Sunday, August 6

Blogging is great. Just be smart about what you share

A new entrant teacher approached me last week about setting up a classroom blog. She recognised the potential of a blog in strengthening home –school partnerships. She was keen to keep it simple using it primarily as a tool to celebrate and share children’s works and for general communication with whanau. She asked about privacy and protection issues. I found this, list of commonsense tips for bloggers. For anyone else wanting to get started with blogging I recommend the free and easy service provided at
Safe Blogging Tips
Be as anonymous as possible. Avoid postings that could enable a stranger to locate you. That includes your last name, the name of your school, sports teams, the town you live in, and where you hang out.
Protect your info. Check to see if your service has a "friends" list that allows you to control who can visit your profile or blog. If so, allow only people you know and trust. If you don't use privacy features, anyone can see your info, including people with bad intentions.
Avoid in-person meetings. Don't get together with someone you "meet" in a profile or blog unless you are certain of their actual identity. Although it's still not risk-free, if you do meet the person, arrange the meeting in a public place and bring some friends along.
Photos: Think before posting. What's uploaded to the Net can be downloaded by anyone and passed around or posted online pretty much forever. Avoid posting photos that allow people to identify you (for example, when they're searching for your high school), especially sexually suggestive images. Before uploading a photo, think about how you'd feel if it were seen by a parent/grandparent, college admissions counselor, or future employer.
Check comments regularly. If you allow them on your profile or blog, check them often. Don't respond to mean or embarrassing comments. Delete them and, if possible, block offensive people from commenting further.
Be honest about your age. Membership rules are there to protect people. If you are too young to sign up, do not attempt to lie about your age. Talk with your parents about alternative sites that may be appropriate for you.
© 2006


Anonymous said...

Thanks for taking the time to search out this info. It gives me lots of food for thought and inspires me to have a go.

Cherrie said...

Eek, that's pretty freaky. I'm pretty sure my blog is totally 'locatable'...eek!!!!!