What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Jelly is a free social media app on which teens and adults can ask each other questions and get answers about almost anything. The Q&A service's motto is "Let's Help Each Other," and that's essentially what users do with their responses. Need to know the translation of a Jamaican folk saying, a recommendation for a good thermos, or which scarf looks best with your new sweater? Take a photo or use one from the Internet, type a brief question (with a 240-character limit), and then wait for answers to roll in. Swipe through other users' images and questions until you see one you can answer, and post a response. Send a "thanks" or comment on responses. Although no objectionable questions or answers were observed during this review, because content is user-generated there may occasionally be content that's inappropriate for kids.
What's it about?
Sign up for JELLY by linking the app to your Facebook or Twitter account. Choose by tapping on any of 12 topics you think you can help others with. View a question by another Jelly user; answer by typing or drawing on the image, or swipe down to dismiss it if you can't help with that one. To ask a question, tap on the pencil icon, add a photo or a location, and type your question. Choose to add to Facebook and Twitter or just ask on Jelly. View answers, send thanks, and reply. Used well, Jelly can be an easy, social way to get help.
Is it any good?
Created by one of the founders of Twitter, Jelly is a fascinating information-sharing community app spanning many topics, from cooking and fashion to tech and travel. The interface, which includes images for each question, is easy to use for both asking and answering questions. Teens may even be able to use it for homework help. With one easy screen tap, users can thank others for responses, which is a nice, positive social touch.
Jelly can be an interesting way to learn about stuff all over the world; on the downside, wading through questions about restaurants in Boston or parks in NYC when you're in a state thousands of miles away, for example, can become tedious. Also, teens should be aware that users they don't know can find them on Facebook via Jelly; as a result, they could receive friend requests on Facebook from people they don't know but who have responded to them on Jelly. As the app grows and matures, more features for refining questions and answers as well as increased safety features and privacy options may make Jelly even more enjoyable and useful.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about privacy and safety. Read Common Sense's Internet Safety Tips for High School Kids with your teen to cover the basics, and remind your teen to post wisely: Even if he or she stops using Jelly and deletes the app, the content already posted remains for others to view.
Because Jelly's quality (and safety) is only as good as the questions users decide to ask and the responses others give, discuss with your teen what kinds of questions are appropriate to ask publicly and what are best to ask only to people you know well.
Remind your teen to use the cool "thanks" button to send a quick thank-you to users who take time to send a helpful answer to a question.