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At what age can let you child loose on the internet ?





rafifaisal
Have two growing children myself I was wondering at what age I could and should let them loose on the internet.
On one side you know that computer knowledge, internet and office applications are a must for their future
BUT
on the other side I know their are all sorts of freaks and freaky sites on WWW which just lure innocent children.

So what do you people think is an appropriate age and how should I proceed in order to give them the best start ?
hunnyhiteshseth
The best age is I think 4yrs.
Idoru
I'd say that it depends on the child and how well you know them. If your relationship
is built on trust you can let them prove their worth. Actually, it's a quite good enviroment
for doing that, since it isn't hard to check what the machine has been used for.

Then again, the child need to be developed enough to know the difference between
what you agree is right and wrong, without having to get into every detail. Tricky,
but I belive it's the best thing to feel ahead and give a longer and longer leach.
Restrictions, though, is propablly good, such as timelimits, etc.

Best of luck!
rightclickscott
I say don't let them loose at all. Monitor what they do on the internet and set up a block list, or buy one. While you may say that it's good for their development, the last thing they'll be looking at are things that will help them grow. Let them go on kid friendly sites, and once they're tweens, let them go onto more sites, and when they're teenagers, let them go on whatever they want. It may sound harsh, but kids will try to break away from their parents once they become teenagers, and the best thing to do is let them break away, but still let them know you're there for them. Letting them do what they want on the internet is an unspoken way of doing this. If you're concerned about them going on adult sites, then, still, block the sites, but, once again, it may be harsh, but teenagers may just want porn, you never know...
hunnyhiteshseth
rightclickscott wrote:
I say don't let them loose at all. Monitor what they do on the internet and set up a block list, or buy one. While you may say that it's good for their development, the last thing they'll be looking at are things that will help them grow. Let them go on kid friendly sites, and once they're tweens, let them go onto more sites, and when they're teenagers, let them go on whatever they want. It may sound harsh, but kids will try to break away from their parents once they become teenagers, and the best thing to do is let them break away, but still let them know you're there for them. Letting them do what they want on the internet is an unspoken way of doing this. If you're concerned about them going on adult sites, then, still, block the sites, but, once again, it may be harsh, but teenagers may just want porn, you never know...


Reading that, I want to also add, do what you wanted your parents to do to you when you were of your child's age.

BTW, whats the problem in kids watching the porn?
Josso
I was on the internet when I was 9 but that's when we got it in the 90s. With AOL you can get parental controls which block innapropriate sites to a certain age. I had to take it off when I was 9 though because it blocked Diablo II. By the way I don't in any way advise getting AOL Confused. Something with parental controls might be in order until they get into their teens maybe though.
Arnie
You should at least seriously tell them about the dangers. And don't give them acces when you're not around. Always keep an eye on your children when they're surfing the Internet. Filtering or spying software won't be required in that case. If you do use it, it's better to let them know that you do.

As they get older, they can grow into more freedom of course. But a good age to start limited "free" surfing would be 14. Not that they can't use Internet at all before that, but I'd be careful.
hunnyhiteshseth
Arnie wrote:
And don't give them acces when you're not around. Always keep an eye on your children when they're surfing the Internet.


Come on, they are children & not some criminals that you have to watch them regularly.
meet in rio
I think kids should be allowed to go online as soon as they want, but that the computer should be in a busy family room and that the kids should be educated about the dangers of the net etc.

We first got the internet when I was ten or so, and I was left alone almost from the beginning. All I did was make horse websites and go on Yahoo chat, anyway.
Ghost Rider103
A good age to let them surf the net frely would be 14, but I got into the nternet when I was about 11, and when I was 11 I was into guns, M16, M4, etc... and the program that my parents used to block adult sites had a check list and the default was on so gun sites, religion sites sexually sites, and much more were all turned on, and just by tyring to figure out how to turn it off, I discovered the whole list, and how to monitor everything when I was just 11, lol so even if you give them internet acess at a young age, it dosent mean the parental contrpol system will always be working, it is a very easy process to change, but you could also set up a password for it, but when you do there is two names (usually) an adminstrator name which always has nothing checked on the list and some other ame that you or whoever starts it will pick, make sure you set the password for both, if you want to block certain sites. But I was asking my parents about why they had guns blocked, and they said it was just a default setting but.....who knows right? Laughing
Tulkamir
Any age at which they are able to comprehend what they read seems a good one to me.

