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MySpace for the Sandlot Set

Zonk posted about 8 years ago | from the because-every-eight-year-old-needs-a-myspace-page dept.

49

conq writes "BusinessWeek has a piece on social networking sites for kids." From the article: "Parents are paying more heed to the kiddie sites because they know their children will learn, work, and live online. Computer skills such as social networking are becoming as much a part of the success-in-life portfolio as addition and subtraction, says Herbert S. Lin, senior scientist at the National Research Council. Parents' support of these sites stems in part from the idea that it's better for their kids to get their online introductions in a controlled environment -- as many of these sites promise -- than venture into the cyberjungle alone."

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Best way to teach about the net... (5, Insightful)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | about 8 years ago | (#16166087)

is to be there with them.
Show them whats out there, explain things, guide them and most of all - don't let them out on their own.
You wouldn't consider letting your youngster go playing on the streets on a saturday night, so do the same with online stuff.

Re:Best way to teach about the net... (3, Interesting)

HoosierPeschke (887362) | about 8 years ago | (#16166115)

I agree, it's the same as with TV and video games. I work and maintain a moderate lifestyle so my wife can stay home with my son. I'm not fond of those sites because they're mostly hideous and tend to be the new babysitter for kids.

I feel sorry for my son though, he'll probably be one of the few that actually knows what it's like to play outside, go camping, and not know what myspace is all about (thank you gentoo+iptables+squid).

Re:Best way to teach about the net... (2, Interesting)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | about 8 years ago | (#16166139)

Even though lots of people in the world use computers, a great deal don't.
My sons can both use computers (too well sometimes) but they don't have an internet connection in their bedroom. If they want to go online they can come on the family pc and do whatever they need to.

Computers can be a very powerful tool, but they should not run your life.

Re:Is it too much to ask.... (1)

Yesi'machick (1004671) | about 8 years ago | (#16166309)

That the internet be the one place we can relax *away* from snotty-nosed brats? Just sayin'.

Re:Best way to teach about the net... (1)

The Tyler (998004) | about 8 years ago | (#16166537)

I agree. MySpace alone is bad enough among teenagers as it is, but a MySpace for tweens? Seriously, social networking already is bad enough, but letting 8 year olds have their own version of MySpace? Eight year olds do not need social networking. What they need is to go outside, have fun, and spend time with their friends and family.

Computer skills such as social networking are becoming as much a part of the success-in-life portfolio as addition and subtraction
I do not see how social networking can be considered to be "as much a part of the success-in-life portfolio as addition and subtraction". Addition and subration, along other various math skills, are much more useful than learning how to make some MySpace or blog page. Math is needed everywhere. MySpace is not.

I feel sorry for my son though, he'll probably be one of the few that actually knows what it's like to play outside, go camping, and not know what myspace is all about (thank you gentoo+iptables+squid).
Good for your son. He will probably have lots more fun without that wasteland called MySpace. If I had kids, I would also most certainly block MySpace on the computer.

Going to school myself, I already see enough people with MySpace, and there is (obviously) many users. I cannot stand it when I am sitting in the cafeteria and hear a "did you add me to your MySpace friend list?" or "I read your comment on my MySpace". And to think that 8 year olds get their own version of this saddens me.

Re:Best way to teach about the net... (1)

ewl1217 (922107) | about 8 years ago | (#16166655)

Going to school myself, I already see enough people with MySpace, and there is (obviously) many users. I cannot stand it when I am sitting in the cafeteria and hear a "did you add me to your MySpace friend list?" or "I read your comment on my MySpace". And to think that 8 year olds get their own version of this saddens me.
I completely agree with you. Worse than that is when people ask something like, "Did you get my comment on MySpace?" It makes me wonder why they just can't talk to them in person...

Re:Best way to teach about the net... (1)

Takumi2501 (728347) | about 8 years ago | (#16170935)

I completely agree with you. Worse than that is when people ask something like, "Did you get my comment on MySpace?" It makes me wonder why they just can't talk to them in person...
Where's the novelty in that?

Re:Best way to teach about the net... (1)

Andrzej Sawicki (921100) | about 8 years ago | (#16167323)

Show them whats out there, explain things
I think you misspelled "ask them what's out there, maybe they can explain it to you". ;)

Re:Best way to teach about the net... (1)

ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) | about 8 years ago | (#16167481)

is to be there with them.
I'd love too but Bill needs me to work Saturday on those TPS reports. How am I going to be able to afford that new HD TV that I never have time to watch if I don't keep up with all my other coworkers who don't care about their kids? Jesus, if Bill finds out we have any....well, you can kiss promotion goodbye.

