So a thought came to me last week about this topic. Grab a cuppa before you start reading this.
I found the following statement when researching this topic online. It’s alarming!
“It has been suggested that 50% of images shared on paedophile sites have been taken from parents’ social media sites. We lose full control of where our kids’ photos end up when we share them online.”
This social media culture that we live in today is still very new. Many of us know a time, not so long ago, when we didn’t have access to smartphones. One implication is that most of us do not give enough thought to what we post online. Therefore, the long term implications of having children’s photos online, if any, are still unknown.
To be honest, it is great seeing pictures of kids doing funny and silly things online and it always brightens your day. As parents we want to share the growth and development of our children with friends and relatives who don’t necessarily live nearby. We can now share with more people, more easily than ever before.
Now don’t get me wrong. This post isn’t there to induce guilt if you’ve decided to share pictures of your kids online. Are you thinking before you post and are you aware of the potential risks? There is a dark side to social media and to the internet in general.
What message are we sending our kids? Are we teaching them that they always need to be on show for us? Are we teaching them that we need to digitally archive every moment of our lives? Are we teaching them that their sense of importance and identity is determined by the number of comments, likes and shares on social media? These are some of the powerful messages…
Are we missing the moment if we’re so preoccupied with digitally capturing the moment to our camera roll?
Are there potential safety risks if we share pictures of our kids online?
Are we becoming the ‘parenting paparazzi’?
I guess, a photo or video, once posted online, can be shared and manipulated. You cannot control how it is used by others.
So where does that leave us? Personally, we should weigh up the risks and then make an informed decision. For me, that decision has always been NOT to post pictures of my children across social media. What are your thoughts?
If you want some further reading on this topic, see here.
Until next time 🙂