are teenagers responsible enough for facebook

Isobel - posted on 09/22/2010 ( 27 moms have responded )

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Teen party cancelled after 21,000 Facebook RSVPs
Louisa Hearn
September 23, 2010 - 9:49AM

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Corey Worthington hit headlines when 500 turned up to his Melbourne party, now 21,000 are saying they'll come to a 15-year-olds birthday party in the UK.

Corey Worthington hit headlines when 500 turned up to his Melbourne party, now 21,000 are saying they'll come to a 15-year-old's birthday party in the UK.

A British teenager has had her 15th birthday party cancelled after she accidentally invited 21,000 guests to her home via Facebook.

Although she meant to invite only 15 school friends to her party, Rebecca Javeleau, of Hertfordshire, made the details of her October 7 party available to everyone on the social networking site.

Within hours she had received thousands of RSVPs from strangers, said the report in the UK's Telegraph.
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Rebecca's mother, Tracey Livesey, has since cancelled the event, but a number of Facebook groups have continued to publicise the event, inviting people along to pre-parties and after-parties in the town of Harpenden and police fear some revellers may still attempt to come.

Sergeant Lewis Ducket of Hertfordshire Police told the Telegraph: "I would urge people who may be planning to come to Harpenden for the party to make other plans. We will have officers on patrol in the area on October 7 to provide a reassuring presence and who will be able to deal with any issues, should they arise” .

Over 21,000 Facebook users have said they will attend the party, although some of the RSVPs came from fake celebrity accounts such as Justin Bieber, Susan Boyle and Rick Astley.

"Rebecca did not understand the privacy settings and she has lost her internet as a result of that - I've taken away her computer so she won't make that mistake again," her mother said.

"Her party is cancelled and she will be lucky to get a birthday card from me after this. I said she could have 15 friends along to the party but my sister-in-law said that 8000 people had said on Facebook that they were coming.”

Although Facebook continues to face criticism over the complexity of its privacy settings, the company told the Telegraph that 'event' privacy settings were "clearly" indicated.

Even so, the phenomenon of gatecrashers attending events publicised on social networking sites has had dire consequences for some households.

Earlier this year a family home in the UK's Merseyside was gatecrashed by dozens of people after a 15-year-old accidentally labelled the event public, with around 50 unwanted guests causing damage estimated at around £15,000 (25,000).

In 2008 Melbourne teenager Corey Worthington made headlines when he posted an invitation to a house party on MySpace while his parents were away, attracting 500 guests – and the anger of local police, who were pelted with glass bottles and estimated the cost of breaking up the 500-strong crowd of drunken youths at about $20,000.

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I don't know about you but my security settings are all on max...as I think everybody's should be unless they are advertising a business...my neice's is 19 and her page is HORRENDOUS!!!! and it's open to anybody who wants to see it (or stalk her).

honestly...I don't think that teenagers (and maybe some adults) should be allowed on social networking sites unless they can prove that they understand what the hell they are doing,

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Isobel - posted on 09/23/2010

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well...I think it's your job ...as a PARENT...to make sure YOU understand it before you set your child loose on the internet...the consequences are PERMANENT, and they need to understand that...my 9 yr old daughter has a half sister that is 3 months older than her(don't ask) and SHE is allowed full access to the internet...she, indeed owns both a laptop AND a blackberry.

I just think that too many people trivialize what the internet really is.

Have you ever seen "to catch a predator"? Every time they post that they are a young kid, they get men lined up around the block to come and molest them.

I find it hilarious that people won't leave their kid in a car in their driveway while they put their groceries inside but hey, what's the big deal with letting them chat with their "friends" online

Jessica - posted on 09/23/2010

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Mistakes happen. It's how we learn. What I don't understand is why this girl is being punished (having her internet, computer and birthday revoked) for an accident? That sounds really unfair to me. Her mom should have sat down with her and explained how things work before even letting her on the computer so really it's her own fault that this happened and her daughter shouldn't be punished for it.