Re:Best way to teach about the net... (1)

segin (883667) | about 8 years ago | (#16172899)

Meh, Just give the kids a porn flick, and let them take care of themselves. It's not like they could possibly stab themselves if they're busy with a good ol' porn flick!

Re:Best way to teach about the net... (1)

Treates2 (1004837) | about 8 years ago | (#16170535)

umm.. excuse me?

creepy (-1, Troll)

celardore (844933) | about 8 years ago | (#16166093)

The opening sentence sounds creepy.

Parents are paying more heed to the kiddie sites because they know their children will learn, work, and live online.

It sounds like a predecessor to e-pimping your own children.

Re:creepy (1)

RobertLTux (260313) | about 8 years ago | (#16168525)

Im going to attach my post to this one to maybe do a karma tow on it. My big problems with a miniMySpace

1 if you depend on it being a walled garden how strong are the walls? for you d20 fans how is a Red Great Wyrm handled if it gets into the garden or a high end Chaotic Evil Wizard or even a kid being a thrall of something nasty

2 the E-Pimp problem there is a very fine line between modeling sites and Juvi Porn sites

3 getting a real live hosted domain is way too simple and would work a lot better (and Dadums can setup a "Greater Wall of Pure Writing" to handle the Spam problem)

Me i like the method of a hosted domain and a good set of gymnatics/dance lessons with a MA twist

great (3, Funny)

macadamia_harold (947445) | about 8 years ago | (#16166179)

MySpace for the Sandlot Set

Yeah, just what we need. A website where five-year-olds can post drunk pictures of themselves. But now that you mention it, Pete Townshend might be into that.

Re:great (2, Informative)

Bing Tsher E (943915) | about 8 years ago | (#16166743)

"Tough boys
Come over here
I wanna bite and kiss you ....

Rough boys
Don't walk away
I wanna buy you leather ....

Tough boys
Come over here
I wanna bite and kiss you"


(actual Pete Townshend lyrics from the 'Empty Bottle' album)

Re:great (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16169569)

But now that you mention it, Pete Townshend might be into that.

You misspelt "Gary Glitter", who actually does fancy children and actually was caught with a substantial amount of child porn. Townshend was sexually abused as a child and was researching for a book on the subject of child pornography, which he has also spoken out against.

Next time, at least make jokes that are funny, not libellous.

Social networking (1)

the grace of R'hllor (530051) | about 8 years ago | (#16166443)

Social networking, a "computer skill"? Social networking has translated pretty well to tha intarweb, but that doesn't mean it's a computer skill. I'd say that online social networking has both pros and cons compared to the traditional venues, so you can't even call it the ultimate.

Computer skill..? (3, Insightful)

mangobrain (877223) | about 8 years ago | (#16166481)

Since when was "social networking" a computer skill? Kids have been going to friend's houses, going to youth clubs, going to music/dance/martial arts etc. classes after school, going to each other's birthday parties, and just generally hanging out for a very, very long time. They've also been making pen friends. I once met someone on IRC from the other side of the world, and although that initial meeting was online, almost all of our correspondence from then until losing touch years later was by letter (the real, pen and paper kind).

To my mind, a "computer skill" is a skill related to the intrinsics of computers themselves, be it hardware or software, or the ability to do something you actually or effectively cannot do without computers. Simply knowing how to use computers is "computer literacy"; for me, at least, the distinction is the very reason we have two separate terms.

Re:Computer skill..? (1)

nametaken (610866) | about 8 years ago | (#16170179)

I think you're right, and it's an important distinction.

The last thing we need is people assuming they need to keep their kids up-to-date with "skills" like "social networking with myspace".

What they should be doing is keeping their children as far away from that horrifying mess as they can.

Maddogmobile (1)

Xargle (165143) | about 8 years ago | (#16167153)

Mad Dog Mobile [maddogmobile.com] is aimed at the same age range and uses full time moderation of both chat and content to keep things "safe", compared to other sites though capabilities are restricted to err on the side of safety.

What I'm teaching my four year old. (1)

twitter (104583) | about 8 years ago | (#16167361)

Restrictions suck and they don't work. As in real life, I'm giving my daughter a healthy sense of what's good for her and what she should avoid. It's a lot easier to teach her to look both ways to cross the street than it is to physically restrain her, so she's known to stay out of the street since she was two. Now we are teaching her to look before crossing. The computer and the TV are not any harder. We tell her she won't want to watch some shows because they will give her bad dreams and sometimes wish we followed the same advice. Here's a short list of computer guidelines:
  • She owns her computer and can do whatever she wants with it.
  • I'll help her do what she wants with her computer as long as she wants me to.
  • When she no longer needs my help, she will really own her computer.

