Social media has surely made the world flatter, connecting loved ones across different time zones. Unfortunately, it has penetrated our daily lives so much that it has also presented a host of complications to relationships, including between family members. Miscommunication and misunderstandings can arise from a simple post or tweet. As parents, it can be a handy tool to stay updated on your children’s disposition and whereabouts. However, improper usage of platforms can elicit groans of disapproval or, worse, embarrassment. While kids are also guilty of misusing and abusing social media platforms, parents can serve as role models when it comes to practising restraint and following social media etiquette. Here are some social media dos and don’ts to remember.
Do post photos and videos about family occasions
The point of social media is to keep your social circle updated on life events and milestones. So it is perfectly fine and encouraged to update social media friends and followers by posting photos and videos about birthdays, reunions and even family vacations. For safety reasons, however, it is best to post vacation updates once you are already home. Posting real-time updates about your whereabouts can catch the eye of shady individuals who could take advantage of your absence or routines.
Don’t post photos and videos about private moments
Oversharing is a no-no. Some first-time moms, overcome by excitement, can tend to go overboard in sharing updates about their new-born. Things like toilet training or casual, unguarded moments at home are not meant for public consumption unless the point is purely instructional. Otherwise, it could cause serious rift and conflict between you and your child when they’re old enough to know better.
Do post instructive comments on your children’s page
Most kids are on social media these days so it’s natural for you to have online banters. As a rule, keep comments and interactions on the constructive and instructive area. Encourage positive posts by reacting adequately and discourage negative, destructive or improper posts by sending a private message in order to avoid publicly shaming your child. Instead of openly correcting them, it’s better to talk to him privately first. Shaming via social media can be a form of bullying as it tends to open a can of worms and attracts online trolls to exacerbate a situation.
Don’t rant on social media
There’s just far too much unnecessary content online, so don’t add to the clutter. Instead of posting mundane updates about buying cheap flowers from your favourite online florist, a helpful review of your experiences with certain establishments can be a more substantial use of your social media time. The worst thing that you can do is to rant online. Those kinds of posts can be cathartic, but it also attracts unnecessary attention from malicious personalities. Family problems are intended to remain in the privacy of your home.
Your social media friends are sometimes made up of professional connections, acquaintances, even strangers. As such, a rule of thumb before interacting in those spheres is to ask yourself: Is this something I can share or disclose to strangers? If not, then don’t post it. Otherwise, you can always tweak your privacy settings to keep your profile more personal.