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Dropping F-Bombs on Facebook: NSF Kids?

dirty-facebookI was pissed, and I needed to let out steam. So I left it in my Facebook status: a big ol’ F-bomb.

And now I’ve got a situation of a possible “un-friending,” from an angry grandmother who thinks the F-word doesn’t belong on Facebook.

WTF?

My original message, or status report, was put up Thursday. It said “To the f—wad who was setting off fireworks at 11:30 last night [that would have been Wednesday night] BUY A CALENDAR.”

Pretty clear it was a one-off pissy moment, I thought. I don’t actually use the F-word very often, even less now that I have a four-year-old. It’s one of the reasons I turn to the likes of Facebook as an adult – it’s one place I can let off steam in a way I can’t in polite conversation or in my job as a writer.

But along with the several people who “liked” my status and the list of re-affirming comments from parents equally annoyed by fireworks being shot off while their babies are sound asleep came this one, from a woman I like (hence her presence on my “friends” list), who happens to have grandchildren: “Hey Jeanne, I have children reading my pages sometimes. Would appreciate it if the language was clean. Thanks so much.”

It was followed by a friend who took it as a joke . . . and left a string of expletives, only to have yet another response by said grandmother, proving it wasn’t a joke at all”

“What is up with you people and the language? you’re forcing me to hide you so that my nieces and grandchildren don’t see this language. Good grief !!!! Totally unnecessary.”

OK, I think I’ve said already that I actually like this woman. But I was betwixt and between on this one. I don’t like to anger a friend, but Facebook is not a safe haven for kids.

Have you looked at the options on Super Poke alone? You can “drunk dial” someone, “spank” them and “trout slap” a friend. If you want to protect your kids from any of the above, keep them off Facebook.

Now let’s take a look at the quizzes . . . which are to Facebook what tantrums are to toddlers – totally ubiqutious. One friend took a Billy Mays quiz which said “YOU shut your whore mouth while Billy Mays is talking.” Another took “which position are you” just yesterday, resulting in the words “doggy style” with graphic illustrations of said position. If you want to protect your kids from that, keep them off Facebook.

And should we debate the pictures on Facebook? Many of which I’ve seen on teenagers’ pages? A la the teenage boy brandishing a beer, the teenage girl driving while her teenage friends in the back of grandpa’s Escalade are holding high bottles of alcohol (and I can only pray the driver was not partaking)? Or the adult drunk male wearing his daughter’s flamingo sunglasses, sticking out his tongue and flashing his nipple? The adult woman licking a guy’s ear while grinding on him? If you want to protect your kids from any of that, keep them off Facebook!

I wouldn’t do any of the above in front of a kid (and some of it I wouldn’t do at all – hello drunk driving!). But there’s a reason I said “f—wad” on Facebook rather than screaming it from my back porch. One very big reason is my four-year-old. Another is the nature of Facebook – I wonder if the reason alcohol plays so heavily on the site might not be because the two have one major thing in common: they both lower your inhibitions.

It’s why Facebook just isn’t a place for kids. And for parents/grandparents who allow their kids on Facebook, it’s up to them to ensure their kids are friends only with people who are aware of the constraints of being friends with kids. I have two teenagers as “friends,” on my site: the little boy I babysat when he was a toddler (now a senior in high school) and the younger sister of a guy I graduated from high school with. The rest of my “friends” are eighteen and older, and there’s a reason for that.

Because Facebook isn’t a place I go to hang out with my kid (my aunt, however, well that’s a different story – I friended HER). And if you don’t think your kids should see what’s on my Facebook page, please keep them off of it.

Do you think people should be wary of your kid on THEIR Facebook pages?

Image: Post Google

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