The internet can be a scary place for a parent who is trying to keep an eye on their kid’s online activities. With Reddit having become such a popular website, what do parents need to know to keep their kids safe?
Reddit is mostly a social site, with some news sprinkled in
It’s like a social way to get news. The younger generations are not getting their news from traditional news outlets but instead turn to sites like Reddit for information. This can be educational and a decent resource to stay on top of news and current events however the information may not always be accurate or even true since it can be produced by literally anyone.
With that being said Reddit is certainly not all news and it’s not all fact either. There are plenty of rabbit holes for your kid to go down that you might not approve of so this is something you may want to keep an eye on. In a perfect world, you could get a glimpse of what threads on Reddit your kid is reading regularly.
It can be a popularity contest
Unfortunately, it does feed into the popularity contest that social media turned into, as users can receive upvotes or downvotes for their posts. If you have a young teenager, keep an eye on this, as these “votes” can certainly have an effect on self-confidence and self-esteem. You will want to make sure that your teen isn’t being bullied, or conversely, the one doing the bullying.
This is a large website
Hundreds of millions of people use Reddit every month producing threads and conversations on just about every topic you can imagine. Unfortunately, these threads can be accessed by anyone, including your child, which may lead them into content that isn’t age-appropriate.
On the flip side, Reddit can also be a useful place to gather good information as well. It can be a way for users to socially connect anonymously with other people which can be a good thing if your teenager is feeling a little unsure of himself and wants moral support. Sharing information anonymously has its advantages but it can also expose a child to some unsavory characters as well.
Reddit is unfiltered
This is probably the most concerning element for parents. There’s no filter. You have a platform used by hundreds of millions of people and there are no fact-checking or filters in place, so there are no built-in protections to keep your kids away from the material you would not allow or want them to see.
In addition, Reddit has given its users the ability to send private messages to other people on the platform. This opens up your children to receive messages from complete strangers, some of whom might have ill intentions.
Talk to your Kids about Reddit
The bottom line is that it’s important to talk to your kids and teens about using Reddit. There are some interesting threads that can provide them with a lot of good information, and it can be a great way for them to connect with other people who have similar interests or hobbies. Nevertheless, it is equally important that you discuss the inherent dangers of some of the unfiltered material that is on Reddit and what to do if they are ever contacted by a stranger online.
With a little guidance from you, your kids can safely use Reddit and steer clear of any unsavory threads on there. Express the importance of not private messaging with strangers and never meeting up with them in public.
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