One mommy blogger is going viral with a sobering warning about the dangers kids face on even the most seemingly innocent corners of the internet. Brenna, the writer behind Suburban Snapshots, shared a screenshot on Facebook of a message her nine-year-old daughter received on the app musical.ly. The app, which her daughter and her friends used to create short music videos with audio and video effects, also includes social networking functions. Apparently, those functions are being used by internet creeps for nefarious purposes.
I'm eating some parenting-flavored crow today and reversing my stance on musical.ly. I enjoyed the creative, funny videos Anna would make with her friends. I had rules (no identifying info, private account, and parental access at will). It wasn't the hand gestures or obnoxious song loops or even the swears Anna would always report to me that ended her video career, it was finding that she switched her account to public, had deleted comments, and then this, which I found in her "people you don't know" mailbox. I trust your judgement with your own kids, but remind you to be diligent in monitoring their activity.
Here are the messages she received:
Brenna's readers came forward with messages of support and their own stories.
It's a chilling reminder that parents can't be too careful when their kids are online. There's no app in existence that creeps won't try to use for their own disgusting ends.