Teen Cybertalk Workshop: What Every Teen Should Know About Social Media
Welcome to the ‘CyberTalk’ Workshop. This workshop was presented at the Bloom Conference 2012. Hundreds of teenage girls ages 12-18 gather together every year in Southfield, Michigan to get empowered and feel more confident in their abilities to ‘Live Life With No Regrets.’
This workshop is intended for parents, students, educators and anyone that works with youth. Peer pressure is rampant and makes life challenging for this generation of teenagers: Bullying, Cyberbullying, and Sexual exploitation are lurking online. The objective of the workshop is to: have fun, learn something new and learn to use Social Media more effectively.
Three Big Players in the Social Media World
- Facebook – 900 million users.
- Twitter – 140 million users.
- Instagram – 30 million users.
Key Points To Remember About Social Media
- God sees every word you write, type, say and think.
- Check with your parent/guardian before signing up.
- Watch your emotions.
- Social Media can be time-consuming.
- What you write online is exposed to the public.
- Protect yourself from predators.
- K.I.T. – Keep It Tasteful. If your mother or grandmother cannot see your page, you probably should not say or do it!
Students were given an opportunity to take a quiz on the history of Social Media. General questions were asked about Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: How many users? Who is the founder? and What year the Social Media site got its start? were the main questions.
A few students answered all the questions correctly, and others were surprised at the answers. I think they learned something during the quiz -- even though some of it was trivia.
Dos and Don’ts of Social Media
- Share congratulations.
- Tell adult if you see something strange.
- Be polite and courteous.
- Send Happy Birthday wishes.
- Send nude or nearly nude photos.
- Tell your friend’s secrets.
- Share phone numbers with strangers.
Social Media Concerns
LLP, Ida Colquitt, shares these reminders about S.M.:
There are long-term affects of using S.M. Things that you post on the Internet will be there forever. Even though you may be able to delete posts, they could very well be archived on some other site. Employers, colleges, and organizations look at your Facebook page to find any raunchy behavior.
State Police are concerned about exploitation. The police have stepped up their game in catching predators and publicly helping society identify predators. You can now Google sex offenders in your neighborhood.
Predators are always watching you. Do realize that, someone is always watching you that are up to no good. The whole objective of a predator is to prey upon vulnerable people: teen and elderly, and take advantage of them. So when you post information and photos, keep in mind that someone up to no good is watching you.
Think about what you have learned today. Fix the things you can. Don’t worry about what you cannot fix. Decide to do better. And above all, 'Live Life With No Regrets.'
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