Teens, Sexting & Punishment? What do you think?

Let’s talk cellphones, sexting and teens.

There is a lot in the media about sexting. Every topic from teens committing suicide over sexting issues, to adults sharing inappropriate visuals with youths. But, here’s my question, when sexting remains between youths only, what does it mean and who’s the more responsible or accountable party, the sender or the requester? What should the punishment be for a kid who received an unwanted sext?

 

As images and user-generated content are our specialty, we continually watch and study the circumstances around who is sharing what. Since we know that generally speaking when adults are involved with sending or receiving illicit content with minors, the responsible party is usually the adult; there are many questions left unanswered when the senders and receivers are underage.

Do we convict all teens who have participated in sexting as sex offenders and have their future forever changed by an image? Consider the following before answering.

 

What if……

  1. Your child received a sext message, yet, your child didn’t request it.
  2. Your child sent a sext message, but was coerced into sending it?
  3. Your child was part of a group that received the same sext as a joke, yet the image is very real?
  4. What if your child sent an inappropriate image assuming it would stay between the intended recipient, but now the recipient has used the image against them by sending it to many others?
  5. What if an inappropriate image of your child was taken and shared without your child knowing?

 

Intent may be the last, yet most important variable in the sexting phenomenon. Since there have already been cases of young teens criminally charged and thus registering as sex offenders for the transmittal of child pornographic material, this punishment can’t be a “one size fits all” solution. It would be worth discussing and sharing, due to the many circumstances that do exist. As parents or guardians, Iconsidering the aforementioned scenarios, how do we punish young sexters? For me,  I’d rather know that the punishment for a 13 yr old who made a singular bad decision about sending a sexually explicit image will fit the instance, versus, the punishment for a group of 17 yr old boys collecting nude images from all of their classmates in order to coerce more out of them.

If you still aren’t certain that sexting is a big enough issue to discuss, watch the below video about a recent group of teens caught in a sexting scandal and then answer.

 

What are the appropriate punishments for requesting or sending sexts.

 

Sexting Scandal Could Bring Criminal Charges.

Is Your Family Wireless?

Today's Wireless Family

 

Great Tips for Parents Provided By CTIA!

1.  Be sure to use the tools you have on your device and provided by your wireless carrier to protect wireless communications.

2.  Be sure to educate what your wireless rules and expectations are for family use.

3.  Read the App ratings for the apps your children are using.

4.  Educate your children on appropriate times to use their devices!

 

 

ImageVision Receives Startup America Award at SXSW

 

 

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Anna, TX, March 15, 2013 – Startup Texas, with Startup America and the Austin Chamber of Commerce, hosts the second annual SXSW event: A Celebration of American Startups Saturday, March 9 at ACL Live at the Moody Theatre. The event celebrates startup pioneers and the dynamic future of entrepreneurship in America. This year’s America’s Startups SXSW Quick Pitch Winner is ImageVision.  Gabriella Draney, Executive Director of TechWildCatters, nominated ImageVision, a TechWildcatters’ alumni from its Summer 2010 inaugural class.

 “When CEO Steven W. White explained to me his vision was to make computers see, I realized ImageVision was building disruptive technology versus ‘me too’ technology,” Draney said.

 Accompanying the award-winning ImageVision team are influential entrepreneurial leaders from around the country, including Steve Case, CEO of Revolution (co-founder of AOL) and current Chairman of Startup America Partnership, Scott Case, founding CTO of Priceline and current CEO of Startup America. Others include Tristan Walker, Andreessen Horowitz EIR, former VP of FourSquare, Brad Smith, CEO of Inuit and Dhani Jones, NFL star.

 “Being acknowledged as one of America’s Startups top technology startups during SXSW is validation of our original vision,” Co-founder Mitch Butler said. “Bringing to market visual object recognition which can help big brands and apps alike provide a visually safe user-experience and help monetize UGC (User-Generated Content) is the value our customers realize.”

 “ImageVision is representative of the type of startup any community across the country would be fortunate to have,” Startup America Partnership, Scott Case said. “They’re building amazing technology and building the startup community in the Dallas area by creating jobs.”

 

 ABOUT STARTUP TEXAS

 Startup Texas is a regional arm of the Startup America Partnership. As a not-for-profit working in coordination with the White House Startup America initiative, it believes entrepreneurship is critical to the country’s long term success. Startup Texas is a grassroots, entrepreneur-led initiative and serves as a rallying point to bring all the elements together – entrepreneurs and startups, local talent and universities, activities and mentorship, large companies and local government – all to help startups grow.

