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Kids talking to classmates on instant message?


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#1 saxa

Posted 28 November 2012 - 06:11 PM

So I have just come across DS who is 9 talking to a few of the girls in his class on some messenger app he has downloaded this afternoon.

My DH is currently on a plane and I'm not sure how I feel about it.

He had a bit of paper one of the girls had written the app name and their user names on, I have just taken the iPad off him and read what was written, most of it was just silly who do you like in class what are you doing.

I was really not quite prepared for this messenger stuff at this age.

I'm probably a bit more concerned about it as our school had recently having a massive issue with year seven kids and Facebook and online stuff, some pretty terrible things have been said and done as a result of this behaviour at school.

So unable to discuss with DH at the moment have others had this come up at this age??

As I said for now I have taken my iPad away from him but just not sure how else to address it!

#2 SeaPrincess

Posted 28 November 2012 - 06:16 PM

My children don't know my iTunes password, so they can't download apps without me/approval.  I also have it in my settings to request the password every time.

Edited by SeaPrincess, 28 November 2012 - 06:17 PM.


#3 Gone-Country

Posted 28 November 2012 - 06:20 PM

I would allow my nearly 12 year old, but not my 8 year old to use chat apps. And my kids also know way better than to download anything without my permission! It would be an instant loss of privilege in this house that's for sure.

#4 saxa

Posted 28 November 2012 - 06:21 PM

Actually my iPad usually asks for my password before downloading any new apps - off to check my settings!

#5 Expelliarmus

Posted 28 November 2012 - 06:25 PM

This mostly doesn't bother me, they know how to be safe and only talk to people they know. My DD12 uses Kik and Instagram. I did delete Instagram from DS - he put it on DH's iPod - as he is 9 and I don't want him hooking up with randoms, he was coming across a lot of unknown profiles and isn't cluey enough to filter them. So at 9 I would discourage it too. 11 is our age for IMing.

Edited by howdo, 28 November 2012 - 06:27 PM.


#6 TenOfSwords

Posted 28 November 2012 - 06:26 PM

If you monitor it closely, I don't see why not? How would it be any different to him chatting on the phone?

#7 mitty82

Posted 28 November 2012 - 06:32 PM

We went through this a few weeks back, I thought yep just inicent chatting. Until I randomly walked passed my daughters room and said hey let me take a look at what you are doing on your tablet.

What I read ohmy.gif mention of rape, sex and other stuff which i know year 7s all know about but OMG. Swear words like F and a few others. Was very surprised to see my daughter had used some swear words but the other stuff was from some year 7s in her class. What an eye opener!!
I can tell you know that i have blocked the boys from her friend list and only two girls is who she can talk to at present.

#8 adnama

Posted 28 November 2012 - 06:32 PM

I would be setting boundaries, I would be annoyed that they downloaded something without permission, but as long as you have a close eye whilst he is on chat I don't see a major issue with it.

#9 saxa

Posted 28 November 2012 - 06:35 PM

I do admit my initial reaction to him was a bit OTT!

I was horrified to hear of the bullying and such going on amongst the year 7 boys at our school recently, some of the stuff being said on instant massage and Facebook was really disturbing 2 of the kids being bullied have not been at school for a few weeks because of it. From the little I know the parents of the bullies were the last to know so all I can really conclude is lack of supervision of what they are up to online?

I have had a talk with DS and told him he is not to be using it for now and also about not downloading anything without permission again.

I will leave it at that for now and DH can have a further discussion about it when he gets home - if he gets home tonight flying into Perth!! The weather is crazy at the moment!

#10 FrogIsAFrogIsAFrog

Posted 28 November 2012 - 06:38 PM

It's really hard to know what to recommend, isn't it? Technology moves faster than I can keep up!

DS 11 has many ways of chatting online (through his sports club forum with other mates), on Minecraft, via email. I don't mind it at 11, at 9 I would be a little hesitant.

I think starting out with chatting in 'controlled' online environments is s good way to start (where he chats with real life friends only), and is taught safety/ etiquette etc by a watchful parent.

I would not be cool with him using a password for downloads without permission, lol!

#11 mumto3princesses

Posted 28 November 2012 - 06:38 PM

I wouldn't let my 9yr old twins talk online like that.

