Facebook - to actively consider reporting underage users?

(90 Posts)
grumpypants Fri 02-Apr-10 09:58:42

because i am irritated by the persistent attempts of friends' children (aged 11 and younger) to befriend me. I keep ignoring it, they keep trying. I don't talk to them about 'me' in real life; why wd i do so on the internet? Then, yesterday i found you can report them to facebook and get their accounts removed. I am v tempted...

Duritzfan Fri 02-Apr-10 10:10:12

Lol.. I know what you mean ...I have been "requested " by a few of my children's friends and have had to email their mums and tell them that I wont be accepting..

Just block them - then they cant find you in the first place smile

runnybottom Fri 02-Apr-10 10:13:02

I would. If their parents aren't sensible enough to keep them safe, someone else might as well.

Saltire Fri 02-Apr-10 10:20:15

If I knew how to report them I would, my mad cow ex neighbours 6 year old son is on there, even looking at his profile picture you cans ee he's under age

grumpypants Fri 02-Apr-10 10:22:02

i did explain to one mum, but she seemed to see it as 'my problem'. i might block them, but its v tempting to just get rid of the accounts and then dd (11) won't be able to say but so ans so has one...grin

grumpypants Fri 02-Apr-10 10:28:04

saltire according to facebook, this is the form - http://www.facebook.com/help/contact.php.?show_form=underage
but that's copied from an article about it.

lincstash Fri 02-Apr-10 10:38:37

Why does it bother you? Ignore them. What harm do the requests actually cause you? Its not like there knocking on your door every evening or sending you letters. Its just electronic spam. Why does it get to you? Are you not bigger than that ?

grumpypants Fri 02-Apr-10 10:41:49

good question, i think that part of me is a very straight laced play by the rules type if i'm honest, and it really irritates me 1) that they are on there and 2) that they wd think i wanted to have them privy to my grown uo chats/ friends/ relationships.

meltedchocolate Fri 02-Apr-10 11:08:59

I agree it can be annoying and also am a play by the rules type person (why do parents think it is ok to teach a child that breaking set rules is ok?!) BUT I wouldn't report them. If their parents let them then it isn't my place to 'sort' it and i just dont accept the invites. Facebook isnt the place for young children IMO but if they are there i wont be 'grassing' on anyone unless they are causing serious trouble.

usualsuspect Fri 02-Apr-10 11:11:02

Just block them? I wouldn't report them ..some children just like to play the games on there

mountainmonkey Fri 02-Apr-10 11:25:33

I have my 10yo nephew as a facebook friend- he only has school friends and family on his friends list and his parents monitor him pretty closely, though to be honest I'm surprised they allowed it.

Some of his school friends who I've never met tried to befriend me -I declined just on principle because I don't add anybody that I haven't met in RL and thought it was quite shocking and potentially dangerous that a child would send friend requests to adults that they don't know.

profscooter Fri 02-Apr-10 11:26:43

This is really tough, I've been very tight on what our kids can do on the internet but the problem here is partly the schools I think. Our 11 year old comes home and pretty much all of his same-age friends are on Facebook playing Farmville and such like, it's an unstoppable train, to exclude them would potentially cause them to be seen as outsiders and unable to share in playground chat about the games. I have drawn the line at our 9 yr old daughter though as she's a bit too young to really understand how it all works properly and she doesn't have the same peer pressure in her class in any case. I have mentioned the other kids' apparent 15+ etc. computer game playing at parents evenings, and don't get me wrong, it's a good school, but I'm not sure how much effort is put into educating kids (and their parents) about such things. Facebook really need to invent a "Facebook Lite" version for under 13s which can be upgraded to a full account later on.

Merrylegs Fri 02-Apr-10 11:31:46

We had a letter home from DD's school yesterday reminding us that Facebook has a lower age limit of 13 and all pupils under that age must disable their facebook accounts immediately. I wonder if they will check?

grumpypants Fri 02-Apr-10 11:37:41

we had the same sort of letter recently. maybe the school should just report the underage users? not sure how that would work. tbh i think the internet is quite scary - a few clicks can take you into dodgy territory and i don't want my 11 y/o making herself accessible on it at the moment.

roisin Fri 02-Apr-10 12:05:42

I would deffo report them. I've told my boys they can't have accounts until they're 13, at that time they must have me as a friend, and they must have full privacy settings.

They say all their friends are on FB, but I've never found any of their mates on there. So if they are, they're not using their real names.

differentnameforthis Fri 02-Apr-10 12:09:19

I have done. Someone I know had her kids on there, 5 & 7! Trouble is, she just re registered them with a different email addy!

ra29needsabettername Fri 02-Apr-10 12:11:55

yes quick get the children off the computer. facebook eats children.

