Archive for March, 2011

Facebook: How Old Is Too Young?

Recently, my twelve-year old son asked me if he could get a Facebook account.  After  looking into it, I came to the conclusion that he could not at this time.  I explained to him the policies and reasons Facebook would not allow him to have one and he understood them.

After being fully aware of this policy, I was quite surprised of the numerous amount of children under 13 years old who do have Facebook accounts.  Parents you may want to re-read Facebook’s policy about information that is on their site (click here ).  This may not be very popular, but here are a few of my thoughts on why your child under 13 years old should not have a Facebook account.

  1. Someone had to lie to set up the account.  The first moments of setting up the account you are asked your age.  Facebook will not proceed with setting up the account if you type in an age that is not 13 years or older.  What does that tell your children?  Answer: if you want something bad enough it is ok to lie.
  2. It is a stated policy.  Raising our children to buck authority is a big issue with me.  I know many can feel we are all inundated with rules and policies.   I think setting standards for our children to obey rules is  not only spiritual but a gift.
  3. Facebook an adult based site.  Facebook is full of adults who cannot filter their language or actions. Most parents would be offended if certain language or actions where taking place in front of your child in public.  Why not on the computer?  Protect them from it.

You might feel your child under 13  years old is mature enough to handle their own Facebook page, and you maybe right.  You might feel that because  you monitor your child’s Facebook that nothing bad will get past you, and you maybe right.  The people at Facebook feel that those under 13 years old are not ready for what their site offers, mainly because it wasn’t designed for Children, and I know that they are right.

Would love to know your thoughts.