Students can and should take control of their social media accounts. Following are suggestions for general preferences and privacy settings that can be used on each of the common social media platforms. RMA does not encourage or directly support the use of these platforms, rather, wants students to be safe online and make proactive choices, should families decide that social media use is acceptable.
PARENTS, if you are looking for a great resource on students' online use, reviews of apps, parental control options, as well as video game, book, and movie reviews, commonsensemedia.org is a very valuable website to visit. More helpful links for parents can be found here.
STUDENTS, what is in your circle of control when it comes to social media platforms?
Visit the links below for more information on how to better protect yourself and your accounts online. Clickable links are bold and in color.
INSTAGRAM (& FACEBOOK)
- You can use Instagram's Restrict tool to discreetly protect your account without that person being notified (that’s a biggie!)
- You can moderate comments on your own posts–which means that people’s comments won’t immediately be seen until YOU review and approve them first.
- You can modify your settings so that only people you follow can send you a direct message.
- Instagram will send you a notification if its filters identify that you are about to post something that might cross the line, and encourages you to reconsider.
- Hidden Words on Instagram helps filter out comments and message requests that don’t technically go against the Community Guidelines but may be considered inappropriate or offensive. You can also create your own custom word list.
- You can restrict who comments on your videos to “no one”, “just friends” or “everyone” (for those aged under 16, it is set to “just friends”--but if you LIED about your age, you have to change this setting). That’s a whole other story–lying about your age online.
- You can filter all comments or those with specific keywords that you choose.
- You can delete or report multiple comments at once, and you can block accounts that post bullying or other negative comments in bulk too, up to 100 at a time.
- A comment prompt asks people to reconsider posting a comment that may be inappropriate or unkind, reminding them of TikTok’s Community Guidelines and allowing them to edit their comments before sharing.
- You can always report abuse on Snapchat, including harassment, bullying, or any other safety concern. If you ever need to report something, just press and hold on whatever Snap you're viewing, and then tap the 'Report Snap' button to reach out to us. If someone is making you uncomfortable, you can also block that Snapchatter and leave any group chat.
- Change Who Can View Your Story: The default privacy setting is that only Snapchatters you’ve added can view your Story. The privacy settings you have when you send a Snap to your Story will remain for that Snap, even if you change the settings later.
- Don’t Forget About Screenshots: Snaps are designed to delete by default, but people that you send Snaps to can still take a screenshot or take a picture of the Snap with another device, so REMEMBER THAT before you share!
- Snapchat is partnered with the Crisis Text Line to provide additional support and resources to Snapchatters in the US. You can text the word "HOME" to 741741 to chat with a trained crisis counselor at Crisis Text Line. This service is free and available 24/7!
- Chat filters: Roblox automatically filters all chats to help prevent inappropriate content and personally identifiable information from being displayed. Over 400 actual, live moderators help to review content that gets flagged.
- Parents can set PINs. This is to protect you from sometimes making the wrong choices.
- Privacy: From the settings menu, choose who can message and chat with you, and who can send you an invite to join them in private servers--this should NOT be an option for people you do not know IRL--EVER!
- Age verification: Guess what? You can't lie. Soon, Roblox will require you to complete an age verification tool in an attempt to help enforce the age limit. Users will have to upload a photo of their government-issued ID along with a selfie to prove that it’s actually them in the picture.
- Restricted mode: A great idea--set your account to "restricted mode" if you just want to play Roblox and not have to bother with people sending messages or requesting to chat.
- Monitoring: Know that your parents can log in to your account at any time and see nearly everything you've been doing on the app, including:
- Group chats
- Private messages
- Friends and followers
- Virtual item purchases and trade history
- Creations such as games, items, sounds, and more
- Recently played games
- So...this is a case of, don't do anything your grandma wouldn't approve of