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In the Fab Lane
A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this website.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this tween lifestyle magazine combines celeb gossip, fashion advice, and social networking in a seemingly safe package. But although the site is free, much of the content is actually advertising in the disguise of editorial. And while users are in control of content they receive from other members, users are unrestricted in what they are able to write on their profile page.
- Parents say
- Kids say
Is it any good?
IN THE FAB LANE sounds like a site that might be blinged out and celebrating expensive lifestyles of the rich and famous. But the tween site is actually fairly grounded with the advice it doles out. The profile pages offer a somewhat safer social networking experience than larger sites like Facebook. The biggest problem with Fab Lane is its decision to become essentially an advertising tool for businesses looking to reach the tween age. In the least, advertising should be clearly labeled, rather than disguised as real content as it is now.
Online interaction: The message forum, known as Blab is a heavily moderated feature that only allows for preapproved messages to be posted. You can make friends with other users by using a search tool that matches users up by interests, geographic location (you can search by state), and gender. Once two users agree to be friends they can send unrestricted messages to each other. These messages then appear on the recipient's profile page.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how to recognize advertising. On this Web site, it's really hard to tell what's an ad and what's not. What are some clues that Web content is advertising? Why do you think companies don't come right out and say when they are trying to sell you something?
On this site you can make friends by searching members by their interests. Do you think this is a good way to make friends? Are the friends you meet online as close to you as the friends you talk to offline?
Families can talk about tween issues. Do Web sites, like this help you through some of your issues or concerns relating to your body and self esteem? Would you prefer to talk to someone close about your problems or is it safer and less embarrassing to read advice online?