I can't imagine that I'd make more restrictions as she gets older. She's going to have to make her own decisions about who she hangs out with and what she does with her time. All we can do is offer advice and provide opportunities to meet nice people. You don't make opportunities with restrictions, you do it by getting out and around.

Now, she uses her computer to play games on PBS, which are helping her math and language. She especially likes Cyberchase. Because we use mostly free software, we've never had any problems with pop up spam and all of that. Issues of bullying and other nonsense are not computer issues and have not happend yet. When they do, they will be treated like real world cases, mostly ignored.

Re:What I'm teaching my four year old. (1)

jb.hl.com (782137) | about 8 years ago | (#16168059)

Now, she uses her computer to play games on PBS, which are helping her math and language. She especially likes Cyberchase. Because we use mostly free software,

Hang on, to do that surely she would have to use the Flash plugin, which you have derided on many many occasions as "non-free junk" which you personally abstain from?

Re:What I'm teaching my four year old. (1)

cashman73 (855518) | about 8 years ago | (#16168957)

We tell her she won't want to watch some shows because they will give her bad dreams,. . .

Shows like Barney the Dinosaur have been known to give lots of people nightmares!

Re:What I'm teaching my four year old. (1)

bladesjester (774793) | about 8 years ago | (#16169561)

Barney the dinosuar once made me laugh so hard that it hurt.

Many years ago, my ex's little brother (who was about 5 at the time, if I remember correctly) ran screaming across the mall to where a guy in a Barney costume was standing and kicked the poor sod square in the shin.

Re:What I'm teaching my four year old. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16170151)

Are you teaching her that "M$ windoze" is evil, Bill Gates is the devil and Stallman is the messiah?

Re:What I'm teaching my four year old. (1)

iced_773 (857608) | about 8 years ago | (#16170407)

I'll help her do what she wants with her computer as long as she wants me to.

Friends don't help friends install MS junk.

What if she wants to install Windows? As she gets older, any computer classes she takes will quite likely be using that OS.

The M$ Future is Event Horizon. (0, Flamebait)

twitter (104583) | about 8 years ago | (#16171301)

What if she wants to install Windows? As she gets older, any computer classes she takes will quite likely be using that OS.

She will have to do and pay for that by herself, but I doubt M$ will exist much less be the basis for any computer courses in ten years. If Vista does not kill M$, the ten years it's going to take to make Event Horizon will.

What's Event Horizon? Event Horizon is the code name for the next version of Windows. Vista is the view beyond the Windows and the Horizon is the view beyond the Vista. The OS will be so massive by that time that anything, even light, getting anywhere near will be sucked into the black hole core. Some theorize that all the information sucked up by M$ will explode back into existence in at some future time, but most acknowledge the regurgitated information will be of little use to it's original owners. I think that Vista core already has collapsed and has it's own Event Horizon which is now obscured by marketing noise and other hot gasses. We will have to observe it to be sure, but the trend is unmistakable and M$'s next project will indeed be a black hole.

Re:The M$ Future is Event Horizon. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16171765)

twitter, please read this carefully. Following this advice will make Slashdot a better place for everyone, including yourself.

  • As a representative of the Linux community, participate in mailing list and newsgroup discussions in a professional manner. Refrain from name-calling and use of vulgar language. Consider yourself a member of a virtual corporation with Mr. Torvalds as your Chief Executive Officer. Your words will either enhance or degrade the image the reader has of the Linux community.
  • Avoid hyperbole and unsubstantiated claims at all costs. It's unprofessional and will result in unproductive discussions.
  • A thoughtful, well-reasoned response to a posting will not only provide insight for your readers, but will also increase their respect for your knowledge and abilities.
  • Always remember that if you insult or are disrespectful to someone, their negative experience may be shared with many others. If you do offend someone, please try to make amends.
  • Focus on what Linux has to offer. There is no need to bash the competition. Linux is a good, solid product that stands on its own.
  • Respect the use of other operating systems. While Linux is a wonderful platform, it does not meet everyone's needs.
  • Refer to another product by its proper name. There's nothing to be gained by attempting to ridicule a company or its products by using "creative spelling". If we expect respect for Linux, we must respect other products.
  • Give credit where credit is due. Linux is just the kernel. Without the efforts of people involved with the GNU project , MIT, Berkeley and others too numerous to mention, the Linux kernel would not be very useful to most people.
  • Don't insist that Linux is the only answer for a particular application. Just as the Linux community cherishes the freedom that Linux provides them, Linux only solutions would deprive others of their freedom.
  • There will be cases where Linux is not the answer. Be the first to recognize this and offer another solution.

