Sharenthood: Why We Should Think Before We Talk about Our Kids Online Book Summary

Sharenthood: Why We Should Think Before We Talk about Our Kids Online Book Summary


Have you ever stopped to consider the implications of sharing your child’s photos or personal moments on social media? In the age of digital oversharing, this question is more pertinent than ever. Leah Plunkett’s book “Sharenthood: Why We Should Think Before We Talk about Our Kids Online” dives into this issue, examining the potential effects of our online habits on our children’s present and future lives. Let’s delve into a more detailed summary of the book…

Digital Sharenthood: Are We Risking Our Children’s Future by Sharing Their Lives Online?

In today’s digital age, it’s not uncommon to see parents sharing details of their children’s lives on social media platforms. A funny anecdote, a milestone, or a memorable event, the digital realm is teeming with snippets of children’s lives, shared by their parents. The book “Sharenthood: Why We Should Think Before We Talk about Our Kids Online,” delves into the implications of this widespread digital behaviour known as ‘sharenting.’
Sharenting, as the term suggests, is a portmanteau of ‘sharing’ and ‘parenting.’ It has become a standard part of many parents’ daily lives, as they celebrate their children’s accomplishments, share their cute moments, or even vent their frustrations and seek advice on parenting challenges. However, the book calls for a careful consideration of the potential implications of such digital sharenthood.
The Internet, a seemingly vast, endless space, is not as forgiving as one might think. Once shared, the information about our children becomes a part of their digital footprint. This footprint could potentially impact their future, affecting their opportunities and shaping the way they are perceived by others. The book raises the question: are we, as parents, setting up our children’s future for success or potential harm by our sharing habits?
The book also sheds light on the potential threats to a child’s safety and privacy. With cyber threats on the rise, the information shared about a child could potentially be misused by ill-intentioned individuals or entities. This aspect calls for a thoughtful and responsible approach to sharenting, considering not only the immediate joy of sharing but also the potential long-term consequences.
Furthermore, it emphasizes the need for digital literacy. Parents need to understand how to use digital tools and settings more securely to protect their children’s online presence. This digital literacy extends to children as well, who need to be taught about the risks and responsibilities of the digital world from a young age.
The book advocates for a reconsideration of privacy laws and regulations, especially concerning children. It suggests that companies should improve their practices and policies regarding privacy, underlining the crucial role that institutions play in ensuring safer digital spaces.
Lastly, the book ends with a call to parents to think carefully before sharing anything related to their children online. It promotes the importance of consciousness and improved digital practices to protect children and respect their privacy.
“Sharenthood: Why We Should Think Before We Talk about Our Kids Online,” encourages a dialogue about the broader implications of our digital habits. As parents, it’s not just about what we share but how, where, when, and why we share it that counts. The book challenges us to think critically about our roles in our children’s digital lives, with their future well-being at stake.

Commercial Exploitation of Children’s Data: Are We Unwittingly Facilitating It Through Sharenting?

“Sharenthood: Why We Should Think Before We Talk about Our Kids Online” has raised critical discussions around a phenomenon that has become a staple of modern parenting. This captivating book centers on ‘sharenting,’ a term coined to encapsulate the act of parents sharing their children’s pictures, achievements, and life events on various digital platforms. While the joys and trials of parenthood are celebrated and shared, the book warns of an undercurrent issue that often goes overlooked – the commercial exploitation of children’s data.
The digital footprint starts accumulating from the moment a child’s photo, video, or information is shared online. Every ‘like,’ ‘share,’ or ‘comment’ increases the visibility and accessibility of that data. This data, unfortunately, isn’t confined to being a source of entertainment or information for family, friends, or other virtual acquaintances. Instead, it often lands in the vast, murky pool of Big Data, which companies exploit for commercial purposes.
Our digital age is characterized by the vast exchange of information, much of which is leveraged for targeted advertising and marketing strategies. Every byte of data is a valuable asset, often used to draw detailed profiles of individuals, their preferences, habits, and behaviors. In this context, the book highlights how children’s data, shared abundantly by parents, becomes an integral part of this digital data ecosystem.
Parents might be sharing their child’s first day at school, a lost tooth, or the favorite toy, seemingly innocent and joyful moments. Yet, without realizing it, they’re also supplying marketers and advertisers with data about the child’s age, location, daily routines, and more. This can be exploited for creating targeted ads, affecting not only the child’s current digital experience but potentially influencing their behaviors, choices, and future consumer habits.
The book doesn’t solely emphasize the problem but offers insights on the necessary steps to navigate this challenge. It underscores the need for improved digital literacy among parents, urging them to understand the digital ecosystems better. Learning to adjust privacy settings, understanding the terms and conditions of social platforms, and being more selective with the shared content can significantly minimize data vulnerability.
Moreover, it advocates for stricter privacy laws and more robust and ethical data practices from companies. Businesses need to consider the implications of their data collection, particularly concerning children. Data privacy should not merely be a supplementary feature, but a fundamental aspect of any digital platform or service.
“Sharenthood” ends with a potent message: parents need to pause and think before they click the ‘share’ button. While the digital world offers unparalleled connectivity, it also carries unique risks, particularly for the youngest members of our society. The book acts as a crucial reminder of the responsibility we bear in shaping our children’s digital environment, and ultimately, their future.

