Appeals to deception and encourages media addiction, behind an innocent mask of funny photo filters!
At first glance Snapchat is a really funny app in which users can take funny pictures of themselves and their pals using all the crazy filters. And when we were first introduced to SC, thought all of that was amusing, innocent fun for our teenagers.
But beyond that, there is just no good. 1. The primary concern of parents.... The disappearing messages, I believe, were designed by the creators to cater to deceit. Even for good kids, the temptation to sneak and live a secret little life, can get the best of them, and overshadow their good intentions. (beware: Instagram recently added a disappearing messages feature as well) This secrecy makes sexting way too easy. 2. More secrecy: There is a "FOR MY EYES ONLY" section in the memories, which requires a second pin to access. 3. The friend coded emojis, trophies and the streak games encourage media addiction and popularity competition. All of your "friends" on SC are coded with an emoji of multiple emojis next to their names -these may mean BF, BFF, BFF for one month, two months, they are your BF but you're not their BF, snap streak with the person for x # days..... and the list goes on and on. Then there are the trophies, one of which we found was for sending a video snap between 4AM and 5AM. All this equals status, competition and addiction.
SC can be really fun and innocent and I wish it were just that. With frequent monitoring, continual (not just a one and done hit when they first get an account) open discussion with your kids. It's hard to pinpoint an age that it's appropriate for. I feel like teenagers ages 13-16 are in a stage on their life where they crave approval, acceptance, and hence, are easily influenced by the world. They fall prey to the dark side of what could otherwise be good, too easily.
Our daughter has transitioned from being very transparent and honest with us, to being sneaky and deceptive as the social media influence crept into her life. It is no different than a teenager getting mixed up with a group of bad friends who dilute their once strong convictions. The problem is, social media makes it even easier to get wrapped up in the bad influence. We really wish we would not have been so naive about SC from the start, but we didn't want to be TOO harsh, we didn't want to say no to everything. Well, we are now saying no until trust can be proven again and we will be using apps and programs for monitoring all device activity.
This title contains:
Ease of Play
Privacy & Safety