Monday, December 7, 2009

Appropriate or not?

I saw this Ask Amy question in the paper today and thought that I would pass it along.  You can follow the link or view the question and answer below.

Ask Amy
Monday, December 7, 2009; 12:00 AM
DEAR AMY: My 10-year-old son attended a classmate's birthday party held in a public venue. Afterward, food was served at the birthday boy's home.

Video was taken of the children in both places, and the video was posted on YouTube.

We don't know the family all that well, and we were surprised to see very clear images of our child on YouTube.

I called the mom and politely expressed my unhappiness with this disclosure.

Am I mistaken to believe that they took this a bit far without the parents' permission? -- Somewhere in Suburbia

DEAR SOMEWHERE: While your shock would be completely justified if this home video were broadcast on your local television news without your permission, YouTube is a video-sharing site, and many people see the site as a benign way to enjoy and share footage without going to the trouble and expense of reproducing and distributing it.

Video of your son will end up on YouTube when he appears in his school's holiday concert, basketball tournament or Boy Scouts awards ceremony. He and his friends will make films and post them on YouTube for school projects or for fun.

While I understand your rational parental concern about use of your son's image without his (or your) consent, you should use this opportunity to educate your child about the risks of video sharing.

I think all concerned parents regret the loss of privacy our children will experience as they grow up in our virtual world. But it is your son's world to inherit, and you should work with him to make sure he is cautious -- and aware of the consequences.

Tell him that when there is a camera around, he should assume that you are watching -- along with the rest of us.

I have struggled with this same issue... specifically when it comes to Lulu's play productions. While I am thinking that these moms would just shoot me if their kid's pic was on my blog page... it seems that there isn't any problem posting similar pictures from the play in the local papers. What's the difference? And, yes, I am sure that clips from this year's chorus production are going to be on YouTube.



Mrs. Bird said...

AGH! I broke my rule and posted my student's class photo the other day....what do you think of that? Horrible awful teacher...I should take it down? I made my classroom blog private and explicitely asked my student's parents not to re-post photos on the web unless it was of JUST their child...And then I rationalized my posting it as I didn't use any names....

Sometimes I freak out a little that there might be some sick pedophile out there getting his jollies off on my kid.....

Nap Mom said...

I understand. I really try not to post other kids. I have always have a phobia that someone is going to "get" me or my kids. (Another post about THAT at a later date.) I can hardly believe that I blog... worldwide... for ALL to see.

I remember the post of your kids now... was it the one where you said that you were thankful for your job? I didn't think anything of it.

Manic Mommy said...

NOT appropriate. There ARE pedophiles out there searching the Internet to find out more about our children. Did you know there are Internet groups just for that purpose? Just as I watch a baby bargain blog to find out scoop on the best deals, pedophiles share ideas on where to find the information they're seeking. I completely disagree with Ask Amy. We'll teach our children to be safe in the age of the Internet by being the example of what is appropriate. I would definitely ask for the pictures to be removed immediately. I would also be very unhappy if my personal information was printed in the newspaper without my consent.