Wednesday, June 24, 2009


FROM CNN: The American Academy of Pediatrics has come out with some tips to help parents protect their kids as they enter the world of texting and social networking.

Experts say it's crucial for moms and dads to join social networking sites, like Facebook and Myspace, and become online "friends" with their kids so they can better monitor them.

They also encourage parents to talk with their older children about "sexting" -- which refers to text messages with pictures of children and teens who are naked or engaged in sex acts.

Kids of all ages should know that sexting is considered a crime in many areas. Experts have noted that peer pressure can play a big role in texting, so the AAP suggests collecting cell phones from teens and "tweens" at parties or large gatherings to reduce the temptation.

Experts also suggest emphasizing that everything sent over the Internet or a cell phone can be shared with the entire world, so it's important to show good judgment when sending messages, and to use privacy settings on social media sites.

When I was in high school no one had cell phones. I bet kids these days can't even imagine that. I wonder how many teenagers don't have cell phones. I think I would talk to my kids about the implications later in life. What if that picture ended up on the Internet and cost you a job or a scholarship? I think the same thing has been said about Facebook/Myspace. Don't put anything on there you don't want your boss to see. Most of the tips above seem like no-brainers. It makes me wonder if the problem has to do with parents being naive and not talking to their kids about sexting.

-NewsAnchorMom Jen

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