Culture & Entertainment

What you need to tell your teens about social media, today

By: Jennifer Gruden
Canadian Living
Culture & Entertainment

What you need to tell your teens about social media, today

By: Jennifer Gruden
You have got to show this article about social media's impact on admissions and job prospects to your teens. It appears in the  business section, not the parenting one, of the New York Times this week: They loved your G.P.A. Then they saw your Tweets. Takeaway quote: "Of 381 college admissions officers who answered a Kaplan telephone questionnaire this year, 31 percent said they had visited an applicant’s Facebook or other personal social media page to learn more about them — a five-percentage-point increase from last year. More crucially for those trying to get into college, 30 percent of the admissions officers said they had discovered information online that had negatively affected an applicant’s prospects." Social media and your kids: University of Toronto admissions office (University of Toronto's admissions office) I have some teens in my family tree who are getting a copy of this article -- sometimes the best way to show that it's not just their crazy aunt who cares about their rather scary Twitter posts. There is a discussion to be had, I suppose, about whether Canadian universities and colleges are checking out kids' social media profiles for information about them, and whether that's a good thing. But I think the reality is going to be that people will use the information available when they have to make tough decisions, and social media can provide a lot of information. At Canadian Living, we've got a great piece about navigating social media as a family right here. This is one of those parenting issues that evolves a lot. I'm always interested in there balance: Do you keep your kids off social media, or try to? Do you monitor constantly? Do you eventually get more hands-off? When I was a kid, my parents did not monitor all my conversations with my friends, and I am really glad for that. But those conversations were not recorded in a public space, either. I would love to know how you're navigating these issues, or your thoughts. Have you set up Facebook or other profiles for your kids, and at what ages? Do you have access to all of your child's accounts? And if so, do you check in often? If not, do you still keep an eye on what they are publishing? If you have kids in your extended family and you see something that worries you, do you bring it up? (Photography by SimonP (Own work) via Wikimedia Commons)
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What you need to tell your teens about social media, today

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