 ABOUT TECHWILDCATTERS

Tech Wildcatters is a Forbes Top 10 ranked mentorship-driven seed fund and technology accelerator  in Dallas. Each year hundreds of companies apply to the program and ten to fifteen of them are invited to participate. The companies get up to $25,000 in seed funding, intensive top-notch mentorship and the opportunity to pitch to angel investors, venture capitalists and corporate development teams at the end of program.

ABOUT IMAGEVISION

 ImageVision helps marketers see the big picture. Using real-time, visual image recognition, analytics and AI, ImageVision provides a scalable services platform for advertisers, agencies/publishers and ad networks to unlock and monetize the value of UGC.  Improving the user experience is powering key innovation at some of the world’s largest brands, like Facebook, Apple, Yahoo! and Photobucket.  These companies, as well as others, trust ImageVision to secure and monetize their UGC data.  ImageVision – the visual advantage.

 

Media Contact

Kimberly Westphall

kimberlywestphall@realnewspr.com

(214) 215-6858

 

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APP Chat & More: Smartphones, Apps and Access!

 

 

 

Instead of choosing an app to give an overview of, I thought a discussion for parents and the ways children use smartphones might be equally helpful especially since news and statistics are forever floating around about which phones are the best, which apps are most popular, who’s sexting whom and cybersecurity is the new frontier.

 

Starting With The Basics:

Recently, one of the nation’s leading experts on American Internet use, Pew Research Center, published a study discussing the importance of smartphones and teen use. According to the Center’s findings for Teens & Technology 2013, smartphone adoption by teens is growing and how teens are accessing the Internet is as well.

 

Pew Stated:

“The nature of teens’ internet use has transformed dramatically — from stationary connections tied to shared desktops in the home to always-on connections that move with them throughout the day,” said Mary Madden, Senior Researcher for the Pew Research Center’s Internet Project and co-author of the report. “In many ways, teens represent the leading edge of mobile connectivity, and the patterns of their technology use often signal future changes in the adult population.”

 

Why They Stated it?

Of the individuals polled, Pew found that:

  • 78% of teens now have a cell phone, and almost half (47%) of them own smartphones. That translates into 37% of all teens who have smartphones, up from just 23% in 2011.
  • 23% of teens have a tablet computer, a level comparable to the general adult population.
  • 95% of teens use the Internet.
  • 93% of teens have a computer or have access to one at home. Seven in ten (71%) teens with home computer access say the laptop or desktop they use most often is one they share with other family members.

 

 

What it Means for Parents.

Although I only chose to include stats from this study, it isn’t the only organization putting out research and I am certain most of us have seen many a teen walking around engrossed with some type of digital happenstance in their hands. Don’t believe me, attend a highschool event and count the teens on their phones! But, what does this mean for parents? If our teens are accessing so many things from their phones, are you aware of what those access points are?

 

 

 

 

What Can a Smartphone do?

Your typical smartphone has an ocean of possibilities good and potentially bad for teens. Most have very powerful cameras and video capabilities, they have access to the Internet depending on the plan a parent chooses and if they have Internet access, then they have access to a multitude of information including free apps in the store for the device. Whether just messaging or Internet and messaging, the possibilities are endless for what they can access and where they can share. Here’s a quick snapshot of what happens on the Internet in just 60 seconds. As the amount of activity has increased over that past 10 years, I think it’s safe to say that the availability of technology only increases internet interactivity and as the smartphone trends continue to rise, the amount of activity shown below will skyrocket.

 

 

 

 

 

Like Many Others, Here’s What My Kids Have:

I provide iPhones which of course have image, video and texting capability. I supply them with huge data plans and unlimited text and calling because its simply cheaper than paying for overages, as I have written before, one son is capable of sending more than 5,000 texts a month. But, with their phones they each have access to the app store where the info, capabilities, and possibilities can’t ever be measured adequately.

 

This Means:

My kids can take images and videos and share them online or through messaging.

They can access anywhere on the internet AND they can access the Apple iTunes store where they can download ANY free app. Depending on the requirements of that application, they can share freely any content they wish, text, images or videos. If they have funds on an iTunes account, they can purchase apps as well. Once they have downloaded an app, what they do within that app can often go undetected. Although I spot check phones, which means at any date or time I can pick up their phone and check what they have messaged or have received, yet who really knows where or what they’ve been sharing and I am not really certain I have the kind of time it will take to break down their phone to guarantee their ultimate safety.

