You, as a parent, may often hear people state that Instagram is only for the adults and is certainly not safe for the kids. Well, true as it may be, it all depends on how one uses it and how much control you have on your kids when they use this popular photo and video sharing platform that has more than a billion active monthly users, most of whom are teenagers and kids.
Yes, users within the age group of 13 plus or less, can also use Instagram, apart from the adults. It is such a robust platform that most people consider it to be one of the most powerful search engines for billions and billions of images posted daily!
This platform is exceptionally attractive and alluring for kids because they get to see anything of their liking on Instagram, such as pictures of:
- Fashion items
- Funny images and of course
As long as their focus is limited to the above six and does not cross over to the seventh, it is a good platform. When it does, it may be harmful to the kids.
But what has Instagram, in particular, has got to do with it. It all depends on parental control.
Take it seriously
If you are serious about the safety of your kids on Instagram, there are three specific ways in which you can do that. You will need to be:
- Deliberate and
There may indeed be a lot of challenges that you may have to face while protecting your children from the impacts, abuses, and mental health effects of social media. However, restricting your kids from using it entirely can be equally, if not more, harmful.
Finding the right balance between using and overusing may be difficult, but not impossible. All you have to do is:
Block those harassing and unknown followers who send anonymous messages to your child directly. Though Instagram does not have any feature to do so before it happens, you can take proper actions after the fact, but make sure you take action immediately.
You can block anyone. The good thing is that the blocked users will never know about the fact.
Other tips to stay safe on Instagram
Experts such as Blastup and even Instagram helpdesk comes up with several other tips to ensure safety while using this platform and make it an enjoyable place to hang around for everyone.
You should research thoroughly and take note of such tips that you will also come across different sites. These tips that will teach best practices include:
- Knowing the Community guidelines from the app itself and either unfollow, block or report about the users who violate these by sharing videos or photos that makes you or your kids uncomfortable
- Making sure that you know the account of your kids is private or public because in a private account all those who want to post or see the posts will need to send a request first to the followers or the following list
- Teaching your kid to reach out to a trusted family member for help if a specific user is found to be bullying or even ask their teacher for help to remove the comment from a photo that is shared and at the same time report about this bullying and harassment incident to the Help Center and
- Making sure that all the pictures and photos shared by your kid are itself comfortable and represent these to a wider audience in the best way possible.
In short, your kid should not do or receive anything that is uncomfortable to you, the teachers, and even your employers.
Reasons to care
The primary reason to take care of your kids is to prevent them from two specific things, such as:
- Impact on their mental health as well as
- The ad fatigues.
Ideally, the Instagram Story ads are the ones that you should take proper care of. Used extensively by the marketers, these Ad Stories and ad formats ensure success to their business marketing campaign, which your kid may not have anything to do with.
In addition to that, too much of these may create potential ad fatigue if they experience back-to-back Story ads regularly. Today the social ad landscape is changing, taking it to almost to a different era where the marketers want desperately to be in the prime position taking the full advantage of this feature.
Therefore, you must make sure that whatever they see is mature and creative so that it connects well and comfortably with them.
Show what you do
You must show your kids what you may do in such situations but in a much more creative way. Since most of the users on Instagram post their pictures and videos in order to gain more followers, there should not be any aggressiveness in it.
This is especially necessary in the case of the marketers to ensure because they are always on the lookout to patronize their followers. Moreover, their impact is even more in terms of engagement and interaction with the use of innovations and features.
What you should do is teach them how exactly they should stick and engage with those posts only that are their favorites. It can be:
- A favorite flavor of an ice cream
- Their favorite season or
- Their favorite childhood memory.
This will help them to strike the right chord with the posts and at the same time, remain comfortable while viewing, sharing, liking, or commenting on it.
Rules to join Instagram
In a nutshell, you will need to follow and make your kids follow a few simple rules top join Instagram. These are:
- Make the account private
- Ensure that the passwords are shared
- Make sure that only friends can follow
- Ensure that all private information essentially stays private and
- No abusive or seductive photos get posted.
Realize their needs and teach them how modesty matters on Instagram to start a conversation. Setting your kid loose and hoping for the best is unwise.
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