Do you know what apps your kids are using?

By: Alicia Turner
November 4, 2016

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- In a sea of icons, there are some we know and there are many other we don't.

"It's very frustrating to try to monitor social media," one parent says.

It's frustrating because a study done by Common Sense Media says teens spend up to nine hours a day using social media.

"[Parents] should probably know what kind of apps their kids have on their phones," Brianna Barnabee says.

Barnabee is a social media expert with RB Oppenheim Associates. She's no stranger to apps like Snapchat, where she can snap a picture and it only stays up for 24 hours.

She says beyond the filters and funny videos, there's a new wave of apps connecting users to others they've never met.

"It's so different because parents didn't have social media they could ta

Using apps like Yik Yak allows users to view anonymous comments from other users who are psychically nearby.

Another app, Whisper, isn't much different. Users can anonymously share comments and photos with anyone in the area.

Omegle promotes conversations with strangers and users can chat via text or video.

Another app, Ask.fm allows two people to anonymously communicate in question and answer style.

In Musical.ly, teens can post 15 second videos of themselves or their friends.

So what do parents need to know?

All accounts are public, so when a kid posts a video, everyone can see it and anyone can follow it.

"Kids and teens are using social media, so it's very important that parents stay in the loop," Barnabee says.

Some parents say that knowing is the first step.

"We do ask a lot of questions," one parent says.

"Our oldest daughter monitors their stuff too, so she's friends with them, she follows their friends on Instagram and she lets me know if there's people on there they shouldn't be friends with," says another parent.

Another parent says she worries about social media.

"I guess I'm just a negative Nancy when it comes to that, I probably worry more than I should," says a parent.

A worry that's felt by countless others as they try to protect their children from dangers on and off social media.



 
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