May 24 2007

4 Steps To Becoming A Bad Web Parent

For parents who are worried their hands-off approach to supervising their child’s online activities lacks the energy they once had, I thought offering this 4-step plan would be just the jumpstart they’d need. So let’s get right to it!

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Step 1 – Give your child free reign on the Internet

Yep, the sky’s the limit! There are a gazillion web pages out there ready to teach your kids for you. They won’t come out and say they’re running a surrogate parenting business, but they’re out there and are eager to help. So act now, by…well, not acting.

Worried how you’re going to handle the “birds and bees” talk? Well, worry no more! There’s porn-a-plenty out there that can help. And it’s sooo easy to find, too. Let your kid exchange ideas and photos with “12-year-old Pat” (who is really a 50-year-old man — shhhh!) and soon they could even teach you a thing or two. Just think of the time you’ll save!

Step 2 – Keep your superpower a secret

Everyone has some sort of special talent. Some can turn away a second helping of pie, while others can program a VCR. But how many are out there that can render a computer to a smoking pile of ashes just by standing next to it?

Don is one such man. He struggles with his superpower everyday knowing that if he ever got into his kid’s computer — POOF! — instant meltdown. But he won’t be telling anyone his secret lest he be captured and studied for science.

Step 3 – Let your kid have their own unsupervised blog

I don’t have to tell you that blogs are showing no sign of slowing down and kids love’em! Because they’re such expressive creatures it gives them a way to tell all their visitors how old they are, what their cell number is, their likes and dislikes, maybe even where they’ll be next weekend so they can meet the “nice” people they’ve met online.

And for the child who is not very articulate, a digital camera or web cam will enable them to do just as well as a budding writer. I mean, honestly: words cannot compare to a provocative pose, am I right? Judges are standing by to help them along with their creativity.

Step 4 – Never cross over into their privacy

Much to their dismay, scientists have yet to discover the exact moment when a kid’s privacy becomes impenetrable. With eyewitness reports saying it’s a gradual process, and others reporting it happens overnight, one wonders why science hasn’t stopped such fruitless research altogether.

Traditional thinking once held that preserving a kid’s safety was more important than their privacy. But the “don’t ask, don’t have to worry” method of parenting seems to be gaining favor among parents who just don’t have the time.

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Okay, switching back to reality now. If a parent loves their kid enough to protect them from strangers on the street, then they must love them enough to protect them from the strangers they’d meet online.

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6 Comments on this post

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  1. TheAnand said:

    Nice Sarcasm, love it for the style of writing! Parts about the webcam and about not stepping into their privacy is nicely worded!

    May 25th, 2007 at 9:55 am
  2. Mark said:

    Thanks TheAnand. Sarcasms a touchy thing. If not used well, it could really set some people off. Glad you enjoyed it. I wanted to take a difference approach to parental advice and thought this might be one way to do it.

    May 25th, 2007 at 7:09 pm
  3. Owen said:

    Great post. Must keep that in mind for when my kid is a bit older

    May 26th, 2007 at 3:05 pm
  4. Mark said:

    Hehe…thanks for commenting. Glad you liked it. :)

    May 26th, 2007 at 7:30 pm
  5. Annie said:

    Well written piece, great commentary on a important topic. I love your use of sarcasm, instead of being just another warning about the dangers of kids and internet, this makes for entertaining reading.

    May 27th, 2007 at 10:32 am
  6. Mark said:

    Thank you for your kind words, Annie. I appreciate that. I’m very passionate about parents getting involved with their children’s activities online, and I try to be different than just listing off a checklist in the same tone you may see elsewhere. :)

    I invite you to subscribe to my feed for future postings on FWW.

    May 27th, 2007 at 11:12 am

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