"Sharenting": When Parents Post Too Much, Are Kids At Risk?

Jul 10, 2019

Teenagers may be faulted for sharing too much of their personal lives on social media, but in many cases, it's parents who are revealing the most about their children online.

A 2010 study finds children increasingly have a digital footprint before they're even born, with 90% of 2-year-olds having an online presence. The phenomenon has been called "sharenting" - where parents over-share pictures and extremely personal information about their children online.  

Now some researchers say sharenting is not only embarrassing for children, it can be harmful. The UK bank Barclays has forecast that by 2030, sharenting will account for 2/3 of identity fraud, costing hundreds of millions of dollars a year. The personal toll may be harder to measure. An 18-year-old woman out of Austria sued her parents for posting her baby pictures on Facebook, claiming they did so without her consent.

Joining Cincinnati Edition to discuss sharenting, when parents should set limits, and whether children have a legal right to control their digital footprint are University of Florida Levin College of Law Senior Legal Skills Professor Stacey Steinberg (@sgsteinberg); and University of Cincinnati Department of Communication Professor Nancy Jennings, Ph.D. (@jennings_nancy).

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