When children are eligible for using social media (from 13 years old), they begin to enter a completely new virtual world. Social media with its nature based on connection and storytelling from users will do everything for people to post and share more to maintain this network broader and more connected. This will inevitably result in your child posting more than 10 pictures a day.
Oversharing on social media too much does not only affect other people, your child’s psychological development but also carries the risk of disclosing information and being used by bad guys. So, are your kids oversharing on social media?
What is oversharing on social media?
This is when your child overshares personal information with friends or strangers. This happens both in real life and online especially on social media as it has never been easier for your child to express themselves.
Some signs that your child is sharing too much:
- Check-in wherever they go.
- Post insights about personal relationships like family, friends, love, and more.
- See Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, etc as a way to let go of all emotions.
- Post photos or videos of their private stuff/information
- Too often post photos/videos of meals and cafes.
- Post about whatever they are doing at a certain time, several times a day.
- They publicly share too much personal information such as date of birth, phone number, address, etc., and their photo.
Explain oversharing on social media
Social media encourages that
Since social media operates in the form of networks and connections, it requires the interaction and activity of many individuals to build a dense content network that keeps users engaged for longer.
Furthermore, the social screen features “invite” users to share everything about their personal lives. Check-in, update status, upload photos/videos, and certain events are easier than ever with the touch of a button. Unfortunately, this can lead to the fear of missing out known as FOMO. People with this syndrome are often obsessed with a fear of missing out, losing something that those around them will achieve.
To release emotions and stress
When your child gets upset at school or you for some reason and they don’t release it, your child most likely, as we have all seen, expressing anger on Facebook in words. The language used sometimes is not appropriate.
Because social media gives people a voice and a platform for expressing it, it can tempt and cause your child to express too much and out-of-control emotions. And gradually create a habit of depending on social media to relieve stress. It is also alarming if your child is aggressive at you.
Get other people’s attention
Social profiles can give your child the impression that other people’s lives are much better than theirs. Your child may view other people’s having-fun photos, and then question themselves why their lives are so boring. This can make your child feel insecure about his or her own life. So they will try to show their own “highlights” whenever possible to be deem cool by others.
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Besides, likes, comments, shares, and this small attention can give your child a sense of popularity and tempt by it. This can lead to a desire to post things that are too overwhelming and unnecessary to maintain their popularity.
How to talk with your child about oversharing on social media?
Pay attention to who can see the post
Let your child know that they should only post content that they are comfortable with when others (perhaps not their friends) see it as well. Encourage your children to use appropriate words online when posting and commenting because they are not only friends but also teachers and police will be able to see what your child shares online.
What should limit sharing
Help your child understand what information should be kept confidential and why personal family information such as a home address, bank account, etc. should be kept private. Besides, a lot of pre-teenagers and teens send text/pictures/videos about their bodies to their friends because they are afraid that they will not be “cool” if they do not do so or when they want to receive praise from others.
We have articles about how to keep children safe online during COVID.
This is extremely dangerous because these images can be stored and spread all over the Internet, your children may be used for blackmail and revenge later.
Permanent existence of what is posted
Remind your child that once they have uploaded anything on the Internet, there is no way to delete the text/picture/video entirely away from the Internet. Even if your child deletes the information, it can be saved on someone else’s device (through screenshot for example) and then spread over the network later.
Be careful when chatting in groups
Make sure that before deciding to send messages to a group of many people, your child should carefully consider who needs and should see your messages, and then, filter the content to send.
Sexual assault on the Internet
Educate your child about cyber-sexual assault/seduction and its life-long consequences. Teenagers who do not sexually talk to strangers online are less likely to come into contact with sexual attackers. Let your child know that you should not hesitate to block strangers online, and trust your senses when you feel that something is wrong.
However, the first manifestations of the case of online sexual seduction are that the attacker sends nudity, pornography to get your child’s attention and make them curious about gender things.
Don’t forget that your teen, who is in his puberty, is going to be very curious about these things. That’s why many parents have proactively protect their children by using online content filtering software – considered as one of the best free parental control software to hide 15 types of harmful content on the Internet, including:
- Horrifying content like gore, accidents, ghosts, violence, murder, terrorism, etc
- Content about stimulants, addictive substances such as alcohol, beer, marijuana, drugs, etc
- Content with aggressive elements, hurting others like Hate speech
The special thing is that this extension is completely free, helps to minimize your child’s access to harmful content, ensuring a healthy online environment for your child but at the same time, not invading their privacy rights.
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