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Unsafe Websites for Children

Posted in: Cyber Bullying, how to prevent juvenile delinquency, Online Safety, resiliency of teens, teen talk, Youth Resiliency Started by

Unsafe Websites for Children

i can’t even imagine how we used to live prior to the arrival of the internet. when i first left home in 1998, the internet was still at its infancy in several parts of africa. looking back now, it feels like a very long time. i don’t miss letter writing but i miss reading written and signed letters with a personal touch.

i remember several occasions on which i used to sit down to write to all my extended family: brothers, sisters, and cousins. that was the easier part. the harder part was licking every envelope just before putting the stamps. these days, more often i correspond with sms, twitter or email. each of these new methods are a far cry from snail mail.

these new tools are all bye-products of the internet. not withstanding the internet ‘s boon, there is also a bane, you must be aware of. some of these emerging tools and technologies are not very healthy for your children. some are out rightly dangerous. below is a list of websites  i consider not very safe for children. if you don’t agree, let me know.

formspring.com

this site founded in 2009 had over 22m users by february 2011. it allows users with profiles to ask questions and receive answers from people they do not know in person. users can link their profiles to other social media sites such as facebook, twitter and blogger.

One of the main concerns about children using this site is that children may get deceptive and misleading information or advice from cyber predators and cyber criminals. such cases have happened before so this is based on fact. unfortunately, some pedophiles have taken advantage of the open nature of these sites to find new perpetrate crime.

collegeacb.com

this website is currently re-inventing itself after it has come under scrutiny for harboring anonymous and hateful forms of expression. collegeacb is trying to make a more positive and productive place for anonymous conversations. the site promises to publish content that allows users to highlight what they like and remove and what they do not like.

this is a positive step, however the element of anonymity in my opinion, makes it difficult to do know who is a sheep is and who is wolf.

chatroulette.com

this website pairs random strangers in web-based conversations by video, audio or text. the site historically carried r-rated content and has come under fire for such content. it was estimated that 1 in 8 feeds were r-rated, making it extremely attractive to young people who are pushing conventional boundaries.

in response to the criticisms, the site has been trying to re-invent itself. it has encouraged users to be at 18 years of age and to avoid pornographic content.

gamespot.com

if you believe that games are taking a toll on your child‘s social and academic performance, check his or her activities on gamespot.com account.  if you however believe that games will not help your child ‘intellectual development, then this will be a site to watch and be family with the y issues young people are dealing with and how you or a counselor can intervene to help them out.