Everyone can see each other - digitally speaking.

In addition to the latest PEW Research on Teens, Social Media and Technology 2015, that shared statistics that our teens are connected to social media frequently – and up to 24% said it is constantly, it was refreshing to see that at least 60% of parents are adapting and monitoring their teens social media behavior according to the latest PEW survey.

It is also nice to see that on Facebook, 83% of them are friends with their teenagers and 33% follow each other on Twitter.

Keep in mind, parents are supposed to be the role models for their children – including their teenagers.

I wrote last summer about a mother that used Facebook as a venting machine, although her children were grown, we need to keep in mind that social media today is more than a trend – it can literally dictate your future – no matter how old you are.  From potential college admissions to job interviews to online dating.  People will use the Internet to find out more about you at some point.

Never underestimate the influence of the Internet and social media.  

I was thrilled to see in this recent study by PEW, that teens are still very much concerned about their online reputation.

According to the study:

Teens are well aware of their online reputations, and they actively curate their content and appearance on social media, according to our 2013 report. For example, 59% of teenage social media users have deleted or edited something that they posted; 53% have deleted comments from others; and 45% have removed their name from photos.

Since we know the teenagers are aware of the importance of their digital footprint, how are their parents behaving online?

Parents need to think twice before oversharing or what has been labeled sharenting photos especially if they could cause your teen embarrassment or humiliation.  We often tell our children that what we discuss at home is for family only – however soon we can see it on the gossip thread of our parent’s social media sites – as they converse with their friends – for their opinions.

Is that wrong?  Yes and no.  We all need support from friends, but in today’s virtual world, it’s not for the World Wide Web, learn how to private message or simply use the phone.  Your kids are watching you and your keystrokes.  If you breach the golden rules of home boundaries, it won’t be long before they are doing the same thing.

Did you recently have a dispute with a friend, even went so far to unfriend her/him?  Now you are dissing them online?  Your kids are watching.  No one is immune to online harassment at any age – and we all need to take part in putting an end to it.

Yes, parents are monitoring teens behavior – but remember it is a two way street.  Parents are statistically a primary influence in a child’s life.  Don’t give them negative social behavior habits to follow.

Be a positive role model both offline and online.