Jodi - posted on 09/22/2010

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My 13 year old has one, but he doesn't have his password, I do. I think teens should only be on FB with full supervision. But then, I think teens should be supervised on the internet full stop. I am not talking watching over the shoulder every minute supervision, but internet access only in a common room of the house, where you can walk past and check on what's happening, a computer which has controls and logging.

Jenni - posted on 09/22/2010

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My kids aren't even close to being teens yet. When they are I plan to monitor all INET use. There are far too many dangers lerking for unsupervised kids on the internet. Not only will I monitor, we will talk about safe internet practices and potential dangers and security. I don't think teens should be allowed to have their computer in their room or some other unsupervised location. Maybe I sound a tad overbearing but there are far too many risks for vulnerable teens.

I am not an overly strict parent but when it comes to the internet; safety forgoes privacy.

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27 Comments

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Stifler's - posted on 09/27/2010

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It's facebook. It's voyeuristic to have one. If I didn't want people to be able to contact me and catch up after years of not being in contact I wouldn't have one. I had Myspace when I was a teenager and talked to randoms but I was not an attention seeking douche bag that hooked up with people off the net like kids these days are.

Isobel - posted on 09/24/2010

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she's nineteen NOW.,..and like I said...it's a freakin mess.



Nobody gets to that place alone...but when people did it during our generation, they could recover without being hounded by it for the rest of their lives.



and I have also seen twisted pages that belong to 14 year olds...my niece is just one example



ps...is there something wrong with my computer or do you not have a name listed? cause that's freakin annoying.

April - posted on 09/24/2010

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Laura...you said your niece is 19...that's considered an adult here in the US. This isn't the case of "misspent youth". I know quite a few of my college friends who got their first job when they were 21 and 22 and I am not talking about being a cashier at a grocery store. These are our teachers and police officers. Laura, your niece is almost old enough to potentially make a living in the adult world.

Jessica - posted on 09/24/2010

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Ok, no I don't think it is a joke. I do think she is being unfairly punished, however.

Quoting Laura-because clearly you have NO idea how bad it can be.

I actually find this assumption quite insulting. I DO know how bad it can get. To the point that I had to stand up and testify in court at age 16 because my friend was a cyberslut and her mom didn't care enough to ensure her safety. And no offence to your family or anything, but why aren't her parents doing something about it? E-mailing facebook or shutting down her page until she understand the dangers and consequences of her actions? Again, in a situation like your niece's, I feel the parents should take responsibility and shut down her page, ground her, whatever it takes to ensure her safety. Please don't get me wrong, I'm not saying anything about how they are as parents but this is just something I see as needing to be dealt with BY the parents.

Ez - posted on 09/23/2010

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I totally agree with Laura. I'm sure there are plenty of smart, responsible teenagers who are perfectly capable of conducting themselves appropriately on the net, but there are a shitload who aren't. And once it's out there you can't take it back. I watched a Dr Phil episode where a 17yo emailed naked pictures of herself to her boyfriend. They broke up and - SURPRISE SURPRISE - he plastered them all over FB. This girl now has to deal with the fact that there are naked photos of her out there forever. Employers could see them. Future partners or children. It's horrifying.

The idea of my daughter accessing the Internet terrifies me. If I had any doubts as to her maturity level and knowledge of security precautions, she simply would not be allowed acces. She will NEVER have a computer in her room, even if she turns out to be the most sensible teenager to walk the planet. There is obviously an element of parental responsibility in educating children on the consequences of posting things on the Net (ie, don't send naked photos, any asshole can save them and send them viral), but teenagers are impulsive by nature.

Rosie - posted on 09/23/2010

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my underage teen will not have access to facebook without me having the password. i will monitor it like a hawk, lol! no thousands of people showing up at my house, nor will there be 1 crazy showing up cause they liked what they saw. after that if they havn't learned how to manage facebook i'd be surprised.