At the smae time, you shouldn't be letting them on at a young age without supervision. And I don't mean one of those idiotic net-nanny systems. If they are on the net, take the time and sit next to em. Atleast until they're old enough to handle it on their own.
Jaiye
i got the internet back when I was 10 in '96, i've been able to bypass any lock since I was 12. I don't think that having that access has been a negative to my life at all.
igor123d
I don't think there's a general guideline that can work for all children in these situations. They all have various degrees of sophistication and maturity that have to be taken into account. In my view though, even attempitng to shield a child by using various limitations on the sites he is allowed to visit it a hopeless endeavor as undesired content will unvariably filter through. The only alternative is constant supervision, but that's not always a possiblity.
valkyrie-heavens
I'd say until there old enough that u feel they know how to just close the internet window if something comes up on the screen that they know is inappropiate. or that they know better than to go into chat rooms, ect.
I have a 11yr and 12 yr cousin who still don't know any better and have gotten themself into trouble with the police because of their missuse of the internet. Now my Aunt won't let them on any computer at all. So it's up to the parents discretion and how much they trust their child.
Helios
Any age, truely. But you must 'protect' your kids from stuff that they should be exposed to at their age.
Also, try not to use CRT monitors near little kids. It damages their brain.
(T-Torsionic waves and that typical monitor radiation = NOT good)
jveezy
I definitely think that somewhere around 13 or 14 is a good time. I would recommend showing them how to use the internet for homework help around 10 or 11. Whenever you do let them loose, keep the computer in the family room so you can glance at it every so often while watching tv on the couch or something.
Ratman2050
I would say a range from 9-12 thats a good area.
Hammy
I think i've been on online since i was about 10 or 11. Im not sure.
But icne then i've beenon msn and had an e-mail and stuff.
And seriously now, I'm really bored of msn. It's a pile of c**p. I'vehad so many experiences on msn, i feel that it's better not to go on it , than go on it. Just for personal reasons.

Hammy.
pr0j3ct
ive been on line since i was 13 currently 19 and i have seen alot of weird stuff on the internet. which may have corrupted my mind. but id say 13 is a good age with a little supervision.
Vrythramax
I, and this is just my opinion, would allow them on the net with certain precautions taken (ie net nanny software, that kind of thing) at jsu about any age, but free unretricted addess wouldn't come until they were old enough to understand what is truly going on...between 12-14 I would think. By that time they have a pretty good worldy knowlege just from school and from the people they hang out with. This is all case subjective however, some children are much more advanced that others, and some children have lived very sheltered lives. So in those cases the ages for free access would, and in my opinion should, be taken into account and access times/ages modified accordingly.
pjv
As early as they can be, who knows, ur child might be the next mr. gates. There are lots of great sites for children out there. It would be fun to see them learn through this digital box. If you're worried about those nasty sites, you can keep install some nice apps that would stop them from accessing the ugly side of the net. Maybe cyber patrol or net nanny or any adult content filtering application that do their job well will keep you at peace.
magneto_ms
In my opinion, you can give ur kids www access if u think they know enough to use them. It would be wise to let them know that there are a lot of dangers that the net is cursed with and they should stay away from them. As they start off it would be better if you don't let them chat with strangers on the net. I believe you should have a site blocker too. And another thing that most people recommend is that you should place your computer in a common room so that there is no 'too much' privacy that would tempt them to use the net for any inappropriate use.
izcool
I started using a PC (without internet) when I was around 10 years old, this was around the year 1999. A year later, in 2000 (when I was 11 of course), my parents said that I could start using the Internet. I was using dialup at the time and spent a lot of time playing games and reading stuff about Harry Potter (I was into that stuff back then lol, sounds funny now), so they upgraded me to Cable internet. I'm still on a highspeed connection (DSL though, but it's just as good as Cable) and I turned out OK. Very Happy I've surpassed my parents on the use of computers and I've done stuff that they'd never dream of doing, like building computers and fixing them. That's when I started.

- Mike.
avk
I think maybe 7/8 yrs of age would be fine..

But however u shud keep them away from Porn Kinda things...

Haha
Mental2k
The younger the better i say, the younger a child is the easier it is to learn how to do things, most children aren't gonna think of looking at porn until they're a bit older and as for them being groomed? well thats more likey to happen at a slightly older age anyway, when they can actually make up an excuse to get away from their parents watchful eye.

