A mother and founder of the popular Mommy Shorts blog, Ilana Wiles is the creator of the newly viral Instagram page called “Insta2yearold – which imagines life through the eyes of her youngest daughter named Harlow.
The idea of creating a separate social media account dedicated to the toddler, who turns 2 next week, came after Harlow stole her mother's phone and somehow ended up clicking a selfie – a photo which went on to become the account’s inaugural snapshot.
Insta2yearold, as of the time of writing this post, has amassed more than 44,000 followers, making it a viral hit. Users can’t help but adore Harlow’s adventures.
However, as cute and endearing it may be, parents putting up pictures of kids on the Internet raises a lot of privacy and safety concerns.
Over the past couple of years, which have witnessed a sudden surge in social media (over)sharing, there has been a lot of discussion regarding the ethics of posting babies’ pictures online.
A recent U.S. study found that 63 percent of moms use Facebook; of these, 97 percent said they post pictures of their child, 89 percent post status updates about them and 46 percent post videos.
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A lot of online security and child psychology experts believe the stats are problematic because putting your child’s pictures on the Internet can inadvertently put them at risk.
“There are two things to be careful about,” says Victoria Nash, acting director of the Oxford Internet Institute. “One is the amount of information that you give away, which might include things like date of birth, place of birth, the child’s full name, or tagging of any photographs with a geographical location – anything that could be used by somebody who wanted to steal your child’s identity.”
“The second issue is more around consent. What type of information would children want to see about themselves online at a later date?”
Wiles’ account of her daughter’s daily routine may appear hilarious to the world now but who’s to guarantee the kid will love it once she’s old enough to understand how the cyber world works?