(This is a hypothetical question, I'm not a dad yet)

I imagine that when I'll have a child, I'll want to register a Facebook account for him, mainly so I can easily tag all the photos of him I'll accumulate.

  1. On the one hand, he might grow up and become a privacy freak, and become angry with me for doing this without asking him...
  2. On the other hand - he might regret not having access to a digital, sorted and searchable photo archive of his life.

Do you think such a move is ok, or is it better to wait until he's ... 6 years old, or whatever age kids go on Facebook these days?

asked 05 Nov '10, 22:49

ripper234's gravatar image

accept rate: 100%

edited 07 Nov '10, 18:36

Tammy's gravatar image

Tammy ♦♦

(23 Mar '11, 19:29) ripper234

Disclaimer: I am such a privacy freak and please don't call us freaks. It has nothing freakish about it, we just like our privacy and not having everything about us on public display for the entire world to see.

Quotes are from: http://www.facebook.com/terms.php

  1. The Facebook Terms & Conditions do not allow you to create accounts for other persons and they also only allow one account per person. "You will not provide any false personal information on Facebook, or create an account for anyone other than yourself without permission.", "You will not use Facebook if you are under 13."
  2. Especially when you child is in puberty he will find some of the pictures and stories about him, which you think are cute, 150% embarrassing. Possibly making those pictures available to all of his school 'friends' is not a great way of bonding :)
  3. A digital, sorted, searchable photo archive of his life is a great idea I think, +1 on the idea, -1 on the means you are proposing :)

I would definitely not trust it to a company known for stomping on privacy and selling everything you upload to whoever wants to have it ("When you use an application, your content and information is shared with the application."). Even if you delete the photos and comments etc., Facebook is still most probably keeping everything. Yes they say otherwise in their terms and conditions, but take a look at everything that has so far happened on Facebook concerning privacy. Great read: http://yro.slashdot.org/story/10/10/21/1445230/Why-Facebook-Wont-Stop-Invading-Your-Privacy?from=rss

How about creating a photo album (maybe an electronic version, sure), but keep it private for now (i.e. private private, not on a public website named Facebook and set the profile to private). If your child wants to share the photo of him leaving some poop on the lawn when he was 4, that's his decision, but don't make it for him please!


answered 05 Nov '10, 23:57

Alexander's gravatar image

accept rate: 10%


Indeed, one could argue the reverse, that those who give up too much privacy are the freaks.

(06 Nov '10, 03:52) Kyralessa

No offense meant :) Yeah, I figured there must be a legal clause, and besides, I sympathize and understand your motivation.

(06 Nov '10, 07:54) ripper234

BTW, I wonder how long it takes Facebook to invent "Facebook kids" - some kind of technology to allow kids smaller than 13 to create an account without the risk of being exposed to anything their parents don't want them exposed to. If I were a kid now, I can't imagine waiting until I'm 13 years old just because someone at Facebook decided on this limitation :)

(06 Nov '10, 07:56) ripper234

I agree I've been thinking the same thing...facebook for kids & pensioners.

(06 Nov '10, 08:15) Emi

@ripper234: The age 13 thing is probably not Facebook's decision. Notice the age verifications on computer game websites etc.? They all state you need to be at least 13. AFAIK there's a law in the US about that.

(06 Nov '10, 18:19) Alexander

I just talked someone aged ~ 10 in my family. She said that kids these days simply sign up to Facebook with a fake age, then change it to their real age after registration :)

(03 Dec '10, 10:17) ripper234

Sure that's how it works and I bet there are tons of people with more than one account and people sharing their passwords with friends etc. Doesn't make it good or compliant with terms of service and laws etc. And when they are 15 they get a fake id saying they are 21...

(04 Dec '10, 17:09) Alexander

I think #2 is a great point. Setting aside the issue of the Facebook Terms of Service and so forth, he won't want to have anything to do with an account with his baby pictures on it when he's old enough to have the account himself. And the people he'd friend aren't necessarily the people you'd friend with it, and you might not want all of them seeing everything he posts once he's old enough to start posting.

(07 Apr '11, 23:47) Kyralessa

My kids' school has a safe, only accessible within the school, social network, along the lines of facebook, called schoolbook, for the children to use.

(14 Apr '11, 15:30) Meg Stephenson
showing 5 of 9 show 4 more comments

If you do want to keep a digital copy of your child's photos on facebook there is no need to create a facebook account for them. Many parents (including myself) have albums of their children's photos under their own account. The benefits are that you can easily share the photos with friends and realitives who do not live close to you. The pictures are not usually tagged with the baby's name, although you can tag a photo with someone's name even if they don't have a facebook account. The convention is if you post a picture of another person's child you would tag one of their parents. This would also give that parent the option to 1) untag the photo and 2) ask you to remove it if they are uncomfortable.

If you did choose this route I would be sure to set the privacy settings on the album to friends only (I believe the default might be friends of friends).

There are also several online programs where you can upload photo albums and easily grant access to certain friends and family members. Two I can think of off hand our http://www.shutterfly.com and http://www.snapfish.com


answered 06 Nov '10, 14:03

Tammy's gravatar image

Tammy ♦♦
accept rate: 18%

A non-digital alternative that we are currently exploring is this: http://www.blurb.com/make/booksmart

(06 Nov '10, 18:26) Alexander

Also, people can see your photo album without being on Facebook. You just send them the unique link to the album, and they can see it without a Facebook account. As far as I know the album isn't publicly searchable, so you have to receive the link in order to find it.

(07 Apr '11, 23:48) Kyralessa

@Kyralessa: Which I would see as a con rather than a pro for facebook. They may change their mind about the album being searchable at any time (they have a track record of changing their privacy settings for the worse) and if you have a non-digital album or some other digital photo album software, you can actually choose if you want everyone to see everything, or if you need a password or whatever. Of course it depends on the service, but at least you can choose one that does things the way you want them.

(09 Apr '11, 04:50) Alexander
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Asked: 05 Nov '10, 22:49

Seen: 9,833 times

Last updated: 14 Apr '11, 15:30