Live Q&A Keeping Your Teen Safe on facebook – Webwise



Live Q&A with Simon Grehan, NCTE and Webwise

Keeping Your Teen Safe on facebook

Held Monday 13th June, 2011



Mykidstime Hi Folks, we’re going to finish up now and say thanks to Simon for joining us. For any questions that we didn’t get to or any further questions you might have, email us at [email protected] and we will make sure Simon sees them. Stop by the Webwise Ireland facebook page for more information on keeping your child/teen safe on the internet.
Simon Grehan Thanks
Belinda Jane Higgins Thank you – that was very interesting.
Etain Wilson thanks
Karen McCarthy Thanks!
Lèon Fox Thanks Simon, feel a bit better prepared now
Jennifer Buttner Thanks – was very enlightening.
Annette O’Donnell Thanks
Vivienne Lawlor Great idea mykidstime! Thanks for this.
Mykidstime You’re welcome Vivienne

Mykidstime Simon, for parents who are not familiar with facebook can you briefly explain how they would tell a personal profile versus a page thanks
Simon Grehan Shops, popstars, and business can set up pages – sometimes called Fan pages. They are very similar to profiles bu they can’t request to add you as a friend or won’t be suggested to you as possible friends.
Mykidstime Thanks
Simon Grehan Facebook only permits authentic profiles. They encourage you to use your real name and not use a pseudonym.
Unfriend Fake Profiles – “Not a Real Person” Pages “like” to become a FAN. Profiles request for FRIENDS. Fans follow info, friends share with each other.
Mary O Dowd When people put photos on face book who owns the photos?
Karen McCarthy You own all of the content and information you post on Facebook.

Etain Wilson My 11yr has an email account, I have his password – is this safer for him than letting him on FB or am I fooling myself.
Simon Grehan With email; only people who have his email address can contact him. This isn’t always the case on FB. You should talk to him about SPAM and not opening mail from suspicios addresses
Etain Wilson ok thanks for that, at the moment he opens his email on my laptop so I look over his shoulder

Annette O’Donnell Chrissy Mac Neill talked about viruses on Facebook. How can we stop our teens from taking in viruses through Facebook?
Simon Grehan These are usually caused by Apps (applications). Its a good idea to read comments about an app before installing it. Or simply google it.

Mykidstime Karen posted on our wall earlier – “What can I do about a teen disco that keeps asking my daughter and her friends to be their “friends” on Facebook? There are 3 guys behind this profile and they refuse to use a Page.”
Karen Stewart Kelly block them
Simon Grehan Well you can report them to FB. They don’t permit businesses to act like individuals precisely to prevent this type of spamming.
Simon Grehan You can do this by clicking the report this person link under their profile picture.
Hazel Ellis Tell your daughter that she cant be friends with them and explain exactly why. Sometimes you just have to expose them to the dangers.
Karen McCarthy I report them but others don’t – teens are carefree and don’t seem to realise the problem (a lot of adults too!). The Teen disco has 100s of “friends” – is there anything else that can be done.
Karen McCarthy My daughter and immediate friends know …. reporting them doesn’t do anything, my friends have also reported them yet they are still there?
Kelley Cherryfield post a link here and we will all report them
Mykidstime Karen, if you email Simon at [email protected] he will look into it for you
Karen McCarthy Thanks, I will.
Maura Fitzpatrick l would block them as well
Karen McCarthy Reported and blocked and I even emailed them – they told (emailed) me to look after my own daughter and mind my own business about others.
Kelley Cherryfield charming

Mykidstime What are the signs that my teen is being bullied on FB and is there any way of finding out out/tracking this?
Simon Grehan In my experience it is always an extension of offline bullying – so signs will be the same. If your child is avoiding school, seems upset or angry, stops going to activities that they previously liked.
Simon Grehan Another sign is quickly switching off the screen when you enter the room. Although there are several possible reasons for doing this.
Karen McCarthy yep, like chatting to boys 🙂
Sandra Ronan Know their pass work and check regularly
Alison Gately Yes Sandra- that’s how I found out about some major bullying! I went to a good seminar recently about teens online, and he said all parents should be doing that!
Vicki Jones-Mordaunt Yes agree, make sure you know their password, and check regularly, also remind them not to tell other people their password and if on friends computer do not click “keep logged in” or “remember this password”

Annette O’Donnell Do schools educate about facebook and other social media?
Simon Grehan Short answer – it depends. There are SPHE and CSPE resources that can be used to teach the Junior Cert curriculum but they aren’t mandatory.
Lèon Fox They really should be
Mykidstime Do you know if there are any plans to make that mandatory Simon?
Annette O’Donnell Would be great if they knew about privacy settings and how to keep safe.
Simon Grehan The Think B4U click resource is very strong on privacy – see
Simon Grehan No plans to make it mandatory currently. We have an enabling curriculum in Ireland that gives a great deal of discretion to schools in areas like this
Karen McCarthy Great link, Im doing a computer summer camp for teens this year and was looking for some safety/securtiy stuff to include in it.
Annette O’Donnell Where are the camps?
Belinda Higgins Sounds like an interesting course, Karen – where is it?
Mykidstime Be sure to email us the details Karen so we can list it 🙂
Edina Almasi My kid had an internet safety course in primary 5th class.
Karen McCarthy Waterford. Thanks, I’ll add it tomorrow.