Isobel - posted on 09/23/2010

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and I have half a mind to display my neice's page to explain to you what I am talking about, because clearly you have NO idea how bad it can be...I'm pretty sure she's NEVER getting a job with all the pics of her with a bong, her naked with hundred dollar bills all over herself.

yeah, she's a mess. and that would be enough to deal with on it's own...never mind the fact that now, she can never...ever, move on without proof of her misspent youth.

Isobel - posted on 09/23/2010

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so we agree then...I was under the impression that you thought it was a joke.

Jessica - posted on 09/23/2010

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Quoting Laura-well...I think it's your job ...as a PARENT...to make sure YOU understand it before you set your child loose on the internet

I'm pretty sure that is what I said.

I'm not condoning the constant use of the internet and mobiles and what not with children. My son won't be getting a phone until he has displayed [to me] a certain level of maturity and understands: what it's for (emergencies), not to give his number to just anyone and the dangers and risks having a phone can bring.

I am just saying that in this particular situation that the daughter has done nothing wrong. It was an unfortunate mistake which wouldn't have occurred if the mom was really involved in the internet safety issue.

When I was about 13, my dad sat me down and had a 2 hour discussion/lesson on computers, how to use them and how to keep safe online. He would give us these fun lessons once a month, just to keep us reminded/updated and to show us the latest software and games he had bought. In all three of us [brother, sister and me] we grew up understanding that although the world is a wonderful place to explore, there are certain dangers [people] that we should always be aware of and to inform upon. (I have an awesome dad :D).

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I feel this is more a failure of facebook security rather than imaturity of the teenager, I know several adults who could be guilty of doing the same thing, just from lack of judgement/ knowledge.

Facebook should automatically default to the maximum security levels to help reduce this issue, as a lot of younger people are oblivious to security settings.

I think that a more worrying aspect of teenagers using FB is them friending anyone and everyone, I had a girl who was no more than 13 years old friend me because our names were the same, and I suppose she wanted to look at my page and ONLY my friends can look at my page. That to me is asking for trouble because they do not know what kinds of people they are friending!

Jessica - posted on 09/23/2010

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Quoting Laura-yeah sure...no employer will be affected by seeing the pic of you drunk and stripping at a party when you were 17



Sarcasm aside, I said that no DECENT employer will NOT hire you based on pictures of when you were a child/teenager. NOT that they will not be affected by it. And even if they were affected by it, unless your 17 and it was taken a week ago, then it is obsolete how you spent your time as a teenager because now you are an adult and ANYONE who forms an opinion of someone based on photos of their teenage years is, IMO, an idiot. When I went for my interview, they checked out my facebook page and at the time there were some pretty revealing photos on there. They still hired me because I was the best candidate for the job and because they were impressed with my maturity levels as an ADULT. NOT as a CHILD.



Quoting Laura-I'm actually a free-range parent...and I do believe in letting children learn through exploration...but like you said most PARENTS don't even know how dangerous social networking sites can be...so how can you help guide them through it?



This here is where I feel a lot of things can go wrong in the parent child relationship. IMO it is wrong to hold your child back from a potentially positive learning curve/experience just because you don't understand/know how something works. IMO, it is then the parents job to learn more about the site/area/person your child is trying to interface with. Being a parent is not just about protecting your child, helping them grow and helping them learn. Being a parent is a rich opportunity to expand your own knowledge and become the best PARENT you can be. How can I expect my son to do his maths homework if he finds it difficult and I am unwilling to help because I don't know much about/understand what he is working on.



Like I have said before, in some situations it is a parents job to take on the responsibility of their children's actions and I feel that the situation in the OP is one of these. Accidents happen. That's life.

~♥Little Miss - posted on 09/23/2010

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Facebook can be a fun place, or very dangerous. I think cell phones are worse with all the "sexting". By the time my children are old enough to use facebook, it will be obsolete...and something else with be out there. I think with the proper supervision teenagers should be allowed on it. Same idea as having a license at 16. If your child is not responsible, they should not drive. If your child is not responsible, they should not be online...but how realistic is that these days?