Best scenario is to put on some software that can track what your kid is doing online, the if you see anything you dont like on it you can tell them not to go on it. This way you know what they're looking at, and it means they can't just find a way round the "net nanny" you use (trust me kids will figure it out, we got round our school one on a regular basis). If they continue to look at stuff you dont want them to then you discipline them ony your own terms.

But thats just my $0.02
Davidgr1200
It depends on what your kids are like. If you know you can trust them then show them how Internet works, they're going to need it for school anyway. It's like anything else, teach them to use it wisely, and surf with them when you start off.
hellrahul
Hey@


I think there shiould be no age limit. But parents should teach their child about it before they are exposed to internet.
THE11thROCK™
Any age will do IMO. As long as you try to install some firewall or filter to block some sites. I guess monitoring would also be better. It is in your prerogative on what type of information or content your children can view. Try to take out at least some time off your own in a day to guide your kid. It's better that you set-up some moral guidelines to give them some form of protection. You don't want your kid watching some orgy or hard porn or a man being grossly beheaded. Just giving some examples, don't make a hate thread out of this. That's my take on that.
OutlawSpirit
if i have a computer when i have kids... then they can use the PC... they can play games on the PC... but i probably wont let them use the internet till they fully understand everything
chrismen
I remember when the internet was starting to take off my parents had all these internet protection things and I hated it. It wouldn't let me do anything. Most of the time I couldn't even search yahoo (it was before google even existed). I would say that once they are 11 or so it is fine. Just have a talk about the weidos on the net.
Navan91
Get them a computer by 10 and net by the age of 13...!

I got my computer when i was around 6-7 and net at 12! Very Happy
Aiz
From personal experience I can say that the attempts of parents to prevent kids from accessing things they shouldn't aren't that effective at all. I wasn't allowed to play games, but I did. I wasn't allowed to watch stuff (TV, dramas, etc because they would take time away from my studying, I'm Chinese, go figure) but I did. I wasn't supposed to chat/IM online, but I did. I wasn't supposed to use the computer to do anything else other than for studying, but I did. My parents tried all in their power, >.> they even chose looking over my shoulders when I was on the computer but that never stopped me.

I think it's more important to teach your kids early on what's good for them, what's right, and what's not than trying to keep away from the bad things and hope they never find out, because they will.
Snafoo
I have a daughter, and i will not let her go online alone until she is at a decent age, maybe as late as 16. Really it depends on the child, if your child is sensible and understands the dangers or is quite mature for their age, i cant see a problem with it. But if your child is quite naive then it is a bad idea because people prey on children such as those.
Also if you have a webcam or microphone, id advise you to keep those away from your children for a while, as leaving them alone with those things is asking for trouble. You never know who they might be talking to.

I would advise you to sit with your child and help them learn the basics and warn them of chatting to strangers and not to give out personal information. Also it is fairly easy to protect them from certain sites so that isnt really much of an issue, as long as you know what they are using the internet for you shouldnt have problems. As long as your child is well informed of the risks and understands what you are concerned about, they should be fine. Smile
lunatic07
ive been on the internet since i was 8 years old, and i like grew up with the internet, and learned alot way more then i thought i would learn it was cool still is they got alot of things here its good to learn young, al you have to do just go over the rules dont give your address dont accept random things and all over and over.
st_jimi
well you can let them on the net and juat use parent controls to stop them from going on any bad sites and under no curcumstances chat rooms but let them use msn because people say it bad because you meet strangers as we all know this is rubbish because you only tlk to people who you've added so they only tlk to peple they know, and if a stranger does add them they can just block them

hope it helps
jipmerite
I think this topic has gone very well. I personall have nothing I can add as my daughter is still 10 months old. But I really have got some good points from reading all your thoughts. Thanks for that.

It is true, being computer literate is essential for a bright future these days. But as parents we would and should worry of how the Internet affects our children.
Vandalyzed
I say any age is good for kids to get on the internet. It's the way things are today, information, education, etc at your fingertips.

My kids are 9 and 5. When my oldest was younger, I put a kids browser on the computer. This thing loaded up automatically and would only access sites that I pre-approved.

Being young, they only needed things like cartoonnetwork.com or nickjr.com, but now my nine year old has access to the computer without the limitations of the kids browser. My 5 yr old still goes thru the browser.

And really, neither of my kids have any interest in going to other sites than what they intend. Of course, they're still young yet, not teenagers.......so god help me. lol

But I think they'll do fine.
Traveller
Navan91 wrote:
At what age can let you child loose on the internet ?