They only have access to my ipod sometimes but can't download apps. If they are playing with the ipod then its not connected to the internet so there would be no way for them to download anything anyway. And if they are using the computer its in the loungeroom and I keep an eye on them.

Although I recently had quite an embarissing thing happen to me even though I do try to keep a close eye on them! One of them managed to go into my facebook (have app on my phone) and friend request a Year 6 boy! Considering one of them pointed him out to me that weekend about 6 times, then her grandma at least 3 times, then her Aunty twice and then came home and told her dad she saw him I'm pretty sure which one it was LOL. I think I'm going to have trouble since she only just turned 9yrs old!


Their class has a class blog that they have to participate in but all conversations are talking about whatever that fortnightly topic is and it is closely monitored by their teacher.

Talking about who you like in class can lead to who you don't like etc and kids end up getting hurt so I wouldn't want mine doing anything like that. And I don't think they should get comfortable with talking online about what they are doing etc. They don't understand at that age about internet safety.

#12 BlondieUK

Posted 28 November 2012 - 06:40 PM

It all goes back to the concept of digital citizenship - how what we do online is as important as wat we do face-to-face.

For starters, I wouldn't let a child that age use a tablet/laptop/computer anywhere but the family room or kitchen when I am around. It means you can monitor what they are doing, and it also means they'll think a bit more carefully about what they are saying if they know an adult might see it.

Have a look at this http://www.digitalcitizenship.net/
It has great resources for how to teach children about the safe and appropriate use of technology.

#13 janeway

Posted 28 November 2012 - 06:45 PM

My 10 year started out chatting with her friends only using an app. Turns out you can randomly add people, one of her friends befriended a random guy, talked to him for awhile, she then passed on his username to my daughter & other friends, they were all talking to him for a few days. Some of DDs friends told them their real names (my daughter used her "Internet" name thank goodness), the school they went to & photos of themselves! The guy told them he was in high school in the same suburb & eventually asked the original girl for a naked picture. She freaked out, the other girls freaked out, one of them told one of the boys in the class who in turn told a teacher.

Police were notified, but there isn't really anything they can do as luckily it didn't go too far.  But these are smart girls who were educated on cyber safety only a few weeks before this occurred. I have countless times talked with my children about the dangers of the Internet, I monitor them (clearly not well enough!) I have access to all her passwords etc. have spoken about how putting a photo on the internet means it will be out there forever, etc... She just didn't perceive the situation as dangerous & she just thought the guy was funny & she was bored. She wanted to delete the app herself after the experience & now uses FaceTime only to talk with her friends.

#14 andieinvic

Posted 28 November 2012 - 06:52 PM

My dd 10 had access to instagram but unfortunately her and her bestie decided to continue a playground spat online. Besties dad got involved in the online nastiness and I've banned all Internet chatting for now. The whole thing left an awful taste.
Im sure I'll have to let her hook up online again at some stage, but honestly would rather not! I'm actually really shocked and surprised, this is my oldest, sensible and "good" dd, before this episode I would have pretty much said I trust her online.

#15 HubbaBubbaMumma

Posted 28 November 2012 - 07:03 PM

QUOTE (SeaPrincess @ 28/11/2012, 07:16 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
My children don't know my iTunes password, so they can't download apps without me/approval.  I also have it in my settings to request the password every time.


Same rules here. We are extremely strict with our kids in terms of Internet usage.
QUOTE (andieinvic @ 28/11/2012, 07:52 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Im sure I'll have to let her hook up online again at some stage, but honestly would rather not!


Please don't take this as me having a go at you, but actually, no you don't have to let her hook up again.
I think that sadly so many kids use the 'but everyone else is on Facebook/messenger etc" and even more sadly a lot of parents 'fall' for it and let them.
My kids are 15,13,12 and 10 - no Facebook, no messenger, none of it. ALL Internet usage is done at the dining table, never in rooms. Mobile phones are checked and iPods are password protected and they don't have the passwords.
I know that I will not have to have these discussions with them like some that are listed because I just say no.

