i deal with a 7/8 year old daily!!! the only time she gets online is when i or her mom enter the url... and then it's only to select game sites... as far as email.. her dad gave her a yahoo email acct!!! we changed the user/passwd!!!! but anyway, any site she connects to is usually game realted, but we've told her that she is to use a single name/pass for all the game sites (nick/disney/etc...) will this relax over time, yeah to some extent... will it ever get to the point that she can roam as she pleases..sure..when she has her own place... or when she can tear down a computer/write code better than me!! other than that, i'll block the firewall and change the passwd to the machine she uses!!! i don't think she's ready to challenge me yet!!! peace bruce bedouglas at earthlink.net -----Original Message----- From: thelist-bounces at lists.evolt.org [mailto:thelist-bounces at lists.evolt.org]On Behalf Of David Kaufman Sent: Friday, August 01, 2003 4:58 PM To: thelist at lists.evolt.org Subject: Re: [thelist] Kids on the net rudy <rudy937 at rogers.com> wrote: >> Have any of you parent 'volters come had to deal with this yet? >> If so, what worked for you and what didn't? > > here's what i did -- i warned them that there are bad sites out > there, that contain all kinds of bad stuff including hatred, > misinformation, stupidity, and porn > > [more good stuff snipped] > > basically, the parental filter that i've installed is their good sense +1 to all of that. my daughter has been online since she was 9 (she'll be 15 next week!) and the only thing i'd add is to make sure to stress to them that they should use only made-up nicknames when chatting and posting to web boards, etc. and to *never* give out their real name, address, phone number or even the name of the town they live in, or the school they go to, to anyone they meet online. she tended to be a little *too* trusting of her chatmates (at the time it was Xena's web-based chat boards and fan sites). i stressed to her that *no* one that she met online needed to know where she lived or her real name or phone number. i may have scared her explaining that with just her (somewhat unique) first name, and the name of her school, which pretty much included the name of the town, a would-be kidnapper living anywhere within a hundred miles would know exactly where to stand and wait on school days, if he decided he wanted to meet her in real life. and i stressed that online she needed to protect and control that personal information, and keep her online friends where she wanted them: online. this seemed to impress upon her that someone even *asking* for such personal information was not to be trusted, and before long she learned on her own to how to block people who IM'ed her that she didn't feel comfortable talking to, for any reason, and she had quite a long list! she soon realized that her real friends online didn't care where she lived, and accepted her nickname at face value, and it was the rest of them that were to be avoided and now brags that she can "spot them a mile away". another important thing i've always done, and i think this is perhaps the *most* important thing, after security, is to just occasionally ask her where she's been hanging out online and get her talking about where she goes and what she does. show an interest. let them know you're interested and concerned about their wanderings. she's always been happy to tell me all about the latest cool places, things and people she's finding, and i get to listen, *and* put my two cents in, *and* try to help her sort out fact from fiction sometimes, or voice my concern that the websites and opinions of skinheads' and anarchists' might not be the best place to learn tolerance and get a well-rounded outlook on society. these little conversations, and her out-of-the-blue questions about stuff she found, heard or saw on the internet, have stimulated conversations between us many times, on topics that probably never would have come up in the normal course of parent/child life that looking back, i'm really glad we had. but most importantly, i've learned *not* to come down with my instinctive parental judgments too quickly, to keep an open mind, and foster a trust between us, that she can talk to me about *anything*. i think she sensed that she was given that *respect* to make her own informed choices, and her judgment has been all the better for it. kids really do care what they're parents think of them. and i think the pride she felt the first time i noticed her blocked list, and said something like "wow, *no* one can talk to *you* unless they behave, can they? good job!" or complimenting her on her new nickname, or choice of fanciful hometown (she's lived everywhere from Albania to Zimbabwe, as far as her online friends were concerned) was more important to her than peeking at porn or reading "adult" stories. as she got a little older, she has always found her classmates online, and i think they communicate more electronically than we did in person! in fact, i do think that rather than becoming introverted (like her father, as i'd feared) she's made *more* and better friends among her real life friends, after getting to know some more online, as people tend to open up more to a PC than than they would in school, or in their normally peer-pressured social cliques, for some reason. the rules have relaxed quite a bit, now. i trust her judgment completely and the only real restriction now is that the broadband ceases to function at 9:30 on school nights, and 11:30 otherwise. this of course is *completely* unfair, and *nobody* else is treated like this by *their* parents. every single one of her friends is allowed to stay up all night *long* chatting on AOL (to hear her tell it). but i've always stuck to my guns on bedtimes and the need to get off the computer at least a half an hour before bed. some people recommend keeping a watchful eye on your kids while they're younger and online, looking over their shoulders from time to time, and not letting them have a computer in their room, and that may make sense for some families -- i don't know - but i do feel that the use of so-called "filtering" software is exactly like telling kids they can go to the store, but not to look at the magazines. it just piques their curiosity even more :-) i'd much rather tell them how i feel about a particular type of subject matter, so they know "what dad would say", and then show them that you trust them to use their *own* judgment, encourage them to ask *us* about anything they're not sure about, and make sure they feel safe telling you Absolutely Anything without you freaking out on them (because sometimes they will, and you'll want to). i'm glad we did it this way back then, because by this age she knows a lot about the world that, had we "filtered" from her, or otherwise just told her was forbidden, she'd be now feeling old enough to sneak around and find out what the big deal is with sex and drugs and skinheads. and she wouldn't even know what our honest opinions about this controversial subject or that bizarre corner of society is, and now at least she does. -dave -- * * Please support the community that supports you. * * http://evolt.org/help_support_evolt/ For unsubscribe and other options, including the Tip Harvester and archives of thelist go to: http://lists.evolt.org Workers of the Web, evolt !