Instafamous babies: When mums are cashing in on their kids

Flooding Instagram with highly styled photos of kids has become a worrying trend.
Flooding Instagram with highly styled photos of kids has become a worrying trend. Photo: Chris Ratcliffe

 I was at friend's BBQ recently and was introduced to a couple who had a four-month old baby.

The discussion of what we all did for a living came up and I was taken aback when the mum said she was trying to become an influencer and wanted her baby to be a brand rep and proceeded to show me the babie's Instagram account she had just set up.

I'm positive she saw the horrified look on my face and I had to ask her why she wanted to do this. But she had no answer. She had been suckered into the world of Instamums, where quite simply they just want fame for their kids and money.

The number one reason Instamums (and I'm saying mum's as I am yet to come across an Instadad) create public accounts for their children is so they can have them be paid to wear clothes and endorse brands. Isn't this just cashing in on your kids?

This is a trend that's been happening for some time now but why would you want to follow a child on Instagram and why would you want strangers to follow your child on Instagram?

You don't know who is behind the profile…how would you feel if a 40-year old man was one of your 18-month old's followers?

To the Instamums out there who have created a profile for their children or who are thinking of doing so, there are real risks to having a dedicated public Instagram profile for your kids.

Privacy

At what point does a child have the ability to say no? They are simply too young to make the decision themselves about having their photos and lives in the public domain. Yes, Instagram has privacy settings but once a photo is posted online it's there forever.

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Paedophiles are also a real concern. They are disgusting predators that doctor images of children they find on Instagram and online. They search through hashtags like #toddler and #kidsofinstagram

Negative Comments

Online bullying and trolls is an epidemic and it's not just school-aged children that are targeted. We've all seen the mummy bloggers who have been bullied or trolled online and unfortunately the same trolls make negative, derogatory and downright rude comments on children's accounts.

Overexposure

Children will grow up one day, how will they feel when they are older about being overexposed? Is the photo you're posting of them going to hurt them in the future or come back to haunt them.

The Why

The big question is…WHY? Why do parents feel the need to have an Instafamous child? No Instagram account starts off a success, for most fame creeps up and its unexpected, that's why it's really concerning that parents are purposely wanting to make their children Instafamous.

How does this benefit the child? It doesn't. It's benefiting the parent in some way.

I understand mums that create a private account for their children so they can use it as an album for relatives and to keep track of milestone. This is a fabulous idea. Just don't use hashtags or add locations.

But if you're googling "how to make my baby Instafamous" or "how do I turn my baby into a brand" ask yourself if it's really the right thing to do for your child.

Megan Del Borrello is the director of Gloss Marketing Communications in Perth