If "let loose" means "to have any access at all," the age would be less than if "let loose" means "to have unrestricted access." Of course, the age would be even higher, still, if "let loose" means "to release menacing power." In any case, each child is a different person, and has different abilities to handle responsibility.

I know 12-year-olds who can handle it, and 40-year-olds who can't (even within the same household), so each child must be considered as the individual he or she is, instead of trying to impose a blanket generalisation. Look at the child's handling of other responsibilities: schoolwork, household chores, friends, pets, etc. If he or she neglects those things, or is easily manipulated by others in the real world, he or she could be in great danger in the abstract realm of the cyberworld. Even if they do not encounter that danger directly, themselves, they could bring it upon the parents (e.g. financially and/or legally).

Thus, parents should evaluate each child's readiness separately after careful consideration of other aspects of the child's life. In addition, if the parents are not already aware of the child's handling of other things, then the parents need to evaulate their own responsibilities.
Shanghai_Dragon
I think a child would be ready to use the internet once the parent has taught them about things in the world. Things like violence, sex, and drugs. Age is only a number. Some children mature faster than others
RoughitforGreen247
Really, the key to the whole protection thing is about trust. As a parent that did not grow up on the internet (or I assume you didn't) you have to accept that your child will soon be more proficient at the technology than you can. I know it sounds silly, but putting physical restrictions on these things makes them morally acceptable in your children's eyes. Instead, make it seem as if abusing your trust is such a heinous act that you would not even believe your children capable of it. This will, in the long run, be far more effective.

I was able to circumvent my parents password protection to play games by the time I was 10, and by now I doubt there is a security system out there - that they could afford - that I wouldn't be able to either hack through or sweep from my computer.

I would put them out there as soon as you think they are capable of understanding what they find.
Slammer
I wouldnt say theres an age per-say. I think as soon as they are capable age of being able to move the mouse and use the keyboard, as young as possible, but with proper supervision, and filtering. There is no age that is too young as long as they are supervised!
ivanegues
Jaiye wrote:
i got the internet back when I was 10 in '96, i've been able to bypass any lock since I was 12. I don't think that having that access has been a negative to my life at all.


As this show, it doesnt matter the age, it matter the eduction and the principles that are planted in the child.

It is not a matter of forbiding, but a matter of educaction.
(there is always a matter to go the forbiden land, what they should know the good and bad consecuences for their future)

Im not a parent but when the time came probably i would be very careful.
Shocked keeping my eyes open.
shwetanshu
i was introduced to net by my elder cousin at the age of 14 but i personally feel 12 is the right age with strict supervison!!!
nilsmo
The best solution to the problem is putting the computer in a public place of the house and having a parent keep a watch on the computer. Limiting internet access is not a good solution.
Vrythramax
I don't think it's all a matter of "Parental Conrols", as has been pointed, each child is differant and should be considered on thier merits. However, I do honestly believe that some parental supervision is needed until the child is fully mature to thier surroundings. There's is alot of stuff out there that a kid shouldn't be subjected too.
Mster
I would let them oin the net at any age, but put a logget there just for saftey. If i see they look througgh stuf that is just not appropiate I would have a nnice serious talk with them
jipmerite
Can anyone give me the name of such a Kids browser? I think it'll be useful for a lot of people.

These days most house holds have PCs. And different parents have different views on when a child should be exposed to the Internet. But we have to keep in mind that the kids would talk among themselves and if a child that has no access hears of the wonders the other kids see on the internet, the child might feel deprived...

Just somethng that crosses my mind..
tylergram
Deleted
Jaiye
tylergram wrote:
My son is 9 and has been learning how to use computers since age 3 or so. We started with simple kids' games that taught how to use the mouse and where the keys were and all. Now he has his own laptop (not connected to the net) and is allowed online from the family computer in the living room. He recently got his first email address. But...he's completely supervised when he's on that computer.
Like most of you, I think it's very important that he develop good computer skills. They're pretty much a necessity now. However, I'm not letting him completely "loose" until he's 18.
I've used computers with the blocking software before that blocked a lot of sites that shouldn't have been blocked. Maybe they'll have something better in the next couple years before I let him start surfing on his own with more limited supervision. Otherwise, I think I'll just go with a monitoring program that doesn't block, but allows me to see sites he's visited, etc.
Even 17 year olds are impulsive and not fully matured in some ways. No matter how much we talk to them about what's acceptable and what's not...they won't always listen or follow the rules. That's a given. While in everyday life, sometimes it's okay to let them break the rules and discover the real life consequences on their own (how else will they grow to be independent?), the internet isn't the best place to let them sink or swim.


it's good that you have monitoring software on there. I assure you, I learned more while figuring out how to get around stuff then ever. I mean if he's going to be really computer literate, your software will most likely not work, but he'll learn a lot while bypassing it.
jaime_thom
I would say start them off on any computer at like 6 or so, with games like GCompris (a free educational game), but keep supervision until they are about 14ish. To filter stuff online, you could use DansGuardian...

