Don't try to friend President Obama's daughters on Facebook. They're not there, and the First Lady intends to keep it that way. On the Today show this morning, Michelle Obama said she doesn't think young children should be on Facebook, and that Sasha, 9, and Malia, 12, aren't allowed to have accounts.
While part of it is due to security concerns, she said, even if they weren't living in the White House, she's "not a big fan of young kids having Facebook." She went on to say, "It's not something they need. It's not necessary."
When asked if she'd let them have accounts when they leave the White House, she said perhaps. "It depends on when we leave and how old they are." So don't worry Mark Zuckerberg, she's not forever banning them from your site, just while they're young.
First food, now Facebook, kids around the country are going to start resenting this First Lady for planting all these rules and regulations in their parents' heads. But good for her for showing Americans how to set boundaries and how to say no to children.
Facebook doesn't even think it's a good idea for kids under 13 to have accounts. Their policy states:
If you are under age 13, please do not attempt to register for Facebook or provide any personal information about yourself to us. If we learn that we have collected personal information from a child under age 13, we will delete that information as quickly as possible.
Still, it's easy enough to do, and I know plenty of parents who allow their young children to have accounts. Some monitor them, others don't, and most of them argue that it's a good way to let kids keep in touch with friends and family. But like the First Lady said, kids don't need it. Let them pick up the phone or write a letter to Aunt Suzy. There are plenty of years for them to get lost in online social media later. And really, who wants to read status updates from a bunch of tweens anyway?
Do you think young children should be allowed to have Facebook accounts?
Image via cliff1066/Flickr
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