb is neither necessary, safe or wholesome for children, I think some of the major issues have been ignored.

Since the creation of the Internet, anyone can publish anything (sometimes with quite an authoritative and misleading tone) and this has never been truer than on facebook, where everyone is a self-publicist. As an adult there are elements to fb that can have a negative psychological impact, and of course to teenagers and children these negative factors risk having even more of an impact.

I came across the following in a facebook article recently, which highlights several good points I think. Briefly;

1. Most of what is posted on fb is negative. Do we want the next generation to be self-pitying moaners?!
2. The best people and role models probably have least contact with and influence via facebook. Small minds talk about people and will enjoy facebook, great minds will be busy thinking and creating.
3. Peer pressure is immense - to be the coolest, funniest, drunkest, most popular(haha!) etc etc

And many more points that make me think facebook is bad for people on the whole and especially kids.

I also believe that because some people edit what they say so much to convey such wonderful lives (they never give themselves bad publicity) we only hear of their 'best bits'. To a fragile, young or insecure mind this can add to any 'I'm not good enough' issues that young people so often feel about themselves.

Anyway here's the article (I've edited out some swearing!) I agree with the overall message that people on/addicted to facebook are probably quite insecure and immature, and it also highlights some of the trash on there like groups, spam posts etc, if a bit harsh yet amusing at times!

---------next thread

biryani Mon 08-Jul-13 12:59:24

I''ve noticed that the kids I know who spend a lot of time on fb/ social networking get very little real-life freedom. I can't understand why fb is ok and real-life experiences are not.

kali110 Sun 07-Jul-13 21:44:30

Definitely agree with another poster, the age limit for fb should be higher

Ashoething Sun 07-Jul-13 21:07:14

None of my dcs have a clue what is 10.They are too busy out playing,climbing trees and riding their bikes.Just being kids really.LOL to it teaching be literate or internet savvy.Lazy parenting is all it is.

teetering13 Sun 07-Jul-13 20:43:44

The odd thing that I find with some parents that wait till their kids are 13 (because that's when fb is allowed) is that they then join up and are on there, doing whatever .. on their own!

Which is perfectly acceptable according to facebook (and some parents) because 13 is the age you have to be :/

I'd much rather take the rules into my own hands .. facebook doesn't care about your 13 year olds .. your kids will defo care about facebook though, no matter how much you try hide it from them.
At 10 your child is more likely to listen to you, really listen and not just nod their head hoping you'll shut up soon ... whereas 13 year olds .. well, that's when us parents fade into the background and their friends/own lives take over .. I want to drill some sense in them before that happens! lol

Sparklymommy Sun 07-Jul-13 15:20:37

My 10 yo has begged me for Facebook. The answer will remain NO until she is at least 13. Far too dangerous!

SHarri13 Sun 07-Jul-13 15:07:41

I just have no idea why a 6 year d would need a Facebook account apart from wanting one because older siblings and parents do but that's no argument is it? Kids want lots of things older people have but sometimes these things are jut not age appropriate i.e Facebook.

There's just no need!

fuzzpig Sun 07-Jul-13 14:38:29

TBH although obviously I do agree with all the safety/bullying issues with fb (and other things online), that barely even enters my mind when considering the OP's question. To me it is more than enough reason that it is totally unnecessary. My 6yo is a child. She does not need social networking. There is no need whatsoever to rush her into adolescent/adult pursuits.

biryani Sun 07-Jul-13 14:35:50

I'd stay well clear. Especially at such a young age.

GiveItYourBestShot Sun 07-Jul-13 14:18:54

Ilovexmastime one of my friends posted a picture of a group of men holding a decapitated cat - one of those "share and let's find these scum" threads. It was horrible to see and also quite out of character for him. Thankfully he hasn't done it again, I don't want to block him! I'm equally bothered by the fact FB keeps suggesting I would find a group called "Seeing your ex with an ugly cunt" amusing. No, really I wouldn't. Not sure how to deal with that!

TimeofChange Sun 07-Jul-13 14:18:29

Whether you are FB friends or not, you can view many peoples' accounts and photos which can be questionable.
There are some quite inappropriate photos on FB accessable to all.

My friend's daughter has been in trouble for sending pictures of herself to boys. She started this age 10.
It doesn't help that her mother has glamour photos of herself as profile pictures.

Soapysuds64 Sun 07-Jul-13 13:59:50

When my dd was 8, she was looking at a harmless video on the Brownies / girlguiding site. However, whoever had made this video put a link to her other work......a video in post apocalyptic times, with drug taking, two children being abandoned in a forest and befriended by an old man.....a direct link from the brownies site. I reported it to them and it was swiftly removed. She is now 11 and I have just allowed her fb access. Of course I will monitor her, but the dangers are everywhere on the Internet, not just Facebook.

secondchances Sun 07-Jul-13 13:45:08

What's wrong with using Skype on your account? Why did you have to set up a facebook account, lie about their age & then spend time drumming rules into them about facebook when you could have just asked family to set up Skype & make time to see if your kids to chat to them? 6? really? dd is coming up 7 & she doesn't even know what facebook is. Why can't kids be kids anymore?

kali110 Sun 07-Jul-13 12:41:41

Its for over 13 yo for a reason. Im shocked they are allowed accounts at 6 yo. Theres no need. They can ring or even write to their cousins/friends they don't need fb. My privacy settings are also set to high however i still get random inboxes from people i don't know, probably because my friends settings are not as high as mine.
People moan about fb and the internet are a danger to children but i think problem comes down to the parents because of examples like this.
I dont think its a good example to set your children. It may only be a little rule you are breaking but what happens when they are older and they break bigger rules? How can you tell them its wrong when you have already broken the rules by allowing your underage children to have fb accounts.
Fb can cause lots of trouble for people, your little ones may not be able to cope with difficult situations. You may think they would tell you about any weirdos but they can be fooled into thinking they would be in trouble. They are too young.

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