Students Worry About Parental Snooping, Devise Ways to Protect Privacy
The Facebook group entitled “For the love of god — don’t let parents join Facebook” has 5,819 high school and college-aged members who want to stop the growing number of parents who are joining Facebook, the massively popular social networking site, from “spying” on them.
Facebook was previously available only to college students — users were required to provide a college e-mail address in order to sign up — but in September 2007, it opened its doors to all, though it recommends users be at least 13 years old.
…With the change to general admission for anyone who wants to use Facebook, parents can “friend” their children on the site, which allows them to view their personal information, photos and “wall” interactions with friends. For many students, this newfound ability is viewed as an invasion of privacy.
Many students are particularly unsettled by their parents’ use of the social networking site because they don’t know why their parents would want to use it, other than to spy on or embarrass them.
However, parents object to their children’s protests that Facebook is only for students.
“Facebook is open to everyone,” said Nancy Wright, the parent of two college-aged Facebook users, “and parents are people too. We have a right to use Facebook to socialize and maybe even befriend our kids!”
It’s not only kids that are embarrassed by their parents seeing their online persona. I had to keep 2 separate Yahoo! (and others’ sites), so my kids didn’t see the more grown up stuff on my profile. One was the PG version that anyone could access and the other was set to private and over-18 only.