This week, new aunt Kim Kardashian got a very public scolding by her brother-in-law Scott Disick for posting pictures of his son, 4-month-old Mason, with Kourtney Kardashian on the web via Twitter.
While Kourtney eventually okayed the pic post, calling Kim an “incredible auntie,” this incident brings to light an issue many new parents deal with these days. How do you protect your little one’s privacy in the age of Facebook, Twitter, and streaming video? Or do you?
On the one hand, there’s the concern about pictures of your kids online being used by pedophiles or tipping off kidnappers and the like.
But then there’s the positive aspect too. Technology these days has made it easier than ever to share photos and videos — or even video chat online, as little Kavi has been doing regularly with her aunts and grandparents since she was born.
I have to say, my baby is already at 2 months old more technologically advanced than I ever will be. She’s got iChat down (she likes to drool on my Mac as she coos at my sister-in-law in California), she’s got a private web page (albeit rarely updated) for pictures and videos, and she’s been the subject of many a blog post. The thing is, so far, my husband and I have been the ones to decide what information about our little one exists on the web. But nothing ever dies on the Internet. And you can’t always control what’s out there.
Given today’s culture of mommy blogs and oversharing on Facebook, Twitter, and the like, my husband and I had this conversation in the months before Kavi was born. While we weren’t all gung-ho about it, we also didn’t necessarily want all our baby’s special moments plastered all over Facebook. And we discovered early on that we were right to be concerned — because it’s really easy these days for what you think is private to become public.
I have a huge family. When I was just four months pregnant, shortly after we told my extended clan the good news, a photo of an ultrasound photo ended up on Facebook, announcing our impending arrival to friends we hadn’t told yet. Turns out one of my cousins had taken it and included it in a public album of family pics. He also tagged me on it, which alerted me to the photo’s existence — and I got congrats from over a dozen random strangers.
So we learned a lesson early on. And when Kavi was born, we made sure to ask relatives to not publicly post pictures of the baby on their pages. But it’s hard to resist — I mean, she’s just so cute. That means I’ve posted the occasional baby pic on my page — and even here, on this site.
Which begs the question: Where do we draw the line? Are we infringing on our little one’s right to privacy? Most of our albums of Kavi are set to private, released only to a select group of family and friends. But sometimes I wonder what she’ll think when she’s old enough to Google mommy and finds my blogs about her getting her first shots and having tummy trouble. How will my little girl feel about her web presence once she’s old enough to realize it exists? Will she find it amusing or embarrassing?
Does your baby have a web presence?