Facebook for Young Children: Like or Dislike?
If you haven’t already heard, “Facebook Inc. is developing technology that would allow children younger than 13 years old to use the social-networking site under parental supervision, a step that could help the company tap a new pool of users for revenue but also inflame privacy concerns,” according to the Wall Street Journal.
If this technology is achieved and implemented, Facebook will be setting in motion a lifestyle of social media at a very early age – and it is bound to make a pretty penny in the process (children’s game market = lucrative). Even if Facebook links parents’ accounts to their children’s and sets parental controls in place, I wonder if it will be able to ensure an adequate level of safety for our younger children.
Is this announcement a recipe for potential disaster, or a legitimate view into the future?
This “news has sparked debate among parents about the risks and rewards of early Facebook access.” Some say that we should protect our children from social media’s potential dangers, and others say that this may create a safer community for pre-teens if it is used correctly.
Questions parading through my mind include: Will there be a way to validate the authenticity of your child’s “friends”? Will there will an infallible option to block nasty perverts and potential bullying? Can Facebook build in a widget that gives my child good judgment at all times? Am I mentally fighting the inescapable future? Is my line of thinking too old-school? Can I get another 10 years before I hear my daughter say, “Mom, nobody thinks that way anymore! You’re so old.”?
There may be no way around all of this. So, with the technological, social future looming, I’d like your opinion:
Should Facebook allow children under 13 to have an account? And, at what age will YOU allow your child to have an account?
What do you think? Facebook for Young Children: Like or Dislike?