Brownell Middle School

260 Chalfonte, Grosse Pointe Farms, MI 48236

Online Social Networking

Sites Often Used

Parents:

Blog Sites, Profile Sites, Diary Sites or Social-Networking Sites; people use many different names for them. They are a combination of a diary, a personal ad and a cyber-dating Web site.

As more and more students turn to these websites to chronicle their lives and socialize with friends, they also need to learn that their words and pictures are reaching way beyond the peers for whom they were intended. And some are paying a price. In the past few months, college, high school and even middle school students across the USA have been suspended or expelled, thrown off athletic teams, passed over for jobs and even arrested based on their online postings.

With recent news coverage of the sites and their explosive growth, authorities have taken notice, concerned not only about inappropriate behavior but that kids are making themselves vulnerable to predators. Police recently have investigated several cases involving teens who were assaulted by men they met on these sites.

MySpace and Facebook give users control over who can see their pages — but it's up to the users to take that control. MySpace, is open to anyone; while it appeals largely to teens. MySpace says users must be at least 14; users can customize the privacy of their sites, blocking anyone but friends, for example. However, their method of determining age is far from foolproof...6th graders have been able to register on the site.

If you would like to be able to see if your child has an account on the popular web site, let us walk you through the steps.

To get started, click here to go to the site's homepage.

You can search for any account by going to the search engineon the site. You can search for a name or an entire school. If you want a more revealing look at what are on the individual pages you will need to set up an account on thesite.Its free!

To sign upyou will need to provide an email account, your name, address and birth date in order to have an active account.

For More Information, Try these links:

http://www.wiredsafety.org/internet101/blogs.html
http://www.clickondetroit.com/family/5302966/detail.html

The "My Space" Phenomenon
Why parents must mind MySpace (Dateline NBC)


"My Space" Safety Tips for Teens (Blocked at school)
"My Space" Safety Tips for Parents (Blocked at school)

Friendster
Facebook
MySpace
Xanga

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