Mykidstime Siobhan asks: “what advice about facebook should I give my teen, I’m pretty clueless myself”
Simon Grehan Check out to get some good advice for yourself. there are lots of pieces of advice for teens:
Valérie Maout Uí Aodha Have a look: – a FB addict :-/
Simon Grehan Don’t reply to messages that are meant to annoy you. This is exactly what they want.
Simon Grehan Many sites allow you to decide which parts of your profile can be accessed by others. Assume that everything is public unless you are sure that it isn’t. Opting for private doesn’t always mean that only your friends can see your profile. In some cases, everything you put on your profile can be seen by everyone but only your friends can post comments or IM you.
Lèon Fox I didn’t know that Simon, thanks!
Chrissy Macnei
Advise …. do not add people that you dont know, if you get a friend req ensure its a friend of a friend and check with that friend first … Be careful what you click on as there are LOADS of viruses going around , and most look legit
Simon Grehan If something is posted on a website that is intended to be hurtful to someone, your first step should be to report it to the owners of the website and get it removed.
Jackie Kennedy Sat down with my two nieces and we went through all the security settings and made their page ‘safe’ – the secrets are dont write anything about anyone else , and dont tag photos… do not add anyone that you dont know – and DO NOT add any any adults… even mums of friends etc as what shows on the adults page can be seen and may not be suitable – Two key things were if they want to go on facebook, you are a friend to their page – you are not going to check up on them but you need to be able to look in a the page occasionally. a friend of mine did this with her daughter and its working well!
Jackie Kennedy ps a friend of mine oncce said to me that imagine its like a pub… you know the person who you have arranged to meet but you dont know the other 10 people who are with them… so remember just because they are on a friends page doesnt mean you allow them on to yours
Jackie Kennedy and lastly DO NOT click on any of the stupid stuff ie whos stalking who etc only respond to people you know not these auto things that are thrown up !! stay safe !!
Jackie Kennedy ooops sorry didnt realise this was a Q and A session sincere apologies
Mykidstime That’s ok Jackie, we welcome all input! and thanks for joining us!!

Jennifer Buttner Wondering what is your opinion on monitoring teens facebook page – should you have the password if they over 13 ?
Simon Grehan I think you need to display an element of trust. I would definitely insist on being their ‘friend’ but I wouldn’t go as far as wanting to know the password unless I had serious reasons to be concerned.
Simon Grehan BTW – NEVER share your password is a golden rule. Even/especially with your best friend. It is amazing how many people do.
Karen McCarthy If you are there when they set up and know enough to advise them, it will be easier to trust them. I recently allowed my daughter to restrict me from seeing her wall – she is 14.5
Lèon Fox They shouldn’t have anything to hide at that age, they are still so young
Karen McCarthy My Mum and Dad and other family members are her friends and 4 of her friends are also my friends, so I know what is on it but she doesn’t like to think that I’m watching her all the time. We talked about it and its fine. She has been on since she was 11 and always with me watching.

Lèon Fox What are the hazards of facebook that we should be aware of for our teens?
Karen McCarthy people setting up profiles for businesses and spamming people with friend requests – who knows who is behind some of these businesses…they should not see anyone’s personal info. especially teens.
Lèon Fox That’s the great thing about the pages v profiles, businesses should only use pages
Simon Grehan I’m often surprised when talking to teens that their number one concern is time wasting. They worry that their studies will suffer because they are spending too much time on FB.
Etain Wilson that’s interesting!!
Lèon Fox Agreed, I find that a problem for myself!
Simon Grehan ‎@Karen McCarthy – this is not permitted by Facebook. If you report these profiles they are usually shut down.
Karen McCarthy Thanks Simon but it I think it takes more than a few people to report somethings before they come under FB’s radar.