Our Facebook Page – Book Summary

Online Safety and Privacy for Children: How Much Are We Compromising Through Sharenting?

“Sharenthood: Why We Should Think Before We Talk about Our Kids Online” paints an eye-opening picture of the potential perils that are woven into the fabric of today’s digital age. Primarily, it spotlights ‘sharenting,’ an increasingly common practice where parents share their children’s photos, accomplishments, and life events on various online platforms. While sharing such moments can create a sense of community among family and friends, this book poses a critical question: At what cost does this sharing come to our children’s online safety and privacy?
Sharenting, in essence, is a double-edged sword. On one side, it allows parents to share the joys and challenges of raising children with a broader community. On the flip side, every image, video, or detail shared contributes to the child’s digital footprint, which begins to accumulate from the moment the first post goes live. These digital footprints carry the potential to expose children to a variety of risks and threats, one of them being breaches to their online privacy.
Leah A. Plunkett, the author, meticulously explains how the seemingly innocuous act of sharenting can inadvertently feed the data-hungry algorithms that drive many online platforms. Each post contributes to a growing digital dossier of the child, enabling big data analytics to create detailed profiles. These profiles can be exploited for targeted advertising, identity theft, or even cyberstalking, posing serious safety concerns.
Moreover, Plunkett’s book urges parents to understand that once information is shared online, control over who sees it and how it is used is relinquished. It warns parents of the “digital kidnappers,” who misuse information shared about children for malicious purposes. This term starkly illustrates the potential dangers children may face due to the overexposure of their lives online.
The book, however, doesn’t just underscore the problems—it also provides practical solutions. Parents are called upon to educate themselves and their children about online safety and digital literacy. This includes understanding privacy settings, reading and comprehending terms and conditions of online platforms, and being discerning about the kind and amount of information shared online.
The book also calls for a broader systemic change: re-evaluation of data privacy laws, especially those concerning children, and a move towards more ethical data practices within companies. The onus of protecting children’s data should not only fall upon the parents but also on the organizations that collect, store, and use this data.
“Sharenthood” concludes with a compelling plea for thoughtfulness and vigilance before participating in sharenting. It advocates for striking a balance between sharing joyous or challenging moments of parenthood and safeguarding children’s online safety and privacy. This book serves as a critical guide for parents navigating the intricacies of raising children in the digital age, with the key message being: Think before you share.

Impact of Sharenting on Children’s Future: Are We Compromising Their Opportunities?

In the enlightening book, “Sharenthood: Why We Should Think Before We Talk about Our Kids Online,” Leah A. Plunkett takes readers on a comprehensive journey through the landscape of sharenting, the common parental practice of oversharing children’s details online. A significant concern brought to light by the author is the possible long-term implications that such digital footprints might have on children’s future opportunities.
The internet is an unforgiving space. Once information is posted online, it stays there forever, a concept known as the permanency of digital footprints. In the era of digital abundance, parents may not fully realize the potential repercussions of such permanency on their children’s futures. Plunkett emphasizes how the seemingly innocent act of sharing a toddler’s tantrum or a teenager’s victory in a school competition may bear unexpected future consequences.
In a world that is increasingly relying on data-driven decision-making processes, Plunkett raises concerns about how the information shared today might influence tomorrow’s opportunities for children. For example, the stored data may impact admissions to educational institutions or job prospects. With machine learning and artificial intelligence advancing at a fast pace, predictive analytics could use a person’s digital trail from childhood to assess their suitability for a particular college course or job position in the future.
The author uses the term “digital dossiers” to describe the comprehensive profiles compiled from the online data shared by parents and other sources. These dossiers could lead to a sort of digital determinism, where children’s future opportunities are swayed by their past digital footprints, limiting their ability to reinvent themselves or escape their pasts.
Plunkett’s exploration of this issue doesn’t stop at highlighting the potential pitfalls; she also offers practical advice on mitigating these risks. Parents are encouraged to take a more mindful approach to sharing online and to make judicious decisions about the type and amount of information disclosed on the internet. It suggests taking steps such as frequent Google checks of one’s child’s name, stringent use of privacy settings, and open discussions with children about their online presence.
The book also advocates for an institutional shift towards respecting and protecting children’s privacy rights. It suggests the need for legal and societal changes, urging tech companies to adopt ethical data practices and legislators to fortify privacy laws.
In conclusion, “Sharenthood” serves as a stark reminder of the potential long-term impact of sharenting on children’s futures. It encourages parents and societies to strive for a future where children’s online privacy is respected, their digital footprints managed responsibly, and their opportunities not compromised by their past digital histories.

