Sharing is not always caring for kids
PARENTS who overshare photos of their children could be putting them at risk of longterm mental health issues, experts have warned.
Internet safety experts are concerned about so-called “sharenters” making money off their children’s photos via social media sponsorship.
Cyber Safety Solutions director Susan McLean said, at a recent school talk, a Year 2 student said “she couldn’t delete her Instagram because she was a brand ambassador”.
She said that the trend was unethical and could attract predators or create self-esteem issues for young people.
“It gives young children a false sense of self-worth and popularity,” she said.
“It’s worse than a beauty pageant as it’s out there for the whole world to see.”
Esafety Commissioner Julie Inman Grant said parents ideally should not share their kids’ photos on public accounts.
“Sharing images of your children online – often referred to as ‘sharenting’ – without their knowledge or consent may lead to problems for your child down the track, ranging from embarrassment to developing a poor understanding of consent and respect,” she said.
But Bec Graham, who runs @allaboutharlowrayne for her daughter Harlow, 6, with more than 34,000 followers, said it had helped them bond.
Ms Graham, who has posted more than 3500 photos since Harlow was 18 months old, said she had received thousands of dollars worth of clothes as part of “collaborations”. She said she spent several hours a day screening out suspicious accounts, and kept locations secret.
“Harlow demonstrates a high level of self-respect and, if anything, her confidence … has elevated,” she said.