September 11th, 2019

Sometimes you don’t want anyone to know what you’re looking at on the Internet. No need to justify or defend that position; you just want to be anonymous. That’s what the private browsing, or incognito mode, on your browser is for, right? Private is not Anonymous Browsing in a “private” setting will block cookies, prevent any web addresses from auto-filling your address bar and keep no record of your history…. Continue reading >

August 27th, 2019

Money can’t buy you love, but it can buy you friends. Likes, comments, followers and friends are all for sale on the Internet. Want 5,000 “real Instagram likes” on a recent post? That’ll be $28, please. Need to increase your reach on Twitter by adding 10,000 followers? Then the “Premium Package” is for you. It’s $80 and, the vendor vows, “100% safe.” Why would anyone pay to increase their friends-and-followers tally? What would be… Continue reading >

July 27th, 2019

Your kids know what TikTok is, and so do roughly 500 million monthly users. You should, too. TikTok is a social media app used to make and easily share short videos. It’s like Vine, if you recall that early-days video app, but much more popular. It’s fun, engaging, and easy to use, and therein lies the problem: millions of quick, zany videos at your fingertips, waiting to eat up hours of your day and… Continue reading >

July 24th, 2019

It may seem ridiculous to you, but Instagram Influencer is a real job. And it can be wildly lucrative: a million bucks per post. Influencers play an increasingly important role in the business and commercial worlds, which means it’s increasingly important for parents to understand what they are. These are the people who will be in front of your kids on social media in the future, selling… Continue reading >

May 22nd, 2019

A generation ago, some of us used to worry about our private conversations being overheard. Others, often derided as paranoid, suspected the government of eavesdropping on everything we say. The rapid technological advances of today make those concerns seem quaint. The wired world has brought the “eavesdroppers” into the home and made them part of the family. These digital assistants answer our questions, play music we like, place phone calls for us, tell us… Continue reading >

May 16th, 2019

A prompt to restart your computer or phone for a software update usually leads to a groan and a vow to do it later. And then later comes and you…vow to do it later, again. Here’s a tip: Do it now, not later. The reason for updates (yes, they’re tedious) has a lot to do with the current state of digital defenses and making sure all users and their… Continue reading >

April 9th, 2019

And that’s not a good thing. If your children own or are allowed to use a smartphone, chances are good that they have installed the Snapchat app to communicate with their friends. Indeed, Snapchat is among the top five social media apps used by children, according to a report from ABC. Often, it’s merely a fun diversion. But sometimes, there are risks. Continue reading >

March 26th, 2019

When the Internet was newer, people used to joke about the most serious users being able to browse so long that some day they would actually reach the end. It wasn’t actually possible then, and it’s way less possible now. There are more pages, and the scrolling is endless. By design. The term is Infinite Scroll, which describes a page-design technique and a Javascript tool that allows a site to keep feeding and… Continue reading >

March 18th, 2019

Lexie Kite, PhD, explains in detail the pitfalls of letting girls on Instagram. While this article on BeautyRedefined.org focuses on middle school and high school aged girls, it also demonstrates how it can be bad for boys as well. The inherent message in Instagram is that your value resides in your appearance. For developing brains who are creating their identities, this… Continue reading >

March 20th, 2019

This One Zero article on Medium explores a new math game, Prodigy, that bills itself as both an education and fun. The creators see themselves as competing with Fortnite, and teachers and parents like that it teaches the children math. Gamifying education isn’t a new idea, think Oregon Trail or Carmen Sandiego, but having hidden purchases available is. Jeff Wise explores this idea in his article, “ Continue reading >
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