Lisa Eldred is a staff writer and editor at Covenant Eyes. She lives in the Lansing, Michigan area, where she is actively involved at Riverview Church. She blogs about faith, design, and rhetoric at WasabiJane.com.
Dark deeds thrive in secrecy. The National Security Agency knows it, but do parents? The Online Disinhibition Effect is the concept that secrecy removes your inhibitions, making a person more likely to engage anonymously in questionable activities online. It’s the belief that it’s okay to say or do harmful things online if nobody knows it’s you. It’s a big factor in all sorts of questionable behaviors online. Such activities include illegal file sharing, cyberbullying, viewing pornography, and the NSA’s main concern: conspiracy and terrorist activities. And it explains why the NSA has been spying on people online: they are more … Continue reading →
Not too long ago, I spoke with a friend of mine who recently started using Covenant Eyes to protect his teenage sons, one of whom had been struggling with pornography. “It’s going well,” he said. “I’ve got it set up so that we’re receiving each other’s reports. I’ll tell you, though, what’s really been helping my son is the Filter.” It makes sense, of course. When you’re in the midst of struggling with the temptation, cutting off access is incredibly helpful. That’s why we have Internet Filtering. It’s also why we have a panic button. Still, statements like that often make … Continue reading →
Over the last few years, there has been a growing trend of parents who punish their kids online after they have misbehaved online. Sometimes these punishments have been fairly lighthearted, like the parents who grounded their child from Facebook and posted silly pictures of themselves on her account. Others were more costly, like the mom who posted a photo of her daughter holding a sign confessing to being a cyberbully, then donating money to an anti-bullying charity, or the dad who took a shotgun to his daughter’s laptop. Reactions to these punishments have been mixed. Some have lauded giving the kids a “taste … Continue reading →
As a teenager in the ’90s, one of the coolest gifts I ever received was a Game Boy Pocket. I spent countless hours staring at the 2″ black and white screen, staring intently at Tetris and Donkey Kong Land 2. And I brought it everywhere I could: vacations, grandparents’ houses, piano competitions. Technology was much simpler in that golden era of dial-up Internet. Hand-held devices were generally one-use. For gaming, you had the Game Boy series. For communications, the Palm series was the pinnacle, with its ability to make phone calls and send e-mail. As much as we as adults can smirk … Continue reading →
Have your kids started to make their Christmas lists yet? As Black Friday approaches here in the US (as well as Cyber Monday for online retailers), it may be tempting to snap up that iPod touch® your kid has been begging for. After all, they’re great gateway gifts for kids, tweens, and teens. They offer the technology of an iPhone without the big data plan. So kids can play games and take photos with a much less expensive device. And that means they can’t use it to go online, right? Wrong. Many parents fail to realize that iPod touches (and, for … Continue reading →