Book Review: Cybtertraps for the Young, by Frederick Lane

cyber traps for young book

by Beckie Mostello

in Tech Tips for the Family

Do you find that your children are far more “tech-savvy” than yourself? Wondering what they are really up to on their phones, laptops, and tablets? Need tips to “parent” your child’s online lives? The book, Cybertraps for the Young can help.

I recently read the book Cybertraps for the Young, by Frederick Lane.  The book informs parents, teachers and caretakers about the consequences of irresponsible “technology”  behavior as well as how to prevent online “traps” such as cyberbullying, hacking, sexting, intellectual fraud, electronic defamation, internet addictions, identity theft and pornography.

Cybertraps for the Young, is divided into 3 Parts. Part One gives an overview on how electronic devices work. Part Two of the book describes the Cybertraps that children can encounter while using their electronic devices.  Part Three discusses solutions- how parents can educate themselves and their children to prevent irresponsible online behavior.

I consider myself pretty technically savvy, however, when I read this book, I was inundated with the beneficial information about children/teens and technology. I found Part Three of the book, “The Solutions” most beneficial. In the Third Section, Lane gives practical “hands-on” ideas which families can implement immediately. A few of the ideas that stood out to me include,

  • Don’t let computers and other technology out of common spaces in your house
  • Create a central charging area for all devices
  • Electronic devices should be turned off at the same time everyday to allow for rest and placed in the central charging area or in a parent’s bedroom if the teen has a texting problem (keeping teens from texting throughout the night)

Another suggestion author Frederick Lane makes, is for parents to require full friend status on all social networks. He makes the point that online supervision is not online stalking. With all due respect, I am not so sure if I agree with him on this point. I think this is a suggestion I would need to make if it came to the point where I thought my children were doing something very wrong. I do believe in having ongoing conversations with my children about their friends and their online presence works best for my family.

As much as we can be annoyed that our children are using technology which was not a part of our “growing up”, we need to accept that our children are growing up in a much different world. Educating and informing ourselves can help us adapt to the new era in which we are raising children .

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