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AIBU?

but the school I work in doesn't seem concerned enough about Snapchat

71 replies

KatieM8585 · 28/06/2017 13:28

Hi,
So I'm not sure if any of you have seen this in the news but Snapchat has released a feature which allows you to share the location of your snaps publicly.
www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/jun/23/snapchat-maps-privacy-safety-concerns

I'm a teacher and I brought this up at a staff meeting. The deputy said that it could maybe be mentioned in computing lessons or in PSHE but I really felt that not enough focus was being out on it school wide. People just didn't seem that concerned.

Has your child's school mentioned anything about this?
Maybe I'm being over concerned?

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KatieM8585 · 28/06/2017 14:46

The little picture of the girl would indicate someone i know like just people you've added but the thermal dots are strangers. So if you didn't want to turn the ghost mode on because none of your friends turned it on then this would all be public.

I get that Facebook and insta let you share location which is also scary but this is accurate to the road you are on and not even JUST when you post but constantly letting your followers (or strangers if ghost is not turned on) where you are.

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BlackPeppercorn · 28/06/2017 14:46

We had a text from the school about it, followed up by an email from the safeguarding lead.
When I asked dd about it, she rolled her eyes and said tey'd been told about it at school and Mr X had offered help in switching it off and gone round to all who wanted it.
So dd's school at least seems to have dealt with it.

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FATEdestiny · 28/06/2017 14:47

I've downloaded snapchat and I just made a username and I'm seeing all these public snaps of people I do not know as I have no friends on snapchat at all

My guess would be that what you are seeing are people with public Snapchat profiles, and their public posts when you click on them.

Most Snapchat users are not children Hmm

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ArchieStar · 28/06/2017 14:51

What's FOMO?

I don't have snapchat. Never have never will.

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KatieM8585 · 28/06/2017 14:52

@FATEdestiny yeah that's true. I guess it's mostly teens.

I need to look into these more and find out more about them. We got the year 6 kids to list all the apps etc they liked to use so making my way through that but Snapchat really was a red flag to me because we'd already had that previous issue with a few kids sending inappropriate pics.

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KatieM8585 · 28/06/2017 14:52

@Archiestar FOMO = Fear of Missing out.

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FATEdestiny · 28/06/2017 14:52

When I asked dd about it, she rolled her eyes...

This doesn't surprise me. Because really un-clued-up teachers like the OP are trying to "educate" the kids on stuff that the kids know laughably more than the staff do.

KatieM8585 - it's great that you are trying to learn about this stuff. There's a lot more to understand than just the headlines you read in the tabloids.

wait until someone tries to explain to you the ins and outs, stresses and importance of "streeks"

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WannaBe · 28/06/2017 14:54

Yep, most in my DS' year have it turned off as well. They've entitled it stalking mode and are pretty derogatory about kids who have it turned on and think it's cool because everyone knows that it's a bad idea.

But either way, it's the parents' job to ensure that their primary aged children are using social media responsibly. And "parents don't keep up with this sort of thing" is no excuse. If you have a child with a mobile then its your job as a parent to keep on top of it, not the school's.

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KatieM8585 · 28/06/2017 14:57

@FATEdestiny streeks?! oh crap I feel I'm going to find out more than I ever wanted to know.

I do want to understand though because it forms such a big part of the kids lives and I feel like the point you made about the teachers trying to educate the kids on stuff the kids know about is so true, It ends up feeling like I'm patronising them which I don't want to do. Being online and using these things doesn't HAVE to be bad but I want to be able to be positive with them about it and teaching them responsibility without scaremongering or talking down to them.

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FATEdestiny · 28/06/2017 15:04

I need to look into these more and find out more about them

You know the best people to teach you? The kids.

Talk to them about it. Here's a novel idea for you... trust that they are good people. Take an interest. Get them to get their phones out and physically show you, on their phones, how Snapchat works. Ask questions.

Be interested. Not just as a one off, but periodically and often. Ask who people are, what they've been saying. Watch the videos the Year 6 kid follows (scooter tricks most often round here) and be into them ("wow that's cool, look at that flip jump!" Or whatever). Ask tge kids what the stupid people do online and what the wiser, more clued up kids do differently.

The kids.

The kids will teach you.

You need to go into this with the basic assumption that most people are good and want to be good.

(Then ask them how streeks works. Snapchat is all about the streeks)

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KatieM8585 · 28/06/2017 15:07

@FATE I think if the school knew I was asking to see children's phones they would be really cross. Not meant to have them in school. It's a shame that they only want to force knowledge on children and not think that the children might have something to offer themselves.

