A few months ago I created a parenting resource called the Online Safety Group. As the father of 4 daughters, and as an ad tech veteran, I was particularly concerned with their online privacy, how they would be tracked, and how easy it is to be lured into the darker side of the web.
Additionally, I had watched this TED Talk by Cindy Gallop, entitled "Make Love, Not Porn", and became educated about the psychological impact things like prolific access to porn (made significantly easier because of the internet) can have on our youth. In short, the message is, when our kids are first having sex, they will have been exposed to a lot more pornography than we might suspect, and their expectations of what real sex actually is like, will be alarmingly warped.
Since then, OSG has grown quite nicely. It's not a major destination for parents yet, but those that do visit tend to share what they read and come back for more. I also commissioned a book to be written by Dr. Lilla Dale McManis, an impressive woman with many years experience as a professional child psychologist, and a number of additional guides by various experts.
I have recently made all of these free, and so there is no excuse for any parent out there to not take a few moments to get educated about keeping their kids safe online. You can download the book and the free guides directly from this URL.
How You Can Help
- Easiest of all, pick an article and share it on facebook and the like. The more parents that understand, the more kids will benefit.
- Consider it as part of a teaching aid, or distribute through school groups.
- Write a guest post - we have authors that write about their personal experiences, as well as technical experts that give great ideas.
- There is a sister site that I haven't had time for - AreTheyOldEnough.com - which helps parents understand what movies and TV shows their kids should watch, or what Apps or games they should play. If you are technical, I have an idea about how this should be rebuilt so that new games and shows are always present, and it becomes a more valuable resource.