Social Networking Gets Really Personal
Social networks connect kids online. But a new technology takes connecting a step further -- to face-to-face meet-ups. New programs called location-sharing use geographic information from your smart phone to connect people to specific places, as well as to each other. You may have heard of some of the most popular ones: Loopt, foursquare, Gowalla and Facebook Places. Most of these programs are designed for smart phones, but they can also be accessed on the Web. Once you join, you can post your actual physical location.
And that's what makes location sharing a no-go for kids and teens. These programs bring up two big issues: safety and privacy. Since they let you post your location, they can expose your kid's whereabouts to anyone they "friend" -- or, in some cases, to any other user of the program. Also, advertisers are already using social mapping to target users with ads and incentives to visit their businesses (most of which areRead More »from Are Your Kids Being Tracked?