MySpace explained

Q: My teenage daughter asked me if she could have her own MySpace account. I don’t know a lot about MySpace except for what I’ve heard about in the news. Is it safe?

MySpaceA: MySpace is what is referred to as a social networking web site and is very popular among teenagers. People create their own MySpace pages which usually include a photo of themselves along with a profile giving out information such as what city they live in, what school they attend or what their favorite movie is.

Once someone has his or her MySpace page set up, he or she can begin writing anything their heart desires on the page. much like a daily journal or diary. Other people can read their writings, referred to as posts, and leave comments on those posts.

The burning question, however, as you asked, is whether or not MySpace is safe.

The answer is both yes and no. MySpace can be very safe if you make sure your daughter takes precautions to keep it safe. This means not including any information that would be too personal for the entire world to see such as a home address, details of when and where she will be on any given night, etc.

On the other hand, MySpace can be very dangerous as it has unfortunately become very popular for people to pose as someone else. for example a grown man posing as a teenage boy. just to get involved in another person’s MySpace.

The rule people should follow is to not write anything they wouldn’t want the entire world to read.

Another measure your daughter could take is to make her MySpace page restricted or private. MySpace offers these options which restricts anyone from viewing the page unless your daughter has explicitly allowed that person to view the page.

This post was originally broadcast Friday, January 26, 2007 on “Tech Talk with Noobie”, a weekly radio show on WCBK 102.3 FM in Martinsville, Indiana. Tech Talk with Noobie airs every Friday at 11:30 a.m. If you have a question you would like Noobie to answer on the air, simply e-mail your question to [email protected].