Friday, June 8, 2012

Facebook for the Tween Crowd?

Have you heard the rumors that Facebook is considering allowing accounts for kids under 13? Bethany has been bugging us for YEARS for a Facebook account, and it's true that many of her friends are already there. So far we have resisted. Our arguments against her being on Facebook have been that 1)It's against the rules, and 2) She spends enough time online and texting to begin with, and doesn't need another excuse to spend even more time tethered to an electronic device.

What Facebook is proposing, so I hear, is connecting the accounts of kids under 13 to their parents' Facebook accounts. Presumably that would make it easier for parents to monitor what their kids are doing online. I'm sure Bethany will get wind of this, and then it will be time for yet another Facebook discussion. Otherwise known as Bethany begging and pleading and telling us that EVERYONE is on Facebook.

I'm not sure yet how I feel about this. I still think she spends more than enough time plugged in. But I would be more willing to allow her to have an account if the Facebook rules change AND her account is connected to mine. I would have to have full access to her account, no exceptions. Following is an informative infographic put together by uKnowKids, where you can go to monitor your child's online presence - include social networking, photos, and smartphones. I've not signed up with uKnowKids, but according to their homepage, it is FREE.

What do you think? Do you allow your child under the age of 13 to have a Facebook account? If so, do you specific rules regarding their account? Or if you haven't let your kids on Facebook yet, would it change your mind if Facebook changed its rules?

Also, feel free to share this infographic on your own blog by copying and pasting the code below!

1 comment:

Melissa said...

My son is 6, and he has a FB account that I set up for him. It's mainly used to play a couple Zynga games and to keep in touch with a few close family members. He does not know the password, and cannot access it without my supervision. He doesn't really have much of an interest in it right now, but I'm sure that will change in the coming years. My 12 year old cousin has a FB account, and some of the comments I read on his page (from other kids) make me sick. I think if kids are to have a FB account at such a young age, there needs to be a strict set of ground rules as to what is and what is not appropriate, and their activity has to be highly supervised to make sure that those ground rules are being followed. Also, being super strict about your kids' FB activity doesn't necessarily mean that you don't trust your own kids... it means that you can't trust the kids that they're friends with. ;)