I guess that I tend to be lenient with the web stuff, oh well Confused
tylergram
Deleted
izimngcubes15
Around 12 or 13? Because there are many bad things on the web, either chat rooms or inappropriate websites for children, etc. I think it would be more safe if you limit the times they are on the internet and be very strict about it.
budddha
Great parental controls exist through many different services and sources. Kids should be on the net,in my opinion, the second they can read. The net can teach a kid to really look, dig and find in a world were in reality everything is already laid out for them. I hope that makes sense. I've been on the net since the tender age of 8 and I owe my parents for the things i am able to do and find today. Computer skills help people everywhere everyday through all walks of life.
Jman2425
Well, I know that there are some dangerous things out there on the internet that young children should stay away from, but it is ultimately the parents' decision. In my opinion, you have to know the child to decide whether or not he/she should be allowed on the internet. There is no set age. If the parents feel that the child is trust worthy enough and is strong enough in their views of right and wrong, then the child should be given a chance until they have proven that they cannot be trusted.
LukeakaDanish
My oppinion:

First thing: Dont think that blocking sites works - kids are way to clever so they will get what they want - i did - proxy sites are always there, and even at my old school i managed to find Both games and pr0n (though i didnt use them - they didnt interest me) sites which the block wasnt catching.

Secondly: If your kid doesnt see it with you, he/she will see it with a friend. This means you might aswel tackle it head on as early as possible - that way you've at least done your best to influence them in the right way.

Thirdly: If you dont want your teenage boy going on nuddie sites - dont let them go on the net - seen as i am 18 i know this - it is NORMAL for people 14 or above.

Fourthly: Think blocking it fully will help? - no it wont - that way your kid will hate you - and they will be getting their surf time anyway as mentioned in point number 2

Fifthly: Scared of other stuff like violence? - dont be - violent kids are violent already (and may actually use the games to let out aggression) , and non-violent kids wont be changed by a game - they will see it for what it is - they are unviolent for a reason - they know what is right - and NO game tells kids its right to hit their friends - its usually - its right to hit zombies - or terrorists!
Yazz
9 years old. That's when I started. And my current state of messed-upness is juuuuust right. Cool

Trust me though, kids are curious. If there are easily accessible porn sites, they will find them eventually. Normally, kids at the age of 9 will feel embarrassed by the sites, so they'll stay away from them for a while by themselves. Also, with the adult content floating around today, you're LUCKY if you can find anything softcore. Everything is so hardcore and crazy now. Not like the good old days in 1998...

Hah, good old days... anyways, What's wrong with desensitizing children to violence and porn at a young age? It's not wrong for us when we're adults, but why? *shrug* it's just drilled into us, that's why. We've become weaklings in every respect possible. Mentally, physically, socially, environmentally. We've protected ourselves and our children for so long, and what good has come from it? Have you seen the rate of homocides and psychopaths? It's only going up as we become more protective.

BEAT YOUR CHILDREN IF YOU LOVE THEM.

Naww, I'm kidding. But smack 'em if they give you shit.
Arnie
hunnyhiteshseth wrote:
Arnie wrote:
And don't give them acces when you're not around. Always keep an eye on your children when they're surfing the Internet.


Come on, they are children & not some criminals that you have to watch them regularly.
I was talking about young children, as you see in the next line of that post. And you also watch your younger children when they're playing on the street, right? According to your reasoning, you'd have to let a child loose as soon as it doesn't need you to feed him anymore.
sibbahz
Well, i think a child can go on the internet at a young age as long as they are monitored what they are doing. By the time they get to 14, they should be clever enough to use the internet respinsibly, and if they dont, they should just be stopped from using it.
Meggsy
I started using the internet when I was about 12 or so at school and when I was 13 we got it at home. I remember my teacher said that if something popped up that we shouldn't be looking at (ie porn) then to push back and turn the monitor off before going to them. If we did that we wouldn't get in trouble.

