Your child on social media: this is what you need to know

It is tempting to share good pictures of your child on social networks like Instagram. However, it is essential to be very careful with this: you never know who will end up with your photos. Read all about the risks and what you can do about it here.

What are the risks? If you share an image of your child on social media, you should consider two risks:

  • Anyone can just take your photos.
  • Companies scan your photos to personalize ads.

Image of your child on a different profile: you can do this When you share photos on social networks, your friends and followers can save and reuse your photos. If you have published your photos publicly, even everyone can take them. If you see a picture of your child unintentionally on another Facebook profile, you can follow these steps:

Ask the person who uploaded the photo to remove it.

If that does not happen, you can do it formally. You can send a summons letter to the sender: a message clearly requesting the removal of the photo due to your child's privacy. As a father, you have that right. Keep in mind that if you send this letter, you must also be prepared to follow the legal follow-up steps if the shipper refuses to delete the photo.

Does such a letter not help? Then you can inform the site where the photo is placed. For example, on Instagram, you can indicate that the terms of use have been violated.

If your child's photo is still not deleted, you can go to court. You can demand a penalty payment until the picture has been removed.

Companies use photos for ads: Another risk is that companies use your photos for ads. For example, a company can scan a picture of your newborn baby, recognize it and show ads for baby products.

Self-esteem: If your child is a little older, he or she will understand the concept of likes, comments, etc. If you post a picture of your child and it doesn’t seem very popular, your child can feel upset, and it can affect self-esteem. Always make sure you buy Instagram followers and likes to make your child feel happy and good about themselves!

Parental control on social media: The media is everywhere, and children can often easily access them. Fun and useful, but for parents, it is usually not a pleasant idea that your child can be confronted with almost anything. With the Parental Control functions, which are generally already provided by devices and programs, they can filter or block the content, and limit and control the behavior of the media when necessary.

Parental control is not a substitute for a good conversation with your child about their behavior on social media, but a useful tool.

Do you want to configure filters to prevent children from seeing inappropriate images? You can choose which YouTube videos children can watch with the ‘restricted mode,' you can ensure that children do not watch inappropriate videos. You can read more about it here.

What is sharenting? Sharing photos, videos or other information about your child on social media is also called "sharenting": a combination of "sharing" and "parenting." How do you, as a parent, decide what you do and do not share about your child online? After all, young children cannot agree with the things you share, and they also have the right to privacy. In-depth research provides advice to respect the digital rights of children.

Connected toys: A surprising development is the arrival of toys connected to the internet: connected toys. Think of a doll you can talk to, a teddy bear that remembers your birthday and your favorite color and a robot that tells jokes. But there are also dangers: at the moment, this toy is very sensitive to attacks, privacy leaks, and DDoS attacks.

What are 21st-century skills? These are the skills we need in the 21st century. We see that companies, universities and training institutes give less importance to knowledge and more and more significance to skills such as:

  • Working together
  • The creativity
  • ICT capabilities
  • Communication
  • Problem-solving ability
  • Critical thinking
  • Social and cultural skills
  • Programming is also a 21st-century skill.
  • What effect does social media have on young children?

Research on the effects of social media use on small children is still in its infancy. Little has been discovered or scientifically proven. We know that children often use means that do not connect to their development phase.

The brain of a child between 0 and 2 develops mainly by experiences such as touching, moving, feeling and tasting. Something that you can only experience in the 'real' world.

How do I talk to my child about severe online dangers? There are regular reports in the news about the challenges that have gotten out of hand. Children or young people encourage each other through social media to perform a task or participate in a particular game. Such challenges are not always innocent and, sometimes, even hazardous. Some advice:

My child watches YouTube all day. How do I discuss this? Even if you do not like anything about videos on YouTube, it is essential for children to know that their parents understand them. On YouTube, you can find extensive information about YouTube's opportunities and risks and many questions you can ask your child.

If you want your child to be protected, you can make some agreements like for example:

  • Never share private information such as name, address, phone number or the name of your school
  • Come up with a good nickname (together)
  • Protect your profile as much as possible; 'Only for friends' is the best option
  • Just post neutral photos or better yet: no pictures in which your face is recognizable.
  • Be selective when accepting a friend request: just do this if you've ever met someone in real life.
  • Remove unknown people from your friends' list.
  • Always keep passwords and login details secret: also for your best friend.
  • Do not bully and do not hurt people, you would not do that in real life either.
  • Have you seen or experienced something that bothers you? Tell someone you trust, for example, a parent, a neighbor or a teacher.

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