Although social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter have reported flattened growth (perhaps due to more choices and users getting picky), there is no doubt that social networking is flourishing. Just like the telephone changed the world, followed by email, now we have numerous more ways to connect and communicate.
Most social networking sites have minimum age requirements for setting up a profile. Facebook requires it's users to be 13 years old, and MySpace has similar requirements. But more and more users are ignoring those requirements and setting up profiles at younger ages.
So what's a parent to do? My own kids ask about opening an account. I tell them they need to wait until they meet the minimum age requirements, all the while their friends are socializing on these sites. I figure there must be reasoning behind the minimum age requirements, but is there? Is there some inherent risk to having a Facebook profile that is no longer prevalent when the child turns 13?
Here are some interesting articles on social media growth and statistics, and kids usage of these networking sites.
STATS: Facebook and Twitter’s Growth Flattens
Social Networking - ProCon.org
Social networks and kids: How young is too young? - CNN.com
Would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.