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When Should the Kids Have Facebook Accounts?

What ages are appropriate for joining social media sites? Montco Mommy debates.

It is official. My kids have their own Facebook pages. Yes, they are only 5 and 7 now, but in all honesty, they don’t quite “own them” solo just yet.

I set them up, after much request from family, not for them to “Like” random pages, Harlem Shake videos and let’s face it, lots of cute cat photos. Instead, I find it to be a place to chronicle their lives.

Much like my weekly column, I find it to be a nice space to save their daily shenanigans. My children are full of hysterical commentary, and I’ve dubbed them their “-isms.” Fans of my own, personal Facebook page largely tune in strictly to read the latest Seamus-ism or Alora-ism, not so much what I’m doing day to day.

Then there are the photos. We take so many photos, and like most busy moms, where do they all go? They go onto a smartcard, of course. And, then what?

I’d love to report that I have rows and rows of leather-bound photo albums, complete with the scrapbooked pages I’d designed in my mind. But, sadly, that is where those pages remain. In my mind…

Instead, a majority of the photos we snap of our darling tots seldom make it off the camera. But, with a family nearly six hours away (and more), we do post a lot to Facebook.

Since it is easily done right from my phone, and since my phone is my “camera” 90 percent of the time, it makes sense. And, don’t get me wrong. It is lovely to share those images on my own page. But now, with the kids having their own pages, we can tag away.

The pages will serve as virtual scrapbooks, to save all of those precious moments (even if mommy got too busy to make a fancy scrapbook).

I’m not sure when I’ll trust them to actually take OWNERSHIP of the pages. But, by then, they’ll have a decade or more of pretty funny childhood photos.

What do you think is the appropriate age to start a page? According to Facebook’s terms of service, you can be as young as 13. I’m not sure it is wise, given news that the Walls can later be used to deny you entry into college or from getting a great job.

I think I’ll be the evil mom I am, and make them wait at least until 16 or maybe 18 to have legit pages, that they run, without supervision. Maybe that sounds harsh, but anything prior to that age will either be stringently watched by Momma or had better be in a fake name. 

What do you think?

Eve February 23, 2013 at 01:29 PM
Every parent and child is different. I'm sure you know what's best for yours. I, personally, think 5 and 7 is way to young to be introduced to social media. Supervised or not. Facebook is addicting and can cause depression. Kids today do not need another reason to stay inside. This is my humble opinion, of course.
Leigh February 25, 2013 at 01:26 PM
Maybe do some research on the ramifications of social media, especially when you start kids out too young. Supervised or not, they are at a disadvantage as far as empathy and understanding face to face communications. All parents say the old "not my kid", but obviously, it is somebody's kid, no?

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