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Posting pix: How cautious should we be?

The other day I was talking to a psychologist who described a time when he was driving into a busy 4-way intersection on a highway frontage road – one of the craziest intersections I’ve ever heard described. He came to a stop, he said, and suddenly found he just couldn’t take his foot off the brake, paralyzed by a voice in his head saying, “Be careful. Don’t move. Don’t get in that driver’s way. Careful!” He said it was then that he realized he’d heard those words countless times as a child, and that they’d become almost a mantra in his head, making him overly cautious as an adult. For him the solution, he realized, was simply to go forward, make that move. He has since been much more decisive, he said, and – as he related this experience – I was thinking about the similar messages kids and parents are getting from so many directions about young people’s Internet use. Of course we want them to be safe, but we don’t want to clip their wings altogether. This article at offers that perspective – it’s one of the few I’ve seen in the news media questioning the message that posting pictures in parenting and family blogs is highly risky. For more on both sides of this, see “Violating our kids’ privacy” and “Online privacy: Photos out of control.”

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