What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this social networking site lets tweens and teens to communicate with people they don't know but uses humans and software to protect kids’ privacy and safety. A live staff member moderates the chat room during the hours it’s open. Staff moderators approve photos, videos, and articles kids post and write. Filtration software monitors comments, forums, and blogs and passes flagged content onto staff members for approval, but parents should bear in mind that no filtration software is perfect. Kids can send e-cards to each other if they know the recipient’s email address or username and the sender’s email address is disguised.
What kids can learn
- producing new content
- friendship building
- respecting other viewpoints
Responsibility & Ethics
- following codes of conduct
- honoring the community
- respect for others
- digital creation
- social media
- using and applying technology
Engagement, Approach, Support
The many short articles about celebrities, sports, and games are in line with teen and tween interests and the tools for self-expression through blogs, forums, and profiles get kids personally invested.
Kids are the creators here, so they are personally invested in helping to enforce rules so their content can stay. The freedom to create forums and write articles connects kids who are into the same stuff.
There's a resource section for parents and teachers and a companion site in Spanish.
What's it about?
Is it any good?
There's so much to look at on this busy, buzzing site that it feels a bit overwhelming right from the start. But, the short articles about celebrities, sports, and games are in line with teen and tween interests and the tools for self-expression through blogs, forums, and profiles gets kids personally invested in an online space of their own. Though the site's moderators seem to go to great lengths to ensure privacy and safety, teens and tweens still have their moments; they flirt, get mad, support and insult each other, are funny, express sadness, act cranky, and so on. So, it's no guarantee that certain comments or behavior won't be offensive or objectionable to certain kids -- or parents.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about online communities and the safety issues involved when you participate in them. What information did you include in your profile? Did you make sure not to include any personal information? Are you aware of the rules for the chat room? Do most of the users seem to stick to those rules?
Find out who kids are talking to online. Check out the kids on their friends list as you would their real life friends.
Encourage your kid to start a forum about their favorite hobby.