Inspirations for Youth and Families owner Karen Corcoran-Walsh sat down with teenage blogger to gain her insight on back to school anxiety, peer pressure and also what parents should know about teens and social media. Being “popular” or “cool” still feels like it is one of the most important priorities you can have as a teen, even in today’s modern society. However, for the teens of today, popularity also includes social media, which has become a serious issue most parents are not even aware of.
Teens and social media
The who’s who of school is often the teens who are getting the most likes on social media platforms. For teenage girls most likes are often the result of sexy and provocative pictures or videos. Teenage boys are also known to post images shirtless or videos of them participating in illegal actions such as drug abuse to look cool. Teens of any gender seeking validation through popularity may feel pressured to post risque pictures or videos in the hope of getting more likes and recognition.
According to Joselyn “I’ve posted a lot of pictures just so I could get a lot of likes and it works.” She also stated “The world of teenagers has changed.” and she shares that “I’m also worried about not being popular.”
Parents need to know what their teens are sharing to the general public and should speak to their teens about what is considered appropriate information to post online. Teens are taking photos, making videos and posting private information. Posts as simple as a camera view into their bedrooms give others an inside view of the everyday life of teenagers. Teens should be careful of how they document their private lives throughout the day. Once posted this information is permanently on the internet even if it has been deleted.
When videos, pictures and other personal information are released, everyone becomes more vulnerable. To make matters worse teenagers often do not realize that as they post their intentions or actions for the day, such as going to the mall, meeting with friends or even going to the movies that they are exposing their own personal safety as well as the safety of their friends to online predators. This information is recorded through cellular location settings on their phones and their settings according to the social media platform.
Those who are the parents to pre-teens and teenagers should be sure to speak with their teens about their boundaries on social media. Teens should also be informed that the “popularity” they seek should not be earned based on the revealing images they post but images that show meaning and quality.
Check out my previous blog here.