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TrollMummy · 28/06/2017 15:17

DD has 'stalker mode' switched off but many of her friends do not. It is the source of many arguments when they can see who was with who and where - can you imagine what this is like where teen girls arguments are concerned

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sailorcherries · 28/06/2017 15:23

Apparently you can only see people you are friends with already, not strangers. The danger lies with people having those they don't know on their snapchat already.

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KatieM8585 · 28/06/2017 15:27

@sailorcherries I can see lots of public profiles and already seen a d..K pic

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hackmum · 28/06/2017 15:28

YANBU. This is a huge issue and every parent I know is worried about it. I think schools should be using whole-school assemblies to warn children to switch the feature off. They should also be emailing parents to warn them.

"Sharing the location of your snaps publicly" doesn't quite do justice to how awful this is. It shows you where other users are in real time - so if your friend is walking from school to home, for example, you can see exactly where they are. It's an abuser's dream, essentially.

And even if the child is safe in its own home, the feature is essentially alerting all that child's Snapchat friends to where they live - information that you might well want to keep quiet.

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sailorcherries · 28/06/2017 15:34

KatieM I've no idea then. The snapchat website only talks about being friends with the people.

My DS7 has snapchat to video call his aunt and cousin annoy them with pictures and I've already set it to ghost mode, no one can see him and he doesn't know how to open the map. I had a look at my own map, also in ghost mode, and I can't see anyone I'm not friends with.

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monkeywithacowface · 28/06/2017 15:44

DS (12) doesn't have snapchat, instagram or facebook and given the ongoing bullying issues he and a few of his friends have suffered this year he won't be getting them either.

He can text and whatsapp and I regularly read his messages and group chats (which he largely doesn't get involved in) and to be honest some of the content is quite shocking, not directed at him fortunately but a bullies dream.

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TrollMummy · 28/06/2017 15:56

The issue also is that many teens are 'friends' with hundreds of people. This is largely due to the fact that more friends/ followers equals being more popular. While these 'friends' are not technically strangers they are often just acquaintances or kids that go to their school but not always people they know very well.

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KatieM8585 · 28/06/2017 15:56

@monkeywithacowface group chats can be really mean. I think so much can be misunderstood in text only. You don't get a feel for tone or sarcasm or anything so things can be misunderstood and then others get involved. I've seen it happen with adults never mind children.

Sorry to hear that your son had issues. Bullying has always been around but there are just so many platforms for it now. My niece told me she won a challenge against some one on a quiz game and they messaged her on that quiz app and started saying all kinds of horrible things to her.

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monkeywithacowface · 28/06/2017 16:03

I agree Katie, I know realistically I can't prevent bullying full stop but I can reduce the number of platforms and opportunities the bullies have to carry it out.

I was watching This Morning this week and another set of devastated parents whose 14 year old son killed himself due to bullying. Snapchat had been a huge part of the problem. It seemed there was no sanctuary away from the bullying for this poor boy.

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KatieM8585 · 28/06/2017 16:09

@monkeywithacowface Omg I didn't see that. I heard about that game blue whale that kids were playing which is a challenge a day for 30 days. they get groomed basically and the final day you get told to kill yourself. Horrid.

I'm not in school today as I got a day to report write eat biscuits and spend time online so Im going to look up some more of these apps that the year six kids told my colleague about.

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monkeywithacowface · 28/06/2017 16:14

www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/sam-abel-suicide-this-morning_uk_595105a2e4b0da2c731cdace

This Morning are running a "Be Kind" campaign aimed at teens might be worth looking at

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KatieM8585 · 28/06/2017 16:20

@monkeywithacowface Yes thanks this is useful.

I think if children can know more in primary school it would better prepare them for teen years. I really want some teenagers to come into the school to talk to the kids because I think adults saying stuff can sound a bit patronising and yet teens is more relatable and aspirational

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monkeywithacowface · 28/06/2017 16:22

To be honest I think a lot of parents need educating as well. I know so many that allow these apps with no understanding at all of how they work. Our school had a guy come in to do a cyber safety talk for parents it was most illuminating!

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KatieM8585 · 28/06/2017 16:24

@monkeywithacowface we had a guy come into school at the start of the year during one of our inset days and he was talking about Facebook and instagram. One of my colleagues put up their hand and was like "Okay but what about snapchat, fling, WhatsApp, Omegle, Lovoo etc?
He didn't know what to say...he hadn't;t heard of them. And this was someone the school had got in as an e safety expert!

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