It can almost be ridiculous what we see and believe on social media. People have even taken to making a parody about how much we lie on social media. Take a look at the clip “Behind the scenes of social media” on YouTube for a bit of a laugh.
But on the serious side, it’s nothing new to compare ourselves to others, to want what others have and to comment on someone without thinking about the lasting effect, but social media has raised these to an almost uncontrollable degree.
We see all the happy snaps on Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat. People’s lives seem to filled with endless happy moments, holidays, nights eating out and good times. It’s not unreasonable to compare your life to these images and start to feel a little inadequate.
It’s important as parents that we educate our kids on what’s cyber fiction and what’s actually reality. We need to teach our kids how to be objective and to ask questions. Teaching our kids media literacy is an important part of modern day parenting.
According to the Raising Children Network Media Literacy at the most basic level involves teaching your kids to understand:
1. content – the obvious content and the hidden content like gambling built into apps and video games
2. advertising and other forms of marketing bias
3. effects of media ownership on the way information is presented
4. online safety- That all people online should be treated with caution
5. censorship- what’s age appropriate to viewing
A recent study found that when parents spoke with their children about cyber safety, over 60% of them changed the way they behaved online as a result.
For some interesting statistics on parents views and information needs visit IParent.
Iparent, 2017, Reviewed on 18/06/2017, https://www.esafety.gov.au/education-resources/iparent/kids-online-infographic
Media literacy: making sense of media messages, 2017, Raising Children Network, Reviewed on 18/06/2017, http://raisingchildren.net.au/articles/media_literacy.html
Should My Child Be on Social Media? Parent, 2017, Reviewed on 18/06/2017 https://www.esafety.gov.au/education-resources/iparent/staying-safe/social-networking/should-my-child-be-on-social-media