With everyone and your mother being on Facebook, it's only normal that teenagers reaching 13 would want to be on it. The New York Times' Nick Bilton explains the steps involved in securing your kids' account and explaining to them the consequences of what they post.
Even for an adult, Facebook's privacy settings are as daunting as trying to do your taxes with an abacus. For teenagers, unaware of the consequences of their online actions, using Facebook incorrectly could potentially leave a digital trail that might follow them all the way through high school, college and into the real world. What's more, there are also creepy people out there on social networks.
Here's what I told my editor.
First, you should sit down with children and explain that anything -- stress the word anything -- they post can and will be used against them on the Internet. This includes private messages and photos they believe are visible only to friends and comments they leave on people's pictures or status updates. Although all of these things can be set to private, a friend-turned-enemy could take a screenshot of something your teenager has shared, then send it around school for all to jeer at.
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