Thursday, February 24, 2011

Spy on Your Kids? Or Educate and Monitor Them?

Should parents blatantly spy on their kids and watch every move they make online?  Or should they educate their children about dangers online and monitor them? The police chief of Mahwah, N.J., thinks we should hack our kids passwords and log right in as if we were our children.  While this might be a surefire way to detect bad behavior and prevent our children from harm we believe education is favorable for the following reasons:

1) Spying suggests lack of trust and will create a collision between parents and kids, eventually causing more harm.

2) Education promotes and empowers independent thought, enabling children to make good decisions on their own.

3) Spying is only effective for so long. Eventually children will be in a position where they are not under their parent's wing and if they lack the education to make good decisions they will be at a disadvantage.

Talk to your children about the dangers that exist as they spend time online and employ products that monitor their behavior while respecting their privacy.  Empower them to make good decisions and identify warning signals on their own.  They will thank you later.