A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this app.
What parents need to know
What's it about?
When installed on a kid's phone and connected to a parent's account, the OYOTY robot scans what kids post to their Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram accounts. When kids post personal information, photos with lots of skin, or possibly offensive phrases, Oyoty starts a series of questions that encourage kids to consider whether what they posted was safe and appropriate and helps them "fix" it. After three days, if kids don't edit or remove the content, or they adjust their privacy settings, parents get notification of the issue. Along the way, parents can adjust how much information they see about their kids' feeds.
Is it any good?
Step-by-step guidance gets kids thinking critically about the content they post in their social media accounts, though the range of content that can be flagged for review is limited. Oyoty deserves credit for being a nice step up from simply blocking kids from posting certain kinds of content or allowing parents to see everything a kid is posting. Rather, the Oyoty system aims to actually teach kids what is appropriate and safe to post, why it is or isn't safe, and how to fix it on their own. Parent monitoring is a necessary and essential piece of the process. But though there are ways to adjust these settings, rather than putting parents in the helicopter-cop role, the default is that parents get a generalized summary of what their kids are doing. In that way, kids are empowered to take control of their own actions and fix their mistakes by themselves -- or mark questions for discussion with their parents. In the name of safety, however, if Oyoty flags something and kids don't fix it within three days, parents do get a more detailed notification. The main downside is that the algorithms are currently set to detect only a few types of content, meaning that there's still a wealth of inappropriate things kids could post that won't be detected. Given that, this is a great start and can be a nice critical-thinking tool, but parents should not rely on Oyoty as their sole means of educating their kids about and/or monitoring their kids' social media activities.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the kinds of content Oyoty flags. Why is it inappropriate to publicize personally identifiable information like phone numbers and addresses? What about the things Oyoty doesn't flag? What other kinds of content might not be appropriate?
Encourage kids to think about their digital footprints. Remind them that everything they post can be searched, copied, and broadcast and is permanent. Ask them to consider things such as what kinds of things people might learn about you based on what you post.
As soon as your kid creates accounts on any social media site, help them review and set their privacy settings.
Read tips on how to help kids manage social media. Talk to them about the pros and cons of using social media. Discuss how to do so safely, and keep lines of communication open so kids feel comfortable bringing up problems or questions they encounter.
- Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android
- Skills: Thinking & Reasoning: decision-making, thinking critically
Emotional Development: perspective taking, self-awareness
Communication: multiple forms of expression
Responsibility & Ethics: following codes of conduct, making wise decisions
- Price: Free to download
- Pricing structure: Free to Try
- Subscription price: Two free months then $5/month
- Release date: October 12, 2016
- Category: Education
- Size: 37.50 MB
- Publisher: Privately Sarl
- Version: 1.0.3
- Minimum software requirements: iOS 9.0 or later; Android 4.1 and up
For kids who love social networking
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.