Many children and young adults, drawn to the latest social media websites and apps available today, are constantly posting and viewing pictures, videos, and messages online.  The aim is to create an online impression or identity for others to “like” and admire.  Many of these websites and apps, however, have little privacy protections in place.  As a result, what kids post can be seen and forwarded without limit.  In addition, posts often draw responses, some of which can be plain rude and hurtful.

It is no secret that young students sometimes use poor judgment when they are using social media.  So, how do we teach children to protect themselves online?  The Cyberbullying Research Center, has many resources.  Authors Justin W. Patchin, Ph.D. and Sameer Hinduja, Ph.D. have created a great resource titled A Student’s Guide To Personal Publishing.    This free online guide addresses how students should post their offline or online content and provides guidelines that can “inform how best to make and share ideas, opinions, and multi-media in a way that does not lead to negative repercussions.”  Resources like these offer an important step toward educating students on how to protect themselves and post responsibly.

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