My parents always kept an eye on things but never installed NetNanny or anything like that. As it was mentioned before, the situation depends on trust and learning from mistakes. When my sister was about 6, she typed in jessica.com and a porn site popped up. She told my mother and as a result we made a rule "no typing in domain names unless you know what they are - ie from a TV ad". If you didn't know the domain name then to use Google.

There is an awful lot of bad content on the net, provided you don't go looking for it the risk is minimized. Make sure you have good antivirus/firewall software (kids will download all sorts of stuff) and try to make a few rules:

Use Google if you don't know the domain name
Don't download any files without asking
Chat only on programs like MSN opposed to chat rooms
Don't be afraid to ask someone older if you aren't sure

I'm sure there are other rules you could think of. But I reckon if you stick to those rules then get the child on as early as possible as it will help them with their study if they can use a computer well.
ncwdavid
Just get some child protection software and leave them off.
wowz
my son is 6 and he's been online since he was 5..
there are a lot of kid safe sites.. he actually tells me where he wants to go and i tell him how to get there (like treehouse.ca and ytv... childrens tv channels in canada..)


it's actually really easy to set up a computer so that they can only go to selected sites and run certain programs.... plus there are a million programs out there to help parents with it if you aren't computer litterate Smile


now, my son can install his own games and such (which he does without me even knowing sometimes!) so i will have to watch him when he gets a bit older and can read more... but i'm not really worried because computers are fairly simple to lock down...


but if your kids have never been online, they won't know so much about computers... you've got time to explain how to explore the net, and set up security on the computer so they can't browse to sites they shouldn't be on and can only be online for so long - always a good idea.. else they'll become addicted.. that happens to kids easily.. it's never good.
Vrythramax
@wowz

I certainly agree that there are alot of very kid safe websites out there, I have a hand in writing a couple of them, but would you allow your child unrestricted access to the internet at such an impressionable age? I still think that some sort of parental guidance, or even monitoring, is needed until a child is mature enough to handle some of the stuff that's out there now.
Arnie
That is a very good point indeed. If you really want to let your <10 children on the Internet, there's a good opportunity for special applications. For the older ones I wouldn't do it, but maybe other parents would.
snjripp
As many have said, moderation is key as is knowing your kids well enough that you know what you may need to block and what they are in to. I thinkt he key is relationship--that if the internet causes interference with a child's relationship to his friends or family, then there is something unhealthy about it that should be looked into and changed. God for what is most life-giving, which definitely includes having boundaries.
frozenhead
For as long as I realize that they can think and carry themselves in their own. Maturity is not based on what age your child is so when I see that they have a lot of knowledge about everything, maybe I let them.
ThornsOfSorrow
Kids can't be sheltered forever. As a teenager, I can attest to the fact that kids and teens alike will only be more curious about what is forbidden to them. Children who have parents who treat the internet as if it's a forbidden cursed object will be more likely to attempt to explore it on their own whenever their parents aren't looking. It's just like children of very religious parents beiing atheists due to being tired of having some religion shoved in their face all their life (not that there's anything wrong with religion), or children of very anti-alcoholic parents becoming alcoholics themselves. There are a ton of examples like this. And now to avoid further rambling, I'll sum up my point by saying that it's better to show children what is in the world at a young age. I'm not saying that they should be completely desensitized, as childhood is about innocence, but I don't think it's right to hide anything from one's children. I know that I'm not a parent, but after growing up with very open and flexible parents and, as a result, getting almost straight A's in school, avoiding drinking and drugs after an extremely brief period of experimentation, never getting arrested for anything in my life, and just generally being easy-going and well-behaved, I'd say that the way I was raised is definitely the way to go. So, in short, kids should be allowed to use the internet whenever they want, as long as their parents talk to them about the potential dangers and take steps to moderate internet use so that their curiosity is satisfied, but they are not able to completely roam free.
Pikokola
12.. I thinkis thats' good, but you'll need to give him/her some activity there... like active in a forum, game etc Razz
CyanEyed
the younger the better imo. the world is becoming mre and more computer-orientated and the sooner they get online the better because they will have a headstart. as for viewin adult content, did any of th block ever stop you, i dont think so but u turned out okay didnt you. it'll be a passing phase, it'll last for a year or so but then they'll find better stuff to do (like creating website and gettin hosted Smile)

i was unleashed onto the net when i was about 9/10.