From http://www.ibiblio.org/pub/linux/docs/HOWTO/Advoca cy [ibiblio.org]

Re:The M$ Future is Event Horizon. (1)

iced_773 (857608) | about 8 years ago | (#16171889)

Keep in mind, though, that we will always end up with better hardware. This alleged Windows bulk may or may not outrun Moore's Law - only time will tell. My own school (UVA), however, is starting to head up nanotech research. If quantum computing ends up working, it may or may not form a singularity of computing power in itself. But once again - only time will tell.

Re:The M$ Future is Event Horizon. (1)

jb.hl.com (782137) | about 8 years ago | (#16173617)

You start off with some batshit insane "one of the largest companies in the world will die because of Vista" shite, and move on to something so unfunny it makes me want to shoot myself.

Please, shut up.

Re:The M$ Future is Event Horizon. (1)

The Bungi (221687) | about 8 years ago | (#16182073)

Surely by now you've realised that your humor is about as effective as your "evangelism"? If you haven't, consider this the heads-up.

I call BS (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16170801)

There's no way 'twitter' here has a child, no way whatsoever. Just look at the way he posts. He's just using this "let me tell you about my daughter" to prop up his inane argument.

I call B$ (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16171925)

There - fixed your title.

Re:I call BS (1)

jb.hl.com (782137) | about 8 years ago | (#16173629)

He does [hillnotes.net] .

Re:I call BS (1)

The Bungi (221687) | about 8 years ago | (#16181903)

How do you know that's him?

Re:I call BS (1)

jb.hl.com (782137) | about 8 years ago | (#16187031)

Postings on the Baton Rouge LUG mailing list, it checks out (4 year old + wife) and at one point he says that Cox cable are bad for being against sharing (i.e. blocking port 80).

I'm convinced. If he'd like to come out and deny that's him then I'll stop spreading it around.

Re:I call BS (1)

The Bungi (221687) | about 8 years ago | (#16211341)

Interesting. I seem to recall the bitching about Cox as well way back when. I looked around in one of the mailing lists for the LUG and sure enough "Will Hill" or whatever fits twitter's "expression patterns" down to the "$", so to speak.

Re:What I'm teaching my four year old. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16171175)

# She owns her computer and can do whatever she wants with it.
# I'll help her do what she wants with her computer as long as she wants me to.
...

I can't imagine that I'd make more restrictions as she gets older. She's going to have to make her own decisions about who she hangs out with and what she does with her time.

*ahem* "Hello. I am a {pedophile, pervert}. Fortunately, you'll never get to know me. But in a few short years, your daughter will. she will meet me, maybe in a chat room, and I'll know all the tricks to win her Internet friendship. At first she'll think I'm her own age -- that's a great way to earn her trust. But eventually, my age won't matter to her.

If I meet her early enough, I'll start talking about things her mind is still too young to understand. So I'll help her understand. I'll send her pictures and tell her stories -- but I'll make sure she deletes the pictures because her paren't don't want her to have that kind of fun.

If I meet her a bit later, things will be a little easier and a little more difficult. More difficult because she'll be a little older and a little wiser. Easier because I won't have to educate her from scratch, and girls in early buberty typically have a rebellious streak. She'll all but about hate her parents for all the restrictions they place on her. Easier because my own age won't so much matter.

Either way, I'll begin as a playful e-friend, playing online games and chatting about generic things. But I know what I'm doing. And she'll tell me everything -- especially how her parents feel fewer restrictions are better. She may even be the one who first says the critical words in my hoby: 'I want to meet you.'

So, parent, are you going to be ready for a young kid's cries in agony? Or a disapearance? I didn't think so. If you don't want me to meet your daughter, or if you don't want her having 'cyber sex' on IRC with thirty year olds when she's barely old enough to know what sex is, you may want to be sure you guide her well."

I'm not saying I know what you're doing to the fullest extent. I don't. I just hope you're taking precautions I didn't think of, with letting your four-year-old surf the internet and whatever else online as she pleases.

