Sharenting – parents sharing kids’ information… should we care? Should they care? Paul and I connected on the Serious Privacy podcast with Drs. Mariea Hoy and Alexa K. Fox on their recent publication, “Smart Devices, Smart Decisions? Implications of Parents’ Sharenting for Children’s Online Privacy,” in Journal of Public Policy & Marketing. This research explored how parents, specifically mothers, post about their children on social media and how they share their children’s personally identifiable information (PII) in a marketing context.
As a relatively new grandmother, do I need the parents’ permission to share photos of their children? Instinct could go either way. If they provided me a physical photo, they would have no idea who I show it to. But if they provide me a digital photo, I could both share it electronically or print it out and share it physically. But with the original physical photo, I could also scan it in or take a photo of a photo and share it.
So, okay, I asked my daughter and her response was anything she shares on social media, I am welcome to also share.
But we’ve all seen it, the parents who provide a digital diary of their kids on social media. We basically know everything the kids do. Is that too much? Should there be privacy? Are those kids going to want information about them deleted later?
Most privacy laws seem to address information from kids not information about kids.
It’s quite the conundrum.
On the other hand, there are people who other than posting they were pregnant and then later gave birth – we see nothing, hear nothing about the kids. And nowadays with so many zoom meetings… do we see kids? you betcha. But that’s not sharenting, that’s inadvertence.
The studies in the sharenting area are pretty informative and subject to quite a bit of advancement as we recognize there is such a thing. And not only is there such a thing, perhaps we should consciously reduce it.