CyanEyed

ps, sorry bout the grammer and spelling. im sitting sideways nd dont have time to get comftable
crimson_aria
Hhmm.. I thought about this before already. If I'm already a mother, I'd let my child use the computer and surf the net as soon as possible so that he'll know a lot and won't be left behind. But I'd teach him the basics and the stuffs he/she needs to know first. I'll guide him/her in surfing the net but I'll let him/her learn on his own too.
siruhan
Internet has changed a lot compared to when we were children today itnternet is full of pornogaphic material be it any site Its hard to say what age should you loose the child on the net, whatever you do if your child is going to know about it through their friends classmates etc.. I would say 15 years would be ok..but again it depends on cultural and other factors
a.Bird
I'm no parent but I can image this is the same just about anything else you may introduce to your child at an impressionable age. He or she could watch the wrong tv show, view the wrong website, see the wrong part of town, have every toy he or she could ever want, etc., and have a skewed perception of life from then on. However, if you guide your child through these circumstances with proper supervision and a strong, educational influence of your own things shouldn't get out of hand. YOU are the one raising this very young humanbeing, not television companies, porn industries or videogame producers. All it takes is responsibility and some common sense. Thanks mom and dad, I love you more than the sun.
darrenpaul
I think that you should allow them access to work on thier on from about 5, but...install safety protection and continue to monitor what websites they visit.

Once they hit the age of 14, I think you should give them pretty much free access, apart from the sick things that appear on the net, I really don't think you need to worry about "porn" sites, as I really think they will see them anyway, whether it be at home, reading a magazine or watching a blockbuster film. Sex and nudity is all around us, so I honestly think that from the age of 14-15 etc, if they want to have a look at those types of site, I think stopping them or confronting them will only both embarrass them and somewhat stunt their growth if you try and remove whats only natural and going to be seen and talked about among thier friends anyway. I really feel however you should not intervene until it gets dangerous, I mean their is more problems and dangers with chat sites then their ever will be with taking a quick look at some soft pron site. Chat sites, breed dangerous people, so that's the only thing will I feel you should always monitor. Just my two cents
Annush_K
I'd say it all depends on the child. Some kids I know started using Internet in very early ages and don't seem to be influenced badly xD
There isn't anything that can really do harm to a kid, despite the light from the monitor. So I'd just advise controlling the time they spend with the computer to prevent problems with eyes and also addiction. Addiction to Internet is really hard to overcome, I've suffered it myself.
You should also pay attention to teens, becuase sometimes they tend to leave their problems behind and blankly stare at the screen insead. Or they may find so many good friends online that they just can't make ones IRL. This is danerous for their sociability, really.
Vrythramax
Annush_K wrote:
I'd say it all depends on the child. Some kids I know started using Internet in very early ages and don't seem to be influenced badly xD
There isn't anything that can really do harm to a kid, despite the light from the monitor. So I'd just advise controlling the time they spend with the computer to prevent problems with eyes and also addiction. Addiction to Internet is really hard to overcome, I've suffered it myself.
You should also pay attention to teens, becuase sometimes they tend to leave their problems behind and blankly stare at the screen insead. Or they may find so many good friends online that they just can't make ones IRL. This is danerous for their sociability, really.


Oh really? You think the flooding a child in thier learning years with images of sex and the like, or exposing them to a chatroom where predators lurk....and lie about everything, is actually beneficial? Would you want your son or daughter watching porn with streaming audio @ DSL speed? I would think that this kind of exposure would at the very least make them more willing to do the same, as it was ok to watch others do it cuz Mommy and Daddy said it was ok.

Forget what you TELL them...they believe what they can SEE.
rhathar
Censoring your children is removing their abilities to make good judgements. Trust them, talk with them, and if need be, spy on them. Wink

Also, things like 'parental blocks' are ridiculously easy to get around. For one thing, most blocks have websites that tell you the override code incase the parent forgets. Or you can use a proxy to get around siteblockers.

And believe me, kids will find out how to do it. And then they'll be paranoid of you, and make sure they delete their cookies, temporary internet files and remove proxies when they're done so you won't know.
Vrythramax
I am rather taxed on this one...I don't want my kids to see some stuff, but I would be proud as hell if they found a way around the blocks. Confused

It really seems like there is no clear answer, children should be watched when on the 'Net, but the actual age for free run is certainly up to the parents, and the maturity of the child.
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