It’s like a maze once they have a full access to a smartphone. Anything can be shared and in multiple ways. While some apps require additional chunks of a data plan, are parents aware of exactly why their child has used so much data? My theory is no.

Apps are different and constantly changing meaning in order to keep abreast to all smartphone digital capabilities, a parent would have to be simultaneously engaged with their child’s phones and interactions which is too time consuming! While many apps and locations a child visits from their smartphone can be harmful, there are too many positives to a child having instant information. By information I mean, my sons have a scientific calculator built into their phones with the iPhones. With that calculator and a great educational YouTube video, my kids can be self-sufficient when solving the hardest quadratic equations. They learn and use technology the way their world has taught them, instantly and independently. Of course there are individuals out there that might debate my sense of pride for their independence, I’m not a mathematical individual and tutors are hard to find at 9 pm when homework happens.

As a parent, I probably won’t turn off Internet access, and I won’t make them wait for parental approval for every app download. I do spot check and I do question how apps are being used and I even open up the apps on their phones to see what the app is about.

 

What’s on Their Phone:

  1. Know the type of phone you are giving your child. Learn what built in safety options there are. For the iPhone 4, you can choose to turn of GPS locators, which apps can use the phones contacts, if the phone can access in-app purchases and content ratings. You can find these settings under Settings, Privacy or Restrictions.
  2. Know what access you are giving them with the plan you choose. (ie. Full Internet access or just messaging).
  3. Know the apps your child has access to and read the app reviews for them.
  4. Know the age requirements for each app.
  5. Re-visit your child’s phone often. They may have changed certain permissions specifically to access other apps.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Where Are The Access Points?

Every app is different and this means that you need to know what type of access your children have to content, strangers or what sharing abilities they have. App reviews by other users often provide a great deal of information!

  1. Pay attention to data usage. Some apps require more data, such as YouTube and a jump in data could indicate a new found interest. For instance, If your child’s data is double what it was last month, do some research to find out what they are accessing.
  2. Do a search online if you aren’t certain about the app they are using. There are a lot of informational stories and blogs about the hottest apps out there.
  3. Understand what safety settings are out there. ImageVision has the EyeGuardian for Mobile app now that will do a lot of the heavy lifting for a parent. While it doesn’t prevent content from reaching your child, it will monitor and alert a parent when harmful content has been accessed.
  4. Don’t be afraid to put safety settings in place. Children are pretty open to conversations about their devices. They want to be able to access all that they can so help them to do it safely.
  5. Have the digital talk. Let your child know that while sharing is common, fun and seemingly normal to them, there are predatory individuals looking for ways to access them and their content, or even identities! Also, a single inappropriate image could follow them for life!
  6. Don’t be afraid to check your child’s phone. As minors, they are entrusted to you for guidance, access, and education. While your son may not have asked for a sext, it doesn’t mean he isn’t liable for possessing child pornographic material.
  7. Don’t be afraid of the unknown. Often when talking with parents, I realize many parents don’t check a child’s phone because they aren’t sure what the phone or their child is capable of. Dive in, research and ask questions. The Internet is a very big, very busy highway. Hold their hand and teach them how to safely cross!
  8. Find alternatives! If your child is in to watching streaming videos and the app they are doing it through doesn’t have the safety precautions against inappropriate content, do your research and find a site that does.
  9. View your child’s smartphone as a doorway. While opening it, don’t let them visit their new digital world alone. If they know how to properly use their devices and what some consequences of sharing too much might be, they can make better decisions on their own.
  10. Continually seek safety information and updates for the phone and apps your child has. Viruses, malware and predators look for new ways to access information and app makers look for new ways to protect their subscribers!

I am hope this blog will help some parents to become better acquainted with their child’s smartphone and access points. As our technology advances and our accessibility to the advancements increases it may not always be easy to keep up with a device’s capabilities, yet it will always be necessary!

 

Pick up Your Child’s Phone This Next Weekend and Start With an App Count!

