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To facebook or not to facebook?

posted 7 years 9 months ago
I have an 8 year old boy who keeps bugging me and saying that his friends are on facebook and he wants to be too. I have told him he’s not allowed because it’s meant to be for older kids and so far I don’t think he’s created an account but I don’t know whether I’m being unreasonable not letting him. I use facebook myself to keep in touch with old friends but i do sometimes get adds from random people I’ve never met. I worry that random people will try and befriend my son and he wont have the sense to reject invitations from people he doesn’t know. I’ve been thinking about this a lot since that report in the papers not that long ago about that girl who was murdered by someone she met on facebook. It’s such an awful thing to happen and I just hate to imagine my little boy in that situation! What do other users think? Has anyone let their kids on facebook before they’re really old enough? Is there anything I can put on my computer that can actually stop him being able to use facebook?

posted 7 years 9 months ago
If you do let him have a facebook account, you can set it up with your email address and you can set his password, so then you have the option of keeping the password to yourself and logging on for him, or when he has been on you can check his account. If you set it up with your email, that means if he gets an invite by someone he doesn't know etc, an email will appear in your account.

posted 7 years 9 months ago
I'm not sure that I would allow my children unsupervised internet access at that age. Make them use the computer when you are around, and ensure that you have access to check what has been done. But to ensure that he doesn't feel like you're snooping make sure that this is all set out as rules of him having the access.

My 12 year old has just got herself a Facebook account, but she seems to use it sensibly (she doesn't live with me). She doesn't add people she doesn't know or will ask her mum before doing so if she is unsure. She also understands that for her safety her mum has access to check what she has been doing.

It seems to work at the moment although I am sure she won't like the prying in a few years when boys become a real issue, and I think it is of that age that the risks become more real.

Hope you can come to an understanding with him.

AlexAlex Moderator
posted 7 years 9 months ago
Personally I would say NO!!! there is an age limit on these things for a reason (you have to confirm you are over 12 or 13) and yes Peer pressure can be hard but keeping your child safe is harder and be saying NO to FB is one way for you to protect your child and keep him safe.

posted 7 years 9 months ago
Im with you on this one Alex my answer would be a firm NO.(im not a fan of facebook anyway)My nephews (both under tha age of 10) are on facebook and i doubt if my BIL or SIL check on them or who they correspond with at all Bad! . Shrug

posted 7 years 9 months ago
I really don't think I'd want my children to be on Facebook until they are Secondary school age atleast. Personally I just think they are too young and innocent before that and therefore impressionable and vulnerable.
AND yes I'll be the saddo health freak in this discussion to also bang home the message that kids spend too much time sitting on their bums; rather than chatting to their friends over facebook they could be out in the garden playing football or barbies with their friends!! But that's just my opinion Shrug

posted 7 years 8 months ago
8 years old does seem very young

posted 7 years 5 months ago
There are more issues with that than you might even think. Apart from obvious ones I have just found out that online photos that we are all so eager to post contain much more than we would probably like to share. When I tested photos taken by me, my kids, or sent to me by someone, like half of those contained geotags - longitude and latitude of the place where they were taken. It's normally fine, but do you really want to share your exact place of residence with the world? Or the playground your child is at? Or the place where your brand new car is parked? Or the kid can say - "look, I have a brand new cell phone" and posts it. It's really very easy to track where you live - I mean the EXACT address. Kind of weird, but things like that really exist. New York Times published an article "Web photos that reveal secrets". Felt kind of nervous after reading it. You can find it online easily.

posted 7 years 5 months ago
ii wouldnt let an 8yr old have facebook. Gemma had jr facebook until lasty year shes 13 now and i let her have an account. Someone hacked into her account recently and she couldnt get in, we dont know how, but all her photos were on there.

I set it up for her and for the first few months she had to ask me to log on for her as i used my email addy and password, so she couldnt log on until i let her.

Now shes 13 shes able to do it herself, she polices her own account and if theres someone shes not sure of shell come and ask. Recently she got a message from someone she didnt know but was a mutual friend of hers telling her she was pretty and that he liked her, erm shes 13 and he was over 20, f**king pervert! (sorry language i know) Anyways i picked up on this deleted the message blocked the user reported him for abuse and made sure that she could not be contacted by him again by altering her privacy settings

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