Children on Facebook

If you’re a parent, you generally have a fairly intense concept of right and wrong, despite there being differences within your general and wider communities. I am not judging, everyone has the right to raise their children how they see fit. Despite that this will inevitably lead to a destructive discussion, I would like to raise a point about the posting of images of children on Facebook and other websites, and how this could be a potentially dangerous habit.

When a child is born, they have very little impact on society. This is important because it enables parents to steer the child away from the lessons that they themselves can teach as a parent, rather than a let the child make unnecessary failures. When a parent posts a picture of their child onto the internet they are leaving an impression of them on the world that the child has no control over. The issue is that parents who are children of a social disconnection (via social media websites with physical separation) have not learned the lessons that come with such interaction. In fact no one knows what the true lessons of the internet and how it may be used in the future. The internet is only just graduating from college (in a figurative sense) itself and entering the workforce, at a meagre 25 years old. If you think of the internet in useful terms, it is only been about 15 years since the notion of being able to do anything other than share documents.

With the internet as young as it is, and the lessons that have not yet been learned about the power and appropriate respect that is necessary when dealing with it, parents need to think twice before posting images of their child onto the internet for the world to see. Now this is solely conjecture, I don’t have an answer as to whether there are any consequences to this habit. But I understand the power of the internet and can recognise that the public exhibition of children could be potentially harmful to them later in life. The point is, we don’t know so lets be a little cautious.

To that end I would ask that parents, in all their wisdom, ask themselves whether they would like a random stranger to walk into their house, unannounced, to look at their child. Now that’s a scary proposition, but it’s the truth. If you put a picture onto the internet, no matter how ‘secure’ or how much privacy you think you have, you still must consider that it is PUBLIC and that anyone can see it. You can never know what will happen to you ‘private’ data in the future if it sits on a server in a factory somewhere in the world and could be robbed, stolen or even just sold without being securely wiped clean.

Now I am not trying to scare people or make them take any action at all. I want parents and everyone else, to take a moment and think about the possible consequences of posting pictures of their children, or children in general on a website like facebook.

This is a potentially contentious topic and I would love to know what you think about it.

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1 Comment

  1. Caroline

     /  August 29, 2011

    Agreed! I have no kids of my own (yet) but I hate it when my friends put their babies´ pictures on their facebook page (yes I have come to that age -27- where people around me start having the little ones). Those children cannot object to having their photo put on the internet. I always tell my friends to ask first if they want to upload a photo of me. And they respect it. It is common decency. So why does that common decency and respect not apply to their own children? They are going to grow older and will find those pictures of themselves one day, and it will be too late and out of their control. You say it is every parents´ right to raise their child as they see fit. I moderately agree with that; some parents´ behavior puts the child at risk or harm. We as fellow-members of society have a duty to stand up for those who cannot speak for themselves!

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