Mykidstime My older teen plays FB games but needs more friends to get to another level, is it ok for him to add friends he doesn’t really know to play these games? I don’t think it is a good idea, but he says I don’t have a clue.
Val Robus How old is he?
Eileen McNamee No not good idea,
Mykidstime That question came in by email earlier so not sure what age
Val Robus If it’s an older teen it depends on the age.
Karen McCarthy If he insists on it, ask him to create friends lists, he can restrict gaming friends from seeing his personal information.
Sandra Ronan Defo a very bad idea !
Alix Dixcey-Parsons i have the same problem with my daughter. its not ok for them to add people they don’t know, these people have access to all their info, photos & everything they do on fb. i have requested (on her behalf) some of my TRUSTED freinds (that play these games) to be her freind, so she has them a neighbors on these games………
Hazel Delaney I would not be happy about it BUT I do have friends that are only on my friend list for games I play and I have a “limited access” group set up and they all go in there, so they do not have access to my photos etc. Like I say, I would be wary but it depends on their knowledge of security on FB. It really can be a science to double check all the settings to get them just right AND FB has a habit of putting new friends into a group called “other” so the security settings do not apply. Would he let you access his account so you could check it/set it up. I regularly go and double check everyone is in their right group. Hope that makes sense.
Jennifer Archer What I would suggest is add these friends for the games there is a way you can block them from seeing certain things on your page but allowing him to add them as neighbours etc.. You can create a list and restrict them from seeing photo’s or your wall.
Chrissy Macneill I only joined fb to keep an eye on what my kids were up to and to ensure that farmville and frontier were legit games …. and now they have given them up and i am addicted to the stupid games … but they still play occasionally , but we do take on friends of fb friends again just to get up levels or to complete tasks… but i do keep a very close eye on all activities on all accounts .
Simon Grehan The problem with adding ‘friends’ that you don’t know is that it compromises your privacy. They start to get access to photos and info that you have restricted to friends. It complicated their privacy.
Fiona McKillop as far as I know, you can change setting for your friends so that they can’t see your wall etc., but I’d be very wary of it personally
Edina Almasi I made 2 facebook account for my kid and myself to. One for gaming and one for friends. The first one is anonym without any personal information, photo etc. I think this is easiest than the complex privacy control wichone is changing all the time.
Karen McCarthy You can block certain lists of people from seeing your information – creating 2 profiles is against FB terms of use and shouldn’t be encouraged. 🙁

Mykidstime Susan asked earlier: my 9 year old wants to be on facebook and i keep saying no but its proving hard to keep saying no. should i be strict about this?
Cynthia MacDonald i’d say no, just teach responsibility, and make sure you know the password!
Eileen McNamee Yes, still too young, FB have age rules, too many odd people on it!
Suzie Duffin I set my girls up with an account they are 8, but its just for playing the games like fishville etc, there is another that runs hand in hand with ur own facebook account called togetherville, they have their own log in but you have ulti
mate control over it, she should check it out 🙂
Caroline Cahill My 8 & 7 year old ask me all the time. I’ve had to set them up with their own profiles on my laptop because they kept looking at my facebook. I told them 13 because I think I read somewhere on facebook that’s the age they recommend you should at least be. Easier said than done in my opinion!
Sandra Ronan No way she is way to young
Simon Grehan Ultimately parents know best what is right for their children. That said Facebook (FB) terms and conditions don’t permit children that age to be members of the site. I would stay firm on this. I always compare it with getting the bus into town on their own. If you aren’t happy for your 9 year old to do this then I wouldn’t let them use FB.
Catherine Terry yes, children are too young to be on facebook when of primary age. It can be an open forum for type bullying type behaviour and creates alot of issue around chat and photos posted. I would say, secondary school is time enough.
Simon Grehan The reality is that a quarter of 5th class and half of 6th class are using social networking sites. The big question for parents is – will they be on the site anyway even if you forbid it? This is the worst case as they need you most to direct them when they start socializing online.
Suzanne Cahill We let our 11 year old join at xmas, he was 10 then. He said the whole school was on it and he was right, within a couple of days he had over 100 friends. I have his password and keep an eye on it and he can only be friends with people aound his own age
Karen McCarthy Many parents may not be on social networking sites, so directing their children is hard – parents need to educate themselves.
Val Robus She’s too young for these kind of sites. Maybe try or Club Penguin.
Suzie Duffin My childrens friend list consists solely of close family,and a couple of my friends which were all accepted by me. Their page is set up so they do not see posts in their news feed. also their privacy is all tight and secure as is their info. As long as you maintain control on the account and check in on it frequently…(i always log the girls in and run thru any requests) it can be ok.
Simon Grehan BTW – Fascebook don’t want users under 13 years old and will cancel accounts once they are informed that this the case.
Simon Grehan RT @Karen – check out
Catherine Terry The reality is that alot (not all) but alot of parents cannot monitor all facebook usage no matter how much they would like to. Just because a parent has log in details does not ensure they know what their children are chatting about online with peers, what comments their friends are posting, what photographs they are seeing etc. Children do not need to be part of social networking until they are able to detach themself from it if issues occur. We all know how children can be upset when an issue arises amongst a friend or small group of friends. Allowing half your school/peer network to comment on an issue that arises publically, is not, in my opinion a wise decision.
Karen McCarthy ‎@Simon – thanks, I use it all the time 😉
Susan Dunne There is an age limit for a very good reason! There is always things like spam appearing on pages & it doesn’t matter how vigilant u are u can’t stop it! My godchild is 10(I don’t agree with her being on it) & recently I saw a video link for a stripper that was spam but she would have seen it as soon as she went into her page! I say be responsible, they can play game elsewhere!

Mykidstime Welcome to our Live Q&A with Simon Grehan of NCTE and Webwise. Simon is our guest expert tonight and will take your questions about Keeping Your Teen Safe on facebook. So thanks to Simon for taking the time to join us and remember to refresh your screen (F5 button) to see new questions and Simon’s responses. You can also switch from Top Posts to Most Recent just below our photos at the top of our wall.

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