I start with the apps because in my opinion, these are more of a threat for my sons. Once you do put settings in place on the phone, then you will need to ask these questions too:

1.  How many apps do you have on your phone?

1.  What are these apps?

2.  Who can you share with? Just friends? Strangers?

3.  What can you share? Just texts? Images? Videos?

4.  What is the last thing you shared through these apps? Why?

5.  Are you sharing personal information?

Until next blog, be cybersafe! If your child has an Android-based smartphone, check out EyeGuardian for Mobile, it’s the newest parental smartphone-monitoring app able to show you images, texts and videos your child has shared and much more.

 

EyeGuardian teammate, Stephy Ochoa

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

App Chat – Snapchat, Are Your Kids On It?


 

 

 

 

Parents, its been in the news and the buzz is that Snapchat can be used by teens to aid in private sexting sessions. Available in the Apple App store and on Google play, Snapchat is available for Android and iOS devices and is an image sharing app where images can be taken, drawn on and shared quickly with friends using the app. For brevity, the argument is that while the app claims to give users only seconds to view an image, teens can still take screenshots of images and share multiple places.

 

In the App Store 12+


I began studying this app by reading through the reviews found in the app store. A bit concerning were the top reviews found for the time period were from individuals requesting “sexy” or “dirty” pics!  Therefore, the app was rated for 12+ for the potential problems with mature content, specifically:

 

-       Infrequent/mild profanity or crude humor

-       Infrequent/references to drugs and alcohol

-       Infrequent/mild mature suggestive themes

-       Infrequent/mild sexual content or nudity

 

 

I Signed Up!

First, let me say, the idea is great and I can say I had a ton of fun working the app. I can see a lot of uses outside of just goofy images to friends. Sign up was fast, easy, and clean without a ton of features that block usage as was intended by the creators. However parents, here’s what you need to know if your child is using the app.

 

  • Sign up is extremely easy, even for a very young child.
  • Within the app, kids can link to all of their contacts using the app or invite all of their contacts into the application.
  • Images can be modified adding comments, good or bad.
  • Images can be screenshot, despite the instant elimination feature. THERE IS ENOUGH TIME TO SNAG IMAGES!
  • There are no rules in the Terms of Use against sexting with others.
  • Snapchat offers no real deterrents against inappropriate image taking.

 

Who Can They Share With?

Users can allow the app to access all of their contacts and then they have the option to invite those within their contact list to join the app. To me, this option will always pose a threat for teens. Invites and connections are made too easily.

 

 I Took a Pic, Now What?

Once an image has been snapped, users of the application can draw or add text on top of it before sharing it. This adds concern that kids may add inappropriate words or shapes to tease others.

 

However, the biggest threat to a child’s safety is that while the app may delete an image that has been shared within seconds, there isn’t anything keeping the recipient from taking a screenshot of it. The homepage of the app suggests users would have to be very quick to be able to take screenshots, but, I am not nearly as fast as a teenager at taking and sharing images, and I did it……easily.  Simply put, what this function allows is that if your child decides to send an illicit image thinking the automatic delete function will protect them, whomever they sent the picture to can take a screenshot of it and keep it or transmit it as they wish inside and outside of the app wherever mobile image uploads are allowed.

 

 

Just Tell Them Something!

Finally, although I do like the app, I am a bit disappointed by their Terms of Use recommendations. Snapchat states simply to “Have Fun” and to basically not use the app to share or transmit spam, viruses, bugs, racist remarks, threatening content or unlawful content. Yet, if they can specify no racist remarks, then certainly they can specify “no sexting”. Considering the media has accused this app of being THE “Sexting App”, I would think they would try and encourage teens to stay clothed and make smart digital decisions.

 

Best Advice to Parents.

Parents, because the app doesn’t automatically save the images, going through your child’s phone to find any images may not help identify if they have inappropriately used the app.  My suggestion would be to sign up for the app. While signing up and letting the app identify potential friends from your contact list, if your child’s name pops up, be certain to add them as a friend. I would think that seeing mom or dad’s name in the friend-list would make them aware that you know what is going on. At least that’s how it worked for me. Yes son, mom is using Snapchat. :)   Snap ya later!

 

ImageVision’s software aims to keep kids’ smartphones safe

Dallas Business Journal: Feb 8, 2013, 5:00am CST

ImageVision’s software aims to keep kids’ smartphones safe

photo by Jake Dean

Parents seem to be more comfortable in giving their car keys to a 16-year-old than giving them a smartphone,’ says ImageVision co-founder Mitch Butler. 

