Limitations for Kids by Doctors

Kids-Absorb-Twice-as-Much-Cellphone-Radiation-537x385(Photo © Flickr user apdk)

Below is a link to a story from our local TV station, KRON-4, about how parents should limit the amount of time kids spend online.  Doctors from the American Academy of Pediatrics say that parents need to know that unrestricted media use can have serious consequences.

I remember our parents limiting the number of hours we could watch TV back in the 80s. These days though, it needs to be the hours of screen time for kids which includes TV, computer , video games, phones and any other online device.

Read the full story here:

http://news.kron4.com/news/doctors-say-parents-should-limit-kids-texting-and-use-of-mobile-devices/

How to Safeguard Your Child’s iPod Touch

steps-to-setup-a-kids-ipod-touch(photo credit:  AppCertain)

I read this great article on one of my favorite blogs, Cool Mom Tech. It’s step-by-step instructions on how to keep your child’s iPod Touch safe. It’s something all parents should do for young children and teens. My son has been using his iPod Touch for years and I had no idea it had this capability until I read their article. Even though my son is almost 14, I went in and changed his settings so that he couldn’t download any apps or content that are for 17+.  I still have to check his iPod Touch often but knowing he can’t get to certain apps makes me feel a little bit better. I have some friends that go in and disable Facebook, YouTube, the internet and several other apps if their child gets bad grades or gets in trouble.

The information below is taken from CoolMomTech website article “How to make an iPod Touch safe for kids” located here. I checked these steps on iOS 7 and it works exactly the same.

Restrictions and Privacy

First of all, it’s up to you to keep in mind the age of your child and their maturity and sense of responsibility, in terms of what you allow and what you keep on lockdown. Hopefully this info will help you make the decisions that are best for you.

The iPod Touch comes complete with Safari and YouTube, as well as access to iTunes, the App Store, Facetime, and a camera. Now these are all awesome for us adults, but not so great for unfettered access by kids. Thankfully, you can set restrictions on pretty much everything on the device by doing the following:

iPod Touch Restricted Settings
1. Go to Settings
2. Click on General
3. Click on Restrictions
4. Enable restrictions (you will be asked for a passcode and will need to enter this to change any restrictions)
5. Turn “off” what you don’t want your kids to have access to, which may include Safari, Camera, Facetime, iTunes, Installing/Deleting Apps.
iPod Touch Allowed Content Settings

If you are keeping the iTunes and Installing Apps tabs “on,” you’ll want to scroll down to “Allowed Content” and set iTunes and App Store limits.

I moved Music & Podcasts to “clean” and set Movies and TV-Shows to “G” and “TV-G” for my 8-year old. I also set Apps Rated to 4+, though you can turn that off completely if you don’t want your child to be able to search for apps. Imagine my surprise when my daughter searched for “girls apps” and ended up with…yeah. Not stuff for little girls.

Additionally, I turned off “in-app purchases” and required a password to be entered for any app purchase attempt. But of course, you should consider your children’s age, as well as how they’ll be using the device, to help in your decision as to what to turn off and how to limit the content they can view.

iPod Touch Privacy Settings
Restrictions 2.0
Within the same Restrictions page, take a few seconds to scroll through each one of the options, including Location Services (which I turned OFF), as well as contacts, reminders, and photos, then decide whether you want your child to be able to make changes to any of those categories. For example, I prefer to add contacts myself to my daughter’s iPod Touch, so I set that to “don’t allow changes.” As you scroll down, you’ll see you can also turn “multiplayer games” and “adding friends” to off which might be wise for younger kids who aren’t quite social networking yet.

Read more: http://www.coolmomtech.com/2013/01/how_to_make_ipod_touch_safe_for_kids.php#ixzz2gsypGoms

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California Passes “Eraser” Law for Minors on Social Media Sites

2013-09-25 20.03.57

On September 23rd, legislation was signed by Gov. Jerry Brown that will require social media and web sites to remove online activity from a minor starting in 2015. Party pictures, scandalous photos or just simply embarrassing photos can be requested to be taken down by children under the age of 18. A bigger part of the SB 568 Bill is to limit the online marketing to minors. It prohibits advertisers to market any under-age material to minors.
 
Common Sense Media website shared a letter written to Gov Jerry Brown asking him to sign the Bill in to law. The two major parts of the Bill are…
  • First, it would prohibit websites, online services, and online or mobile apps that are directed to minors from marketing specified dangerous or age-inappropriate products and services to minors. It’s a no-brainer that websites and apps that target kids or that know a user is a minor shouldn’t serve these inappropriate ads.
  • Second, SB 568 would permit minors to remove content or information that they personally posted on websites, online services, and online or mobile apps, in effect requiring an “eraser button” that kids sorely need. Too often, young people post information they later regret but can’t delete from the online and mobile world. All of us — especially kids — should be able to delete what we post.
Minors these days will have something that most of us never had to worry about – a “digital footprint”. What could that possibly be, you ask? It’s a person’s online presence. A history of what they’ve posted online: videos, photos, posts, comments anything that is shared online – good or bad. For those of us born before the 80s, we don’t have much to worry about. I still can’t imagine what high school would have been like with cell phones, let alone social media. It’s probably why I’m so passionate about learning and educating others on how to navigate through this digital world as parents. It’s up to us to watch over our kids and teach them to be responsible for what they share online. Be active and be aware of what your child is doing and sharing online.