Re:What I'm teaching my four year old. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16171531)

IMO cyber sex is a safe outlet for sexual feelings, and is much safer than real sex. I for one would have no problem with my child having cyber sex - and would applaud her being able to use IRC while being "barely old enough to know what sex is" (which would mean she's probably 6 or so).

Maybe he's teaching his child that meeting people irl from the internet can be dangerous, instead of restraining her from talking to people, which seems like a very logical thing to do to me. You can't sheld your child forever, so it's better to teach them things like that rather then try to hide it from them.

I used computers unrestricted since I learned to read at the age of 3, and managed to never get molested by a pedophile. My child (who will be born in 8 months or so) will do the same.

Meanwhile at the twitters... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16172941)

  • Daughter Of twitter: Daddy, can you read me a story?
  • twitter: Sure honey. Which one would you like?
  • The one where the little girl is walking through the woods and she finds a wolf and...
  • I'm sorry honey, you know we don't allow propietary fairy tales. Pick one that's licensed under the GFDL, OK?
  • But daddy, I looked in my books and there are no stories like that. And I looked for that 'copyleft' thing you said but I didn't find any!
  • Well honey, that's too bad. I guess you'll have to do something else.
  • But...
  • Honey, daddy is a little busy right now fighting FUD and M$ astroturfers on Slashdot. Remember the story I told you about Bill Gates and Windoze?
  • Yes...
  • OK then, you know this is important. Go play with your toys or something.
  • Well OK... I'll play with my spelling game...
  • WHAT? I thought I told your mom to get rid of that battery-powerd monstrosity! You know you can't have a toy that doesn't ship with source code, honey
  • But, but... it just repeats words dad...
  • No matter, it has software inside on that chip and it's propietary. What if it was made by M$? We can't have that. Throw it away, now. It's insulting to me.
  • OK... well I still want to play...
  • Here honey, here's a copy of the Cathedral and the Bazaar. Read it and memorize it. I'll quiz you tomorrow. Now go away. I'm writing a long post about how M$ Winblows crashes every five minutes...

Re:Meanwhile at the twitters... (1)

tvvitter (1000880) | about 8 years ago | (#16173643)

I'm twitter, and I approve this message.

How is this new? (1)

C0R1D4N (970153) | about 8 years ago | (#16167557)

When I was younger and first venturing into the "scary" cyberscape moderated chats existed.

I remember hopping onto AOL 3.0 (this was right after the Eddie Werner case in NJ, so the internet was espescially scary) and there was a ton of moderated chat rooms for kids. Then again back then there wren't a lot of MMOs or various other things to actually do online. Unless you were the entrepeneuring [wikipedia.org] sort.

Am I the only one (1)

Kingrames (858416) | about 8 years ago | (#16168543)

Am I the only person who read the headline and expected some quotes from the movie "The Sandlot"?

A skill?! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16169087)

"Social Networking" is a computer skill?! What next? Clicking on hrefs now considered a computer skill? Deleting files a "computer skill"?

Gimme a break.

Most kids who want MySpace already use it. (2, Insightful)

gblues (90260) | about 8 years ago | (#16169255)

They just lie about their age when they sign up. I know half a dozen local kids who have done this. Since MySpace doesn't do any verification, the admins essentially have to catch 'em in the act--not hard since most of the kids who do this are up-front about it, but first you have to find the profiles in a sea of legitimate ones.

Nathan

Computer skills such as social networking?? (1)

dave562 (969951) | about 8 years ago | (#16169509)

Quoted from the article, Computer skills such as social networking...

My pr0n collection pwnz j00!! ????

Get them hooked while young (1)

dangitman (862676) | about 8 years ago | (#16169911)

Parents' support of these sites stems in part from the idea that it's better for their kids to get their online introductions in a controlled environment -- as many of these sites promise -- than venture into the cyberjungle alone."

Sounds more to me like "the first hit of crack is free!"

I mean, what's wrong with the actual playground? Or actually exploring the physical world on your BMX bike, going down to the ol' swimmin' hole? I guess with the fear-mongering society we live in, parents would rather their kids be "safe" in a mind-numbing virtual world than face the "dangers" of a more stimulating outside world. This is just the perfect way to get kids to the point where their seratonin supply is regulated by the light of an LCD screen, rather than sunlight. Where their social success is measured in slashdot Karma, rather than ... oh wait ...

What hath we wrought? (1)

Hershmire (41460) | about 8 years ago | (#16170347)

Social networking website "skills" an important factor in a child's future success? Walden Pond is looking better every day.
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