Positive parenting – Book Summary (

The Psychological and Societal Impacts of Sharenting: Is Our Online Behavior Affecting Our Kids?

In her thought-provoking book, “Sharenthood: Why We Should Think Before We Talk about Our Kids Online,” Leah A. Plunkett delves deep into the phenomenon known as “sharenting,” an increasingly common practice where parents share extensive details of their children’s lives online. What sets this book apart is its examination of the potential psychological and societal effects that such online disclosures could have on children.
Digital platforms have made it incredibly easy for parents to chronicle their children’s lives and share these moments with friends, family, and even the public. This culture of oversharing has opened up new debates about privacy, consent, and the psychological impact on children. Plunkett draws our attention to the potential stress, anxiety, and self-esteem issues that children might face due to their digitized childhoods.
Children might feel embarrassed, anxious, or pressured due to the public display of their lives, especially when they start understanding the concept of privacy. Instances of peers accessing their photos or personal stories could lead to situations of bullying or peer pressure. Plunkett urges parents to consider how their children might feel about these shared posts in the future.
At the societal level, the book probes into the possibility of a growing divide between those whose parents share extensively online and those who don’t. Such divides could lead to class distinctions or could affect the social standing of children within their peer groups. Moreover, it raises concerns about how this kind of public exposure might condition children to accept a surveillance society, where their every action is watched, documented, and judged.
Not just confined to identifying issues, the book offers actionable guidance for parents to navigate the digital landscape. Plunkett proposes the implementation of a “thoughtful sharing” approach where parents are encouraged to pause and consider the potential implications before posting anything about their children online. The importance of dialogue between parents and children about online behavior and its potential consequences is stressed, promoting a culture of mutual respect and understanding.
The author also calls for a broader societal response to this issue. Digital literacy should be included in education systems, equipping children with the knowledge to manage their online presence responsibly. The book advocates for changes in legislation to provide stronger data protection for children and to hold technology companies accountable for unethical data practices.
In essence, “Sharenthood” is an essential read that illuminates the potential psychological and societal implications of our online behaviors on our children. It pushes us to question and modify our digital sharing habits, keeping in mind the impact they may have on our children’s mental wellbeing and their place in society.

Digital Literacy: Is Sharenting Endangering Our Kids Online Safety?

The book “Sharenthood: Why We Should Think Before We Talk about Our Kids Online” by Leah A. Plunkett emphasizes the critical role of digital literacy in the era of “sharenting” – the practice where parents share extensive details about their children’s lives online. The author advocates for both parents and children to have an in-depth understanding of how to use digital tools and settings safely, maintaining children’s privacy and safeguarding their online presence.
Understanding digital literacy is the key to protecting children in the digital age. Digital literacy is not just about knowing how to use technology; it’s about understanding the implications of our digital actions and knowing how to navigate the online world safely and ethically. In the context of sharenting, digital literacy means understanding the potential risks associated with sharing children’s information online and knowing how to mitigate those risks.
One of the risks highlighted in the book is the violation of children’s privacy. By sharing pictures, stories, and personal details about their children online, parents might unknowingly expose their children to potential threats. These threats can range from digital kidnapping, where strangers steal children’s photos and pretend they are their own, to data mining, where personal information is used for targeted advertising or sold to third parties.
Furthermore, Plunkett addresses the potential long-term effects of sharenting. Shared information can create a digital footprint that might affect children’s future opportunities. For instance, universities or potential employers might make judgments based on the digital history of a person, including content shared by parents when their children were younger.
To combat these risks, Plunkett encourages parents to become digitally literate and make informed decisions about what they share about their children online. Parents are urged to learn about privacy settings, think critically about the possible long-term impacts of their posts, and have open conversations with their children about online safety.
The author also stresses the importance of teaching digital literacy to children. As soon as kids start interacting with digital technology, they should be educated about online safety, privacy, and the implications of their online actions. This includes understanding the permanence of online content and learning to set personal boundaries about what they share online.
Overall, “Sharenthood” illuminates the need for increased digital literacy among parents and children. It brings to the forefront the potential risks associated with sharenting and the urgent need for education and awareness about safe and responsible online practices. As we navigate the digital age, this understanding is crucial in protecting children’s online safety and ensuring their positive digital future.

