We have discussed Facebook and how it relates to adoption several times on this blog. If you are interested in more information on having a healthy and ongoing relationship as a birth parent, adoptee, or adoptive parent on Facebook, we suggest you read our official Facebook recommendations or listen to the Adoption STAR Podcast on the effects of the internet and social media on adoption. Today’s post is on creating a safe Facebook page for you or your child once they are of age to have their own page. Facebook’s official stance is that no one under the age of 13 should have a Facebook page.
In order to change the privacy settings of an account you need to:
1. Click on the upside down triangle in the top right corner right next to the “Home Tab”
2. Click on the “Privacy Settings” tab from the drop-down menu
3. Scroll down on the “Privacy Settings” page and click “Edit Settings” under “How You Connect”
4. Once you select edit settings the pop up menu pictured below will appear.
You will now see different settings for security.
1. The first setting is asking who can find your (or your child’s) profile.
– Facebook gives you the options of choosing to make the profile visible to the public, to friends of your Facebook friends, or just your Facebook friends. By choosing only “friends,” you are making it difficult for the Facebook profile to be found and allowing you or your child to send their invitations to friends and family members without being found by anyone unknown.
2. Who Can Send Friend Requests:
– The second customizable option is, “who can send you a Facebook request.” If you make your or your child’s profile private to everyone but friends, it would be very difficult to receive a friend request. However you still may want to make this option “friends of friends” which means, in order to send you or your child a friend request, a person must at least know another friend first.
3. Who can send you Facebook Messages
– Facebook allows you to restrict who can send a Facebook message to you or your child. Your options are making it public for anyone to send you a Facebook message (if they can find your profile), making it so that only friends of friends can send a Facebook message (again, only if they can find the Facebook profile), or making it so that only friends can send a Facebook message.
4. Who can post on your wall
– This security option allows you to decide if you want to let Facebook friends write on your or your child’s Facebook wall. The other option is allowing just the Facebook “user” to write on his/her own wall by creating status updates.
5. Who can see wall posts by others on your wall post
– If you decide to allow people to allow friends to write on the Facebook wall, then this security option will allow you to decide who can see what friends write. Your options are making your or your child’s wall visible to the Facebook community (though only friends could write on the wall), visible to friends and friends of friends, visible to only friends, visible to only the Facebook user, or to customizable people. This last option allows you to decide who can see yours or your child’s wall among the Facebook friends.
While staying up to date on these security options is great, it’s important to always remember, and to stress to your children, that the internet is written in ink and despite your best efforts to make Facebook private, anything written has an opportunity to become public knowledge. You also want to make sure if you are allowing your younger children to have their own Facebook page, that you are friends with them so you can view their activity.
My sister and I are in our 20’s and my mom is still stalking away on our profiles, don’t be ashamed to do the same!