When I was 16, cell phones were for the rich...now I have seen children 11 years old with them. It is a scary world out there, and we are here as parents to try to make it as safe as possible.

Isobel - posted on 09/23/2010

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yeah sure...no employer will be affected by seeing the pic of you drunk and stripping at a party when you were 17.

I'm actually a free-range parent...and I do believe in letting children learn through exploration...but like you said most PARENTS don't even know how dangerous social networking sites can be...so how can you help guide them through it?

Jessica - posted on 09/23/2010

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I also don't understand quite a few aspects of my job. But I'm learning by doing it. Not knowing how is no excuse not to try (one of my dad's favorite sayings). We can't bubble wrap them forever, they have to learn in order to grow and mature and I'm pretty sure this girl won't be making that mistake again.

Jessica - posted on 09/23/2010

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I don't understand how facebook works most of the time, in fact I don't understand a lot of things. It doesn't mean I shouldn't be allowed to learn about them and try and figure out how it works.

No decent employer would not hire someone based on how they acted as children. It is unethical.

She is being punished, her mom stated "Her party is cancelled and she will be lucky to get a birthday card from me after this. I said she could have 15 friends along to the party but my sister-in-law said that 8000 people had said on Facebook that they were coming.”

She is basically impying that her daughter did this on purpose. Giving internet access to your child is not a grave and heavy thing if you, as a parent, are responsible. Children, teenagers included, sometimes don't understand the consequences of their actions which is why we, as parents, should stand up and TAKE responsibility for them when mistakes happen.

If this were my son, I would use this opportunity to explain and teach. Not to punish for no apparent reason and try to shove blame onto someone who did nothing wrong.

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Your privacy settings don't matter when you post on someones wall because if their privacy isn't set things are still seen by everyone. Before kids even go on the internet they should know that 1. Anything you put on there is no longer private whether you have privacy set to max on not because anyone can hack into a facebook page, and 2. Never post your personal information like your address and phone #.
I got a message from facebook saying someone attempted to open my page from an unrecognized location. And my husband has had to change all his passwords because of the same type of crap. Kids just need to understand that what they do on the internet can follow them forever.

Isobel - posted on 09/23/2010

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but if you don't understand how facebook works...should you be on it?

and the thing is too...these kids are posting stupid pics of themselves and they have no idea what they are going to want to do for a living when they become adults.

any job that requires a security check includes social networking sites in their search...and it doesn't matter what your privacy settings are...if you submit to a security check...they're gonna see all your crap.

I don't think she's being punished...I think her parents realized the gravity of giving a child access to the internet.

Yes, it's hilarious...but it's also terrifying...how many pedophiles now have her address? how many serial killers? how many rapists?

Sarah - posted on 09/23/2010

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In the this particular instance, it could have just as easily happened to me, as I'm pretty computer illiterate! Seems like an honest mistake rather than a lack of judgement or a deliberate attempt to invite thousands of guests.

In general, I think there will be teenagers who are sensible enough to use it properly, and those who won't be (as with many things) I think that maybe parents should take a more active role in supervising a young teenagers access to FB and other internet sites. :)

Nicole - posted on 09/22/2010

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my son is 10 years old and last year we made the big move from NZ to Australia,i did not even know what face book was then lol.all my sons friends started adding me so the could talk to him so in the end we decided to make him a page but the rules were that we could access his page when ever we wanted to check on things.a little while back i found a mess from this boy staying stay away from my f$##@ing girlfriend.his response was piss off so his face book was disabled for a month and he couldnt use it.hes been ok so far he doesn't add anyone with out asking.sometimes i have to remind him to settle down and stop writting silly things but other than that its a great cheap way to keep in contact with his friends and family over the ditch.

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My kids will only have a page if I have full access to it. The internet can be a very scary place if its not used responsibly.
Someone created a myspace account under my name with half naked pictures of me and I haven't been able to get it removed yet :(

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