By Ghianda Becerril, Staff Writer

About five years ago, Mitch Butler, co-founder and chief operating officer of ImageVision, realized that his daughter was not safe from the exposure of inappropriate content through social media and technology.

After his 13-year-old daughter received a mass text message containing nude images, Butler, along with CEO Steven W. White, decided to try to help other parents put a stop to similar situations while educating them about the risks of social media.

“That text made me realize that even if a kid is a good kid, that kind of thing can happen,” Butler said. “We have developed software that will help protect that individual.”

Dallas-based ImageVision builds software that identifies explicit images, videos and texts within computer servers and mobile devices. The company’s newest software, EyeGuardian, also detects images and texts in social media. It’s a tool for parents to help their children be safer on Facebook, Butler said.

“Parents seem to be more comfortable in giving their car keys to a 16-year-old than giving them a smartphone,” Butler said. “We want to help parents have a dialogue of being safer online.”

EyeGuardian allows parents to keep track of friends, tagged images, liked posts, messages and photo albums containing threatening language or suspect activity.

Parents can monitor more than one profile on the software. “Parents are able to log in to their account and keep track of their child’s Facebook activity through our technology,” Butler said.

Gabriella Draney, executive director of Tech Wildcatters, a startup accelerator company based in Dallas, said that online security is extremely important. “You have to know that it lasts forever. It is important to know what is being put out there.”

The algorithms created in the software email or text a parent when there is suspicious activity on a child’s account.

“Our greatest challenge is developing algorithms to develop accuracy. Because what we are doing visually has never been done before, we face a lot of skepticism,” Butler said.

The ImageVision team is now working on integrating the same technology with Instagram and Twitter.

While EyeGuardian is only for Facebook, ImageVision is selling the same technology to other companies looking for logo detection, text detection and even object recognition.

“On a photo-sharing site, our technology can detect images with object recognition. For example, someone who uploads a picture of their dog can be connected to other dog lovers. It is these visual analytics that we are providing to companies,” Butler said.

This type of technology can help provide a better experience for the user, according to Butler.

Jon Shapiro, director of cyber security at the University of Texas at Dallas, says it’s important for parents to understand how children behave on the Internet.

“The technology problem is still in the way,” Shapiro said. “While this software is only part of the solution to preventing cyber bullying and cybercrime, parents need to take a much more active role in the education process. Even really educated people can be compromised and attacked today.”

Name: ImageVision

Business: Online security image detection

HQ: 312 N. Powell Parkway, Anna, TX 75409

Ownership: Private

Top Executive: Steven W. White

Employees: 16

Annual Revenue: $2.5M

Phone: 469.361.6585

WEB: ImageVision.com

 

gbecerril@bizjournals.com | +1 214 706 7124

App Chat: Are Your kids on Skype?

This week’s App Chat is focused on the Skype application. Again, because I am an iphone user, my experiences with the Skype application are based on how I explored the app through my smartphone and then I visited the online version as using a smartphone, subscribers to Skype can contact anyone with the app phone to phone or phone to computer.

 

According to Skype…..

My workout of it was fun and for businesses, friends or families geographically separated the app is a great way to stay connected, however, for minors on the app, I think parents should know how this application works.

 

Here are the biggest concerns:

 

  • Stranger access
  • Access to strangers
  • Search words can pull up anything linking to unmoderated content possibilities
  • Video/camera options
  • File sharing
  • Computer, phone, ipad – no differentiation

 

Persons with Skype can freely contact anyone with a Skype account all around the world despite the device. Chat, messaging and video chat are free. There are no real safety features in place to keep children from contacting strangers or having strangers contacting them. Although there are options for settings, we are aware that children don’t often read or understand what settings are applicable.

 

Here’s How Your Child Can Use Skype

If your child has an account, they can use any search term to find others and other can use any search terms to find them. As a parent, I used some pretty harsh terms to see what kids may find. I was shocked. Again, I will not expose the specific terms I used to search while in Skype, but, if you can think of the word, its there.

 

Setting up the app, Skype asks for email, phone number and other personal identifying information. Although not all is revealed publicly if a teen were to choose specific safety settings, children might not understand the ramifications of not keeping such information private.

 

Once set up, the most enticing feature (in my opinion) is the video chat for teens. Video chatting is free and easy for teens to use. There are no filters stopping a teen from inappropriate video sharing. Also, as in many other apps, there are no protections in place to protect a child from someone else taking a screenshot of them and then sharing that content.

