PARENTING ARTICLES - TEENAGERS

Things Every Parent Should Know About Myspace.com

Myspace has quickly become one of the most popular community websites, particularly among teenagers and
young adults.  The site allows users to network with other people, play games, write on message boards, and
watch music videos.  It is a great way to keep in contact with other friends.  However, recent issues have been
brought to light about the dangers of Myspace, particularly for younger children.  While Myspace only allows users
aged 14 and up to access and get an account on the site, that doesn’t prevent much younger children from
entering in false information and getting their own Myspace page, which can open them up to a number of
dangerous things like sexual predators.  As a parent, it’s important to know some key points and features of
Myspace so that you can protect your children from harm.

First and foremost, just recently the site changes its terms and conditions.  Now anyone who is 14 and 15 years
old cannot see or be seen by anyone else unless they are already approved on that person’s list of friends.  
Before, anyone could click on children’s Myspace pages and see their pictures, find out where they lived, and get
insight into their minds and what kind of things they like (such as movies, music, and other activities).  These
things are prime targets for criminals, since they can use that information to reach out to children and give them a
sense of trust.

Another important new rule that has recently been put into place by Myspace is that no one 18 or over can access
anyone’s profile if they are under the age of 18.  In the past this was different, so fortunately Myspace has
changed this policy as well.  Children under 16 only show partial profiles so that predators cannot get their
information.  In order to become friends, the person must know the other individual’s name or email address,
making this a very effective security measure to prevent predators.

As a parent, it’s important to help regulate your children’s time on the site.  A good idea is to help your child
create his or her profile, so that you know what’s being put on their page.  Then create a password that only you
have access to.  This can help limit their time on Myspace, and you can control when they log on.  While Myspace
can be a good way for kids to get in touch with friends and connect, it can also be dangerous.  Various lawsuits
have been brought to Myspace recently because of crimes happening as a result of meeting from the website.  
This has prompted them to become even stricter with their requirements for getting a page.  The company just
recently hired a Microsoft security expert, and has now posted some tips and advice for parents.  In addition, they
have a large staff that constantly monitors the site’s activity.  This can be invaluable since in today’s day and age,
since technology is so prevalent, however it is ultimately up to the parent to be sure their children are not
exposing themselves to potential harm.  
Presented by: Laurel Ann Browne, Webmaster - www.ChildParentRedirection.com
Web Content Provider - Internet Marketing Services Company