BritFish Fri 02-Apr-10 12:52:50

i was lucky enough that facebook wasnt popular among their friends until my DD's were both overage anyway.

i think you should report them. there's all this fuss about children being unsafe on social networking sites, so sites create aage limits to try and prevent young naive kids getting on them, but parents let their kids anyway!
i would never have let mine. its like having a mobile phone. you dont NEED to have all these electronic devices as such a young child. mine had them when they went to secondary school because they were walking to and from school on their own.
id prefer my children to make face-to-face connections with people before they need to use a screen.
[and im an internet addict, i love computers and all that is digital]

parents complain that companies arent doing enough blah blah. forgetting that in their own homes, THEY control the media input.
its called turning the fudging thing off.

BelleDeChocolateFluffyBunny Fri 02-Apr-10 12:59:37

My 11 year old has an account, it's just for his family though (aunts/uncle/granny) and a couple of his friends. I wouldn't allow him to send friend requests to my friends, I monitor who is on his account, he doesn't have any personal info, there's not even a picture of him on there. He just plays farmville.

mitochondria Fri 02-Apr-10 13:45:39

I don't understand why people are on Facebook with their real names, to be honest. That way anyone can find you. Children's friends, your boss, your irritating family members that you'd rather didn't know what you were up to.....

Although I might just be saying that because I'm a teacher - as none of my students can find me I won't have to offend them by turning them down!

I have befriended a few of my friend's children. Its up to their parents not up to me. I wouldn't hurt their feelings by ignoring them. I actually thought it was very sweet that they wanted me to be honest.

Eurostar Fri 02-Apr-10 14:06:21

mitochondria - Why real names? I haven't looked at the t&c's of FB for a while but when last I looked it was actually a requirement to have your real name and you could be reported and banned for not doing so. Different from Myspace and other networking sites which had screen names. FB started as networking for people within their college alumni groups.

I hate the way FB tries to put public info out there and forces you to constantly close your pages down rather than having full security settings as basic and then you change them as you want.

Having locked down all my security settings I joined a new network and then found that FB had automatically opened up my info to the the whole network. Have also noticed that they have changed the search view again so that, when a non-friend looks at your profile, the pages that you are a fan of are shown and cannot be hidden.

I wish FB wasn't such a convenient way of staying in touch with friends from all over the world as it feels mostly like another chore to constantly check that they haven't played with privacy settings.

I do feel that FB is trying to keep info open as possible to appeal to advertisers and doesn't care really at all about the security of its users. They know it's full of underage kids too and I would consider reporting underage users, I've seen underage users being targetted by randoms.

I also (and this is going to annoy lots here probably) think parents are stupid and naive to put their DCs' pictures up as their profile pictures or put up family shots as profile pictures. Do people realise that absolutely any person, registered or not can copy that photo and keep it? It's like parents are invading their own childrens' privacy. It would also help weed out underage users if parents didn't confuse matters by using DC pictures on their profile.

I just changed my D.O.B. to 1920 to see what that does to the targetted advertisinggrin

lincstash Fri 02-Apr-10 14:11:23

theres a huge court battle about to take place with the EU.

When you close your account with FB, you would imagine they delete all your info?

No they dont. They never delete it. Once you pasted stuff to them, actually getting them to destroy it is along uphill battle. You can close your account and you will still be able to find stuff about yourself months later.

This amounts to an infringement of the Data Protection Act, and theres going to be a test case to force FB to actually start destroying data in closed accounts.

MrsStig Fri 02-Apr-10 14:21:33

But, mitochondria tht is exactly why I am on FB!

Annoying relatives pop round and see me in RL, so it can't be any owrse on FB. And obviously, I know anything I put on there can be googled etc...I guess I have a boring life, though!

salbysea Fri 02-Apr-10 14:48:21

mitochondria, I use FB to keep in touch with people from RL as my friends and family are all over the world, what would be the point of NOT using my real name?

OP its tricky, if it was a close friend I might be tempted to add their child (but hide most of my profile from them) to keep an eye on their account for them IYKWIM even though I think it is completely unacceptable to allow your child to have a FB page underage, its teaching them that its fine to break societies rules and ignore advice of adults like teachers. You have to LIE to sign up an under age child. But I do see the point that its better for them to have an account that you know about than a secret one set up at a friend's house that you cant monitor - however that only excuses the parents of 9/10/11/12 year olds IMO, NOT the parents of the 5/6 years olds I've seen on there

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