Easy Tiger Parent System™

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Jennifer McLeod

How Do You Stop Or Deal With Manipulative Parents?

Born To Win!: Success Strategies for Young Businesses and New Entrepreneurs

20 July 2010

Internet Safety for Children

Last week's article looked at the many ways in which your child can possibly be harassed, humiliated and stalked online. It has presented the internet as both a useful tool for children but also as a trap for the vicious circle of being bullied. In order to prevent continuous harassment, parents have to properly educate and inform their children about internet security and the dangers of the cyberspace.
Children of different age groups utilise the internet for varying reasons. Therefore, parents should keep in mind what is a valuable resource for children, and what is not. All children generally like to play games on the internet. According to their age, it is advisable that parents preselect a number of games which carry value for the child's internet experience. Games with an educational purpose can be as fun for children as any other game.
It is crucial for parents to supervise their younger children's activity on the internet as to prevent harmful experiences online. Encourage your child not to use his or her real name when they play games online and make sure they know that they should never give out their address or other details to strangers.
With the growing popularity of social networking sites, even younger children will eventually want to be part of an online community in order to talk to their friends, share pictures and links. Photos should always be selected together with your child. If necessary, explain to your child why certain photos as well as links and other information should not or cannot be considered for publishing online. Always check the social networking site's privacy settings in order to block outsiders from viewing your child's profile. Remember: your child's privacy and safety is at stake!
Younger children often act based on emotions rather than making rational decisions. This is why it is important for them to report any sorts of offensive behaviour back to their parents especially if the child feels unhappy or scared about certain things online.
As tempting as it sounds to children to arrange a meeting with someone they have met online, they have to be told the dangers of meeting a person they do not know and have to be discouraged to meet the person at all. Even though chat rooms can be a fun experience for children, they have to be told that people can pretend to be virtually anybody they want to be. Children who often use IM (Instant Messenger) should only talk to people they actually know from the "real world" and block requests from people they do not know.

With regard to emailing, children should not open emails from unknown senders as they can contain viruses or pornographic material that could be of harm to the child's psychological development. If children receive obscene material or harassing comments in emails, they should in no way reply or respond to them but keep those emails in a separate folder for future reference. In any case, children have to learn to distinguish right from wrong in the online world, and have to feel comfortable to talk to their parents or carers about their worries and concerns.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The right to freedom of speech we have been given by the Constitution is supposed to be based on the right to talk freely about government and petition it without fear of being silenced or punished. The freedom was not meant to include the public insults and harassment that are done with the purpose of destroying someone's life. Unfortunately, right now, Cyberbullying is a big loophole; it needs to be classified as slander and libel.

The problem is that the Internet is a safe haven for bullies because of the anonymity. There is not a more cowardly way to bully someone then from behind a curtain. But parents are the key. Parents need to get involved in helping solve the cyberbullying problem. If parents cared enough about their child being the bully or passing along the material as much as they care when their child is a victim, it would be a huge step forward. But then, of course, how do you know if your child is involved in cyberbullying? You need to monitor their Internet activity. Monitoring software like our PC Pandora records everything that happens on the PC. If your child is a victim, you will know; if they are a bully, you will know. Whatever the case may be with your child (victim or bully), you need to intervene. Check us out at http://pcpandora.com to see how you can be a part of the solution instead of a passive part of the problem.