 

Additionally, file sharing through the app is available. Meaning, your child could be chatting or video chatting with others and large content files could be shared instantly making them open to receiving inappropriate content without anyone monitoring what has been shared.  Do you know what’s in that file a stranger sent your child?

 

Here’s what Skype says about appropriate use:

 

However parents, there are no protections against inappropriate behavior!

 

 

Parents, if your child uses this app on their phone or on a home computer, our recommendations are to know who their contacts are. Grandma is ok, but Pierre from France may not be! Also, make sure security settings are in place.

 

 

Updates in EyeGuardian!

Hello EyeGuardian Friends!

 

As promised we have some new and updated features to help sort the content that gets shared on your child’s Facebook page.

 

Previously, we scanned and showed you all of the content related to your child’s Facebook account on the same report, only to be separated by Suspect content or all content.

Although we feel that any content associated with your child’s Facebook account or any content your child has access to via pages they “Like” is important, we listened to our subscribers for a better more organized way of understanding what’s happening on their child’s Facebook page.

 

EyeGuardian now organizes the content associated with your child’s Facebook page first by what they have directly shared and or received THEN by what content may be indirectly associated with their page.

 

When you log in to your EyeGuardian account and then go to your Dashboard, choose a profile you would like to view. Once in that person’s profile, notice that the “Wall” box is unchecked.

 

This means that the content that comes up, is content your child has participated in or has directly received. This can further be filtered by what they are sharing that may be “Suspect” by checking the “Suspect Only” box.

 

 

 

 

If you want to understand what your child’s overall Facebook page has on it, be sure to re-check the “Wall” box and EyeGuardian will bring in everything that has happened on your child’s Facebook page.

 

 

 

Both ways of looking at content can be applied to Images and Messages. In other words, if you just want to see the messages your child directly shared or the images your child has directly shared, EyeGuardian will automatically do this when you open up the profile of that child. If you want to see all content that is associated with your child’s Facebook page, be certain to check the “Wall” box!

 

 

 

 

 

Scan Profile Now Feature!

 

Typically, EyeGuardian will scan a Facebook profile every 24 hours for inappropriate content such as foul language, threatening language associated with cyberbullying, sexually explicit language, suicidal speech, and all images shared.

 

However, sometimes the 24 hr wait is too long and you need to know what content has been shared immediately. When you need it, EyeGuardian can scan one of your profiles and return the most recent of shared content whether images or private Chat messages. For a limited time, the Scan Profile Now feature is free for subscribers, so give it a try!

 

 

Don’t forget to refer your friends and family! Just click on the image below and we’ll take you to the easy form to get them started!

 

APP Chat – Instagram Review For Parents

 

 

Due to the recent Vine controversy, I thought perhaps parents might want or need additional information about the applications children might be using with their smartphones. I am an iOS user, and this means my experiences are based on my options of what is accessible through the Apple app store and user options or processes for using the app for iphones.

I chose first to sign up for and research the most common apps beginning with Instagram. Overall, I liked the app. It was easy, fast and fun to use however, I’m not certain it’s safe enough for my teens. I study and use social media professionally and personally which means I have to be conscientious about my use and safety.  Outside of those roles, do people or teens understand what and how they are sharing?

I gave it a full work out parents, and like many other social sites, the dangers here are the usual suspects of sexting, stranger access, and exposure to inappropriate content.

Here are the areas of the app I found most concerning for child use.

Upon signing up, I agreed that I was above the age of 13, but other than that, no real safety guards when using the application.

  • Stranger access to my content
  • My access to stranger content
  • Multiple social network image sharing capability
  • Geo-location tagging
  • Exploration of sexual imagery
  • Application access to child’s contact list
  • Private sharing without parental knowledge
  • Image copy and manipulation outside of application.

 

Here’s the quick and easy view of how your child might be using the app:

  • Taking images through the application.
  • Using an image already stored on their smartphone to share.
  • The app will ask to pull in “Friends” from the child’s contact list stored on his/her phone.
  • Instagram will suggest other “Users” for your child to follow. These suggestions aren’t obvious as to why they are suggested “Users”, but some are famous with many followers.
  • Once an image has been taken or chosen, the subscriber can apply various borders or image filters for sprucing up the image before sharing.

  • Once satisfied with the image after taking and adding borders or lighting filters, it’s all about the sharing. Images can be shared through Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Flickr, Email and Foursquare.