#16 BlondieUK

Posted 28 November 2012 - 08:02 PM

QUOTE (zlca_mummy @ 28/11/2012, 05:03 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Please don't take this as me having a go at you, but actually, no you don't have to let her hook up again.
I think that sadly so many kids use the 'but everyone else is on Facebook/messenger etc" and even more sadly a lot of parents 'fall' for it and let them.
My kids are 15,13,12 and 10 - no Facebook, no messenger, none of it. ALL Internet usage is done at the dining table, never in rooms. Mobile phones are checked and iPods are password protected and they don't have the passwords.
I know that I will not have to have these discussions with them like some that are listed because I just say no.


As long as you are also explaining why you have made these choices, so that when they are old enough to make their own decisions, they have the information they need to not get sucked into the worst of the internet/messaging.......

#17 Covert

Posted 28 November 2012 - 08:13 PM

QUOTE (zlca_mummy @ 28/11/2012, 05:03 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
My kids are 15,13,12 and 10 - no Facebook, no messenger, none of it. ALL Internet usage is done at the dining table, never in rooms. Mobile phones are checked and iPods are password protected and they don't have the passwords.
I know that I will not have to have these discussions with them like some that are listed because I just say no.


I work in Sex Crime and in particular Online Child Exploitation.  This is exactly the message that we preach to parents whose children have become victims of online child exploitation.

OP, if you want to discuss this with me further and get some advice from a Police perspective or what a Cybersafety Pack sent out flick me a PM.

After what I have seen going on in regards to kids and MSN I would not be letting him near it.

#18 Cheryl_v

Posted 28 November 2012 - 08:31 PM

Unfortunately Apple have changed the way the App store works in the latest iOS update and now kids can download any free app without having to know your password.  The safest thing to do is put restrictions on so you can block installing apps there.

#19 saxa

Posted 28 November 2012 - 08:37 PM

QUOTE
I know that I will not have to have these discussions with them like some that are listed because I just say no.


Personally I would still be having these discussions with your kids, whilst you can say no at home you don't always see what they are doing at friends places.
QUOTE
Unfortunately Apple have changed the way the App store works in the latest iOS update and now kids can download any free app without having to know your password.


Ok didn't realise that! I went and checked mt settings and it doesn't have the store my password in iTunes checked - so now all free apps don't require a password!! Frustrating!


#20 jayskette

Posted 28 November 2012 - 08:38 PM

What is the app? "Whatsapp" comes to mind - it is just a free SMS/IM thing. If your kids did heaps of SMSes it would amount to the same thing.

I am of the opinion the world is moving too fast for kids NOT to have an online presence at all, but I am still definitely with the "all electronics done in the family room and supervised" camp. I treat this the same as sex ed - the more knowledge you have the better but it will not necessarily mean you will disobey your parents and overdo stuff.

#21 peking homunculus

Posted 28 November 2012 - 08:49 PM

We don't allow online chatting while the kids are at Primary school. That includes no multiplayer Minecraft.

I just don't feel kids are ready to communicate in this way until they are older.


#22 HubbaBubbaMumma

Posted 28 November 2012 - 08:55 PM

QUOTE (BlondieUK @ 28/11/2012, 09:02 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
As long as you are also explaining why you have made these choices, so that when they are old enough to make their own decisions, they have the information they need to not get sucked into the worst of the internet/messaging.......


Absolutely,  we always talk about online safety and how what ever yo put online, stays online and you have no control over.  The message is very clear to them why we do it.

QUOTE (Covert @ 28/11/2012, 09:13 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I work in Sex Crime and in particular Online Child Exploitation.  This is exactly the message that we preach to parents whose children have become victims of online child exploitation.

OP, if you want to discuss this with me further and get some advice from a Police perspective or what a Cybersafety Pack sent out flick me a PM.

After what I have seen going on in regards to kids and MSN I would not be letting him near it.


Thank you! You would be amazed by the responses I sometimes get when I say the kids don't have Facebook etc  and our rules. People look at me like I'm a freak!
QUOTE (saxa @ 28/11/2012, 09:37 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Personally I would still be having these discussions with your kids, whilst you can say no at home you don't always see what they are doing at friends places


We do talk to them. They know the rules and the consequences for breaking them. The only people they visit know our views and they can only go to visit if we're confident in their ability to stick to them.






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