Blogging is one of the most popular online trends going. What makes it so fun is that you get to share your thoughts and feelings on whatever you want to hundreds and thousands of people. People will read and comment on your blogs and it’s like you’re connecting with the whole world.
Even though that’s what makes blogging so alluring, that is also what makes it dangerous. Everyone can read your posts and possibly make comments that may be offensive to you. Some may even try to get your personal information from you. These are just some of the hazardous parts of social networking. But socializing online doesn’t have to be unsafe or unpleasant. It can be a truly enjoyable experience. Use the 4 tips below for safe online blogging…
1. Don’t include your location. Try not to post anything that will tell readers where you currently reside, where you go to school, or where you can be found while hanging out with friends. People who read your blog don’t need to know where you are. If they want to know where you are, then they probably want to meet you in person for some reason–but please DON’T do this. It is very dangerous to meet up with strangers.
2. Have safety settings. You can protect your post from unwanted visitors by adjusting your account and security settings. This keeps those who harass you or make you feel uncomfortable away from your blog. Also, don’t respond to comments that are mean. You can also delete them to make sure their comments don’t influence others. Sometimes all it takes is one mean comment to make others follow suit. When you see a comment that makes you feel uncomfortable, simply remove it.
3. Be careful of what you post. Anything that you post online is open for scrutiny. Try not to post racy pictures, statuses, or blogs. There is sometimes a backlash that comes along with online posts, so make sure you choose your words and pics wisely.
4. Don’t meet anyone in person. I mentioned this earlier, but it’s worth repeating. You don’t know anyone’s intentions so it’s best to not meet them in person–especially if they are much older than you are. If you think there is someone that is trying to meet up with you, simply decline and let an adult know about the situation. You should also tell your friends to not communicate with this person. Sometimes they may be trying to get information about where you hang out from your friends. Keep a close, tight circle of friends (and adults) that you can trust. You all can help protect one another from online predators.
Blogging is the most fun when it’s safe and interactive. When there is harassment going on, there is a serious problem. Hopefully these tips have helped you become more blog-savvy so that you can protect yourself from online predators and bullies. If you need more tips, I encourage you to visit these great websites for kids and teens: www.getnetwise.org and www.connectsafely.org. Happy blogging!