My 11-year-old son embarked on a mission to download Snapchat onto his iPod.
He began by sending my ex a text message asking her if he could sign up for Snapchat. She then texted me to discuss the request. Fortunately, we both agreed he had no good reason to sing up for the service.
Later in the evening he breathlessly explained how Snapchat allows you to take photos of yourself and edit them to make it appear as if a rainbow was shooting out of your mouth…or you could even do something along the lines of making you look something like Arnold Schwarzenegger.
A wave of relief swept over me.
Since he does not have a phone and the only contact number/emails for FaceTime are of family, I did not expect he wanted to use Snapchat for sexting or anything along those lines, but I am still hesitant to let him begin down the social media path.
I have heard him comment about the desire to have people see pictures or videos he has made and “like” them. Another trap of social media…probably for discussion another day.
I did find an excellent guide for parents to learn more about social media concerns and which apps we should learn more about. The article appeared on Common Sense Media – “9 Social Media Red Flags Parents Should Know About” – and I recommend you read it.
For now, I will search out an app my son can use to take silly photos without the requirement to sign up for social media. If you have any suggestions, let me know.
What social media apps do your kids use and how did you decide to let them begin using them?