Sue Scheff: Parenting 2010 Part 3

Did you miss part 1 or part 2Go back!

Part 3 – Learn to monitor your kids and teens online in the New Year.

It can be literally impossible to keep up with our kids in school and at home, now we have to attempt to keep up with them virtually!  However, as a responsible parent, we absolutely do our best to keep up with them on all fronts.

Let’s talk about ways to keep track of where they are online.  Where is there name being placed?  Who is using their name and who is posting about them?  Are there photo’s out there floating in cyberspace that shouldn’t be?  Is your child tagged in any of them?  For teens that will be applying to colleges shortly this is a very important step they need to keep track of.  Reminder of the college recruiters using search engines to vet their applicants! 

  • Set up your Google Alerts.  It is self explanatory, visit http://www.google.com/alerts and it will walk you through the process.  Sign up your child’s name and be sure to put quotations around it.  For example “Sally Smith”.  Don’t forget to include their nicknames.  You can choose how many times a day/week you would like these alerts as well as where you want to search. 
  • Set up your Tweet Beeps.  Do you want to know if your child’s name is being used on Twitter?  Like Google Alerts, Tweet Beeps will let you know when your child’s name is on Twitter. 
  • Google, Bing, Yahoo your child’s name frequently.  What are the results? Are there questionable items?  Ask your kids about them.  In some cases with common names, this task can be tedious.  Take the time to be sure your own child’s name is not being mis-used. 

To take this a step further, you may want to consider an online management service that offers a deeper search on your child’s name:  ReputationDefender/MyChild

What is MyChild?
MyChild by ReputationDefender scours the Internet for all references to your child or teen – by name, photography, screen name, or social network profiles – and packages it to you in an easy-to-understand report. Worried about bullies? Concerned that your teens’ friends and peers are posting inappropriate materials online? MyChild searches every corner of the Internet for traces of your kids. If you want to help your teen manage their online reputation, but have felt powerless to do so, ReputationDefender is your answer!
 

Check out their cost-effective fees and services: http://www.reputationdefender.com/mychild (This is not an affiliate link, and I do not receive any referral fees or other gifts for your decision to enroll your child in MyChild) As a Parent Advocate, I believe in bringing you choices to keep your kids safe both online and off-line!

Part 1 – Welcome to your New Year’s Resolution for better parenting online

Part 2 – Creating your family Blog

Part 3 – Monitoring your child’s name online

Part 4 – Books, resources and services to educate parents online.

Part 5T.A.L.K. Learn to open your lines of communication both online and off.

References for parents to review: Social Web Tips for Teens, Chatroom Safety Tips, Cell Phone Safety Tips, Social Web Tips for Parents

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