A social networking site is an online community where people from all over the world can meet and share common interests. There are several hundred social networking websites. Most of them are free to join and allow users to set up their own personalized profile or blog. Often, users will list their location, age, gender, and interests. Many social networking sites also allow users to post pictures, make comments on other people’s profiles or blogs, and search for other users.
Some well-known social networking websites include Facebook, Hi5®, MySpace®, and Xanga®.
Social networking sites have become increasingly popular among teens. Children use these sites to create their online identity and communicate with their friends and other teens. Like most new technological developments, this brings both positive and negative implications.
The majority of the activity on these sites is legal and can be positive. Children can connect with friends and meet other teens with the same interests. However, your children and teens are not aware that they are putting themselves in danger by giving out too much personal information and communicating with people they first met online. Social networking sites incorporate instant messaging, chatrooms, profiles, pictures, E-mail, and blogging all in one site. Any person who accesses these sites can easily contact your child and teen through the site.