Technology, social networks, kids: Dangers vs. opportunities

computerAre social networks a plague or an opportunity for children? Advantages, disadvantages, dangers, opportunities – they are what you see and what you show to your child.

Social Networks and Kids

So many words have been told about social media and children. So many articles have been written. Essay writing help about this topic is available almost on every website offering writing services. They all highlight one thing: parents should protect their children from social networks. All networks should be banned. If not all are banned, then they should be controlled.

What do these thoughts mean? Are they the fears of older generation of technology or a wish to control at least somebody, at least a child? Probably both.

However, times are changing. We live in a new era with new opportunities. Social networks are the kind of technology that has changed the world and the way of communication. Moreover, they are changing the world every second.

Social Networks vs. Medicine: Feel the Difference?

What would you think of people who are forbidding to treat their sick kids with medicine just because they are too old-fashioned to perceive the development of medicine in the right way? The situation with social networks is not by much different.

Social Networks Are Good

Social networks give us unlimited opportunities:

  • Communication with people from different parts of the world. On social networking sites people find friends, colleagues, those who share their interests and ideas;
  • Help in criminal cases. Sometimes people make posts in social media that can help to investigate the criminal cases. Moreover, such networks help finding people, lost animals etc., as they reach the great part of the population;
  • The way to help shy people to communicate. Writing is always easier than speaking. If a person is too shy to communicate in, say, a class, then chatting shouldn’t be a problem. So even very shy people find friends.

However, there are reasons why some parents forbid their children using social networks.

Social Networks Are Bad:

  • Cyber bullying. People are different, there are good and bad people in the web as well. With the emergence of social networks bullying has moved to entirely different level. It can be absolutely anonymous and continue 24/7, whenever the bullied person logs in;
  • Easy surveillance. Function of location detection can be useful, though a criminal can detect your child easier when this function is on. A criminal can track the child’s movements and plan the crime more properly;
  • Less communication with real people. People replace real communication with communication in social networks. Virtual communication requires less efforts. A person can pretend to be anybody, even his favourite superhero. That can give confidence, though there are dangers as well.

Hence, Plague or Blessing?

The forbidden is more attractive. This is what you should remember when deciding whether to allow your child to use social networks or not. Yes, there are dangers. Though your child will face them anyway with or without your help.

What to Do?

Technology is something that cannot be stopped whether we want it or not. However, what we can do is to teach our children how to avoid problems or cope with them, if they get into a trouble.

Here are some tips that will help to prevent the most dangerous situations:

  • Tell your child that maniacs look like the kindest people in the world. There is nothing to do for an adult person in a chat with a child.
  • Virtual communication is just virtual communication, there is always an option to block the person and forget about him forever if he is abusive or intrusive.
  • Threats are not an option whatever the situation is. If somebody threatens your child, he or she shall block the person and notify parents and the website administration. If necessary, parents can and must go to the police. Telling “No” is ok whenever the child feels inconvenient. Doesn’t matter what others think or speak, safety should be the priority.
  • Dangers can come not only from strangers. If a close person or a family friend tries to press the child, the reaction should be similar to the case with a stranger. There should be no exceptions for anybody.
  • Parents are always there, not to judge but to help and support. Whatever happens, the child should know that he or she can come to parents and they will do everything to help.

Conclusions

Social networks are becoming more and more integrated in our lives and in the lives of our children. Being wise and understanding will help to avoid dangers and get the best out of social networking. Teach your child how to use this technology correctly, how to discover new things with it. If your child is older, show which options for career and earnings social networks open for him.

Technology itself is neither good nor bad, it is about how we use and perceive it.