I just wanted to share an article that was in the Seattle Times today. For every editorial like this one there are unfortunately 100s of others that create panic in the hearts of every parent. Linda Kanpp, a parent herself, wanted to know more about MySpace and did so from her objective, open, journalist mind.
The result? She learned about some bad stuff and also some good stuff. And she advocates for parents to get more involved with their children’s online activities. So simple, yet so absent in the media today.
Like many people I am sure, I don’t take the time to read my SPAM. Thankfully, most of it goes into my Junk mail folder, and when I compare the amount I get to how much my partner gets, I consider myself one of the lucky ones.
But today, I decided to read some of it. Out of the eight (yes, only 8) messages I received, three were about sex.
1. One provided a link to where I could get Viagara for cheap. Remember, this medication requires a prescription from a doctor.
2. One told me about a fantastic product that could increase my penis size by 4 inches (10 cm). Needless to say, that didn’t really interest me.
3. Finally, I got an email boasting about a product that would stop my “premature creaming.”
What SPAM did your child get today? Ask him or her about it. It will help you learn what messages youth are bombarded with on a daily basis and potentially help start a conversation about sex. The one you have been meaning to have, but haven’t gotten around to yet.
According the the Internet tracking company Hitwise, MySpace was the most visited web site last week, reports USA Today. So it appears that MySpace is weathering all its negative press (or perhaps it is thriving because of it).
Although I do not doubt this statistic, I do have a problem with this brief article; USA Today misleadingly refers to MySpace as an “online teen hangout.” While it is true that many users of this site are teens, adults still make up the vast majority of its members. Let’s not let the press fuel the myths and culture of fear that is surrounding the phenomenon of social networking. An accurate portrayal of MySpace can help parents and others obtain a better understanding as to how it and other social networking sites work to help connect people to each other. While some may say I am nitpicking and/or arguing semantics, I believe that every piece of information can help create either a true — or false — concept of something. Something that is completely foreign to many whose only knowledge of social networking sites comes from the media.