It’s important for parents to stay as up-to-date as possible about social networks and other sites that kids are frequenting. Facebook, perhaps one of the most popular sites that kids are on, recently announced new privacy settings that every parent – whether their child is online now or plans to be in the near future – should know about. Laid out below is a guide for parents that explains the new features, both for parents’ own knowledge and for their kids’ safety.
The changes seem to fall under two general categories – updated privacy settings on users’ own profiles, and changes to how users share content with one another. As stated in the Facebook blog, the changes allow users to:
- Adjust who sees what is posted at the same time it’s posted – users can now edit their privacy settings in the same place that they edit profile information and post status updates. This lets users avoid going into the separate “Privacy Settings” section of the website that was confusing and unclear to many people.
- Control who tags them and their photos – users can review any photos or posts they’ve been tagged in before that content shows up directly in their profile. They can also review tags that other people add to their own photos.
- Do more when they detag – before, users could only untag a photo of themselves if they didn’t want to have their name associated with it. Now, when a photo or post is detagged, a window pops up that lets users take additional action. This includes the removal of the tag, a request that the photo be removed and the option to block the user who uploaded the photo.
- See what their profile looks like to others – by typing in a name directly into this feature on everyone’s profile, users can see exactly how other people – friends, friends of friends, etc. – can see their profile. This allows users to update any privacy settings as they see fit, as well as lets users better understand what different settings mean.
- Tag non-friends – before, users could only tag people they were friends with. Now, they can tag anyone, regardless of their status with one another.
These changes definitely give users more control over how others can view them online. By making it easier to change privacy settings and get a sense of the information that other people have access to, users can now update their settings more easily and with less confusion. However, no matter what a child’s level of privacy on social networks may be, they should never post anything damaging to their online reputation. It’s important for parents to understand the above changes to Facebook – as well as any privacy settings on other networks – and for them to emphasize the importance of a positive and secure online presence for their kids.
Are you familiar with the various levels of privacy settings on Facebook? How secure is your child’s account?