Keeping Safe in a Changing World

Old-Fashioned Phone Box

The world has changed, in some ways it has got bigger but yet it has got smaller.  Regardless of international time zones, communication from one country to another has never been easier yet, in contrast, these very technologies have also made our world bigger connecting us instantly to more people in more places and to an awful lot more information.  How do you see all this panoply of technology, as friend or foe?

It seems the biggest worry for most people is how to keep themselves and their families safe.  It’s no longer a question of not talking to strangers and locking the front door at night, the challenges have changed and as the first generation we don’t exactly know what the rules are.  When we were children, parents could confidently set ground rules regarding the use of the landline and when and at what age their children could go out alone.  The challenges were straightforward, understood and across entire communities parents were probably all making similar judgements, they could base it on what thousands if not millions of parents had done before, what their own parents had decided for them when they themselves had been young.   But today?  How can a parent decide solely through experience when to let their child have a mobile phone or their own email account?  Those things probably didn’t even exist until those parents were all adults!

It’s a little crazy and people seem to veer from one extreme to another, some view the Internet and associated technologies with distrust and suspicion and avoid it at all cost whilst others jump on any passing bandwagon with carefree abandon.  Personally I would advocate a more balanced approach, somewhere in the middle, my rule of thumb is if you don’t need to use it then don’t.  It may be all your friends (or your children’s) have signed up for some great new service but do you really need to use it?  Anyhow, if you give it a while, the creases will be ironed out if it’s still around and as popular which means you’ll have less headaches when you start using it yourself.

It seems that patience can indeed still be a virtue in this hectic-paced modern life of ours.  We just have to choose which bandwagons we’re prepared to ride and why.


6 thoughts on “Keeping Safe in a Changing World

Add yours

  1. I think it also depends on the makeup of your household. At our house, for instance, the kids are wired. They don’t have phones, (that ‘if you don’t need it’ thing) but Caroline got a Kindle Fire for Christmas, and she uses it both to read and play games, some with an online component. But on the flipside, I teach online, I blog, and I don’t mind them emulating my online behavior. Also, we hardly watch any TV at all, so I view this as a a substitute diversion.

    Most of my daughter’s friends are not nearly so wired as she is, or haven’t been until recently, so she’s been the one at school teaching classmates how to sign up for online games, and her teacher was really surprised to hear her lecturing a friend “never have a chat with somebody you don’t know in real life.”. (Which means the lessons are sticking, yay!)

    1. But clearly you aren’t just letting them roam free on their connections as Caroline’s comment shows! I think also that you are in a fortunate position to set an example, I know too many households where it’s the children showing the parents. :)

      1. Hilarious story along those lines. Mom got my niece a Kindle. (My niece lives with, and has been adopted by my Mom). Mom has no clue how to operate the thing. So she handed it to Kay and went about her life. I met up with them in July of last year, picked up the machine, and holy GOD there was a TON of PORN on it. Heavy porn. And Kay is not curious enough about that stuff to have been the source of it. I believe – and internet searching has convinced me I’m right – that the Amazon Prime membership that came with the machine caused automatic downloads, and of course, MOm never set her “safe filter” (wouldn’t know what one was and might, in fact, try to put it in the fishtank should she find it.) Kay only games on the thing so she hadn’t (THANK GOD) noticed it. (She refused to touch it until Scott and I deleted it.) Anyway, Mom needed to get a five hundred dollar refund from AMazon. (And that’s a shitton of porn). So she had to go through customer service, seven layers, explaining that the child had NOT downloaded it etc. (She also cancelled the “prime” membership.) Anyway, their solution (because they clearly didn’t believe her) was to tell her to setup the parental controls. But the more they explained, the less Mom understood, until the crowning moment when she just handed the machine to Kaylee to setup the parental controls!!! I am sure the customer service person on the other end of the line was DYING. On the other hand, Kay taught Caroline and I how to setup the controls and was the one who taught Caroline how NOT to buy things that cost real world money in app games.

  2. With two granddaughters, one teen and one adolescent, this is the most difficult and nerve-wracking question my daughter and SIL face, maybe with the exception of driving.

I'd love to know what you think, concrit is especially welcomed on fiction pieces. Thank you.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: