Apps to Keep an Eye Out For

 

You never want to be known as a helicopter parent, but it is also a parents job to keep their children safe. Keeping up with teens and pre-teens can be exhausting in itself and adding technology into the mix only exacerbates it. To keep in the know we’ve researched the top Apps and Websites to educate yourself on and to help keep your kids safe.

 

Ask.Fm

If you were familiar with the website Formspring- This app is essentially a 2.0 version. The app allows people to ask questions and invites comments anonymously from users. It also allows you to post anonymous questions. Kids sometimes target one person and the questions get vulgar. It is cyberbullying with no chance of ever getting caught. A user’s account can quickly fill up with a stream of anonymous, hurtful messages that may or may not be coming from people you know. In an extreme case back in 2013, it was linked to the tragic death of 12-year-old Rebecca Ann Sedwick. Rebecca became one of the youngest members of a growing list of children and teenagers apparently driven to suicide, at least in part, after being maligned, threatened and taunted online, mostly through a new collection of texting and photo-sharing cellphone applications.

 

Kik Messenger

This app has landed itself on multiple lists for parents to watch out for. Kik Messenger, commonly called Kik, is a freeware instant messaging mobile app from the Canadian company Kik Interactive. KiK does not offer any parental controls and there is no way of authenticating users, thus making it easy for sexual predators to use the app to interact with minors.

 

Hiding Apps Aka-Calculator%

Sedgrid Lewis, online safety expert, notes that these apps look like a normal calculator app but when you enter a password using the buttons within the app they can hide all inappropriate pictures. “It’s a key way teens are hiding their nude pictures from their parents,” said Lewis. This app or more commonly used by boys to keep lued photos private and are usually sent in mass messages.

In 2015, there was a headline-making case in a Colorado high school where teens used apps to hide a huge sexting ring from parents and school.

 

Omegle

Omegle’s tagline is “Talk to Strangers!”. This website came out back in 2008 and is very similar to Chatroulette

Omegle is a free online video chatting website that allows users to socialize with others without the need to register. The service randomly pairs users in one-on-one chat sessions where they chat anonymously using the names “You” and “Stranger” or “Stranger 1” and “Stranger 2” in the case of Spy mode”. It is famous for sexual predators trying to lure young children into inappropriate behaviors. Nothing good can come from this site.

Timothée Chalamet and Harry Styles Talk Ups and Downs of Social Media

The British magazine, i-D, recently published a conversation between Harry Styles and TimothĂ©e Chalamet, with Harry Styles – singer, songwriter, actor, and former One Direction bandmate – stepping into the role of interviewer. Chalamet, an Oscar-nominated American actor, becomes the one who is quizzed by the musician. Touching on a wide range of topics, the duo divulge information about their lives, how masculinity has evolved, and their stances on social media.

Styles started off by stating, “I think that’s the main positive of social media,” when referring to the many more ways for us to engage. He followed with, “There’s also a lot that I find super dangerous about social media…On a personal level, I feel a noticeable change in how happy I am when I?m not on social media.” Perhaps taking his advice and staying away from social media is something everyone can benefit from. Social media cleanses are very popular.

Many celebrities have taken breaks from Instagram and Twitter in a very public way. SNL comedian Pete Davidson deleted his Instagram after people voiced negative opinions about his whirlwind romance and engagement to singer-songwriter Ariana Grande. Millie Bobby Brown, the 14-year-old “Stranger Things” actress, deleted her Twitter account too, after becoming a homophobic meme. Actress and singer Selena Gomez recently posted to Instagram with her caption…

Update: taking a social media break. Again. As much as I am grateful for the voice that social media gives each of us, I am equally grateful to be able to step back and live my life present to the moment I have been given. Kindness and encouragement only for a bit! Just remember- negative comments can hurt anybody’s feelings. Obvi.

Styles pointed out similar findings, “I’m very aware that if you go on social media, and look, you can find whatever you’re looking for. If you’re looking for bad comments, you’re going to find bad comments. But people still do it. It’s like this weird self-torture.” This is something most people can relate to. If you go fishing for compliments, you will get them: if you look for hate, it will find you. Unfortunately, that is what social media has become.

Chalamet and Styles didn’t stick to only bashing social media, however. Mentioning the Arab Spring, new ways to connect, sharing news, and becoming involved were just a few of the benefits that can be reaped by maintaining a presence online. It just goes to show that even the famous and talented feel the toll that social media can sometimes bring.

Published by GetnSocial