 

  • Others from any of the social media sites the image has been shared on can comment or interact with the child, ESPECIALLY if someone is tagged in the image using a site such as Facebook when sharing.
  • Geo-tagging while sharing an image is possible exposing exact location of the child who has posted the image.
  • Using the “Explore” feature within the application, searches using “sexually explicit” terminology will bring an image compatible with the language often. Although I will not reveal the specific terminology used for my test searches, I can say that any terminology associated with sexuality is fair game.

  • Utilizing the control filters, if shared on Facebook, any child can block a specific individual from viewing what has been shared on a page, including parents!
  •  If the image has been copied, there are no stamps or text that will appear on the image if the child wishes to take the image to social media sites outside of the application.  Some photo-sharing websites place text stamps identifying where the image was originally taken and stored at and unless purchased, will use this text as a “copyrighted” image stamp. Instagram does no copyrighting. Any image taken and shared can be copied and shared at will.
  • When sharing within the application, strangers can easily reach the child and attempt to interact.
  •  Messages are private if shared in the application between the child and his or her friends only. If the parent is not a friend on the application and the child isn’t sharing all photos onto a more public site such as Facebook, the parent may not know what images are being taken and shared or know all of the contacts a child has in his/her contact list.

 

 

 

 What does Instagram say about the app?

The information provided within the app store rates the application for ages 12+ due to sexual, themes, drug/alcohol references, profanity, and infrequent/mild sexual content.

 

Help them with their settings!

Settings are typical to most social networking sites by offering security settings that allow things to be private or public. However, weigh the time it takes to read and understand the setting possibilities against the decision to choose a quick image sharing application and it becomes obvious that ease of use is how this product is designed.  Below, I’ve included links to the application’s Privacy Policy as well as a link to how controls for individual privacy settings can be used. Parents, have a read through because ANY social media site can be safer WITH proper privacy controls in place.

From the Blog of Instagram – Privacy

http://instagram.com/about/legal/privacy/

 

Controlling Your Visibility – Privacy & Safety Center

http://help.instagram.com/116024195217477/

 

Check out next week’s App Chat when I give a break down of Skype! It’s fun to connect with a real-life chat, but what are the dangers for child use?

 

Have an App you want to know more about, send me a message at feedback@EyeGuardian.com and I will do my best to give it a run through!

 

Stephy – EyeGuardian for Facebook Team member!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Should XXX Porn Star Be Allowed To Teach?

You can read the statistics about the amount of individuals or companies using Facebook or you can listen to your kids when they iterate how the day went with comments like “then she posted it on Facebook and everybody saw it” if you want to know just how important social media is. However, recent reports indicate that those Facebook posts are way more memorable than we realize.

Microblogs or social media posts such as “Status” updates hang around in our memory way longer than faces or sentences from books according to a study by Laura Mickes and colleagues from the University of California San Diego. When tested, it seems that these brief posts or musings from our friends and family trigger the most basic language capacity of our mind with reader comments being the most memorable. At over 30 million posts being made an hour, including your favorite brands, this social thinking albeit shortened complete idea way of sharing is more meaningful than just something to do.

 

The importance of a posting can go many ways though. Let’s face it, we know that kids share too much, people make intoxicated posts and the ads on our pages are abundant. But what happens to those posts when we no longer mean what we meant “back then” when the posts were made?

 

 

 

News just this morning says that an intermediate schoolteacher who previously had a career in the porn industry lost her appeal towards the school she was fired from. The commission that made the decision to no longer allow her to work as a teacher in their school stated that even though she didn’t work in the industry while teaching, the content is still out there and will be forever.

 

Although one side of the coin may believe that we all have the right to become or do differently than our previous actions, even some kiddos get the idea that posting such content isn’t a great idea as it was a group of her students that found the content and shared it with school administrators.

 

Some youngsters are even making and sharing memes letting others know that “sexting” may not be a good idea. Some of the memes popping up around the web are pictures with text that have taken on a viral status with captions such as, “hey girls, your boobs, belong in your shirt.” While this may be one attempt to get a message to the masses, the same method is being used to cyberbully others online.

 

Remember what you or your kids posts are never fully deleted from the Internet, if you don’t remember this, others will.

 

 

What are your thoughts? Should the XXX porn star be allowed to teach?

Visit our social media sites to put in your two cents worth, but please, keep it clean……someone might remember you for your posts!

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