Revisiting Privacy Laws: How Do Current Legislations Protect Our Children’s Online Privacy?

In Leah A. Plunkett’s thought-provoking book, “Sharenthood: Why We Should Think Before We Talk about Our Kids Online,” she boldly addresses the growing issue of ‘sharenting,’ and how it necessitates a critical revisit of current privacy laws and legislations, especially for children.
As the digital world rapidly evolves, our privacy laws struggle to keep up, leaving our children vulnerable. Parents often unknowingly compromise their children’s privacy by oversharing on social media, making it essential to reconsider how existing laws can better protect our children’s online privacy. The book spotlights this complex issue, aiming to foster an understanding of the significant role privacy laws play in today’s digital age.
The existing privacy laws and legislations were primarily developed during a time when the digital world was in its infancy. Today, we live in a completely different digital era, where data is the new gold, and every online action leaves a digital footprint. Plunkett argues that these changes necessitate a thorough reevaluation of privacy laws to protect children’s online privacy better.
One of the central concerns the author brings up is the potential misuse of children’s data gathered through online sharing. In the wrong hands, these data can be exploited for various purposes, ranging from targeted advertising to more nefarious uses. The book raises an urgent call for updated privacy laws that can prevent unauthorized use of children’s data and provide an additional layer of protection.
Additionally, Plunkett emphasizes the need for laws that govern consent regarding data collection and sharing, especially in the context of minors. In many jurisdictions, children can’t legally consent to many things due to their age, but their digital data is often freely collected, stored, and analyzed. The book proposes reevaluating these aspects of privacy laws to ensure that children’s rights are adequately protected.
Moreover, the author suggests revisiting laws concerning parents’ rights to share their children’s information. At present, many parents unknowingly infringe upon their children’s privacy rights by sharing information online. By reexamining these laws, we can potentially establish guidelines that can educate parents about the implications of their actions and promote safer sharing practices.
Plunkett also touches on the potential role of legislation in promoting digital literacy. By incorporating digital literacy into legal requirements, parents and children can be better equipped to navigate the digital world safely and responsibly.
In essence, “Sharenthood: Why We Should Think Before We Talk about Our Kids Online” serves as a clarion call for policymakers and stakeholders to revisit and update our privacy laws in response to the new challenges posed by the digital era. The book underscores the need for legal frameworks that protect children’s online privacy and equip families with the knowledge and tools necessary to navigate the digital world safely. As our world becomes more digitized, taking these proactive steps becomes increasingly vital in safeguarding our children’s digital future.

How Can Companies Improve Their Privacy Practices for Children’s Data Protection?

In the era of rapidly evolving technology, Leah A. Plunkett’s book, “Sharenthood: Why We Should Think Before We Talk about Our Kids Online,” brings to the fore the critical role of companies in shaping the online privacy landscape, particularly as it pertains to children. This intricate issue requires urgent attention, as the practices of companies can have significant implications for the privacy and safety of our children in the digital world.
The book emphasizes the need for a profound paradigm shift in how companies approach children’s data privacy. Traditional practices may no longer suffice in the face of rising privacy concerns and the increasing prevalence of digital footprints. So, what practices and policies should companies adopt to address these concerns effectively?
Firstly, the book suggests that companies need to champion the principle of ‘privacy by design.’ This concept implies that privacy should be a foundational component of any product or service, integrated from the earliest stages of design and development, rather than being a mere afterthought. Implementing this principle can lead to more secure products and services that inherently respect and protect users’ privacy.
Further, Plunkett highlights the importance of meaningful consent. Too often, consent is buried in lengthy, complex terms and conditions that most users don’t fully understand. Companies should strive to obtain explicit, informed consent from users, particularly when it comes to children’s data. This may involve presenting privacy policies in a more transparent, user-friendly manner, ensuring that users (or their guardians) are fully aware of the implications of their consent.
Thirdly, the book stresses the need for stringent data minimization practices. Essentially, companies should only collect and store data that is absolutely necessary for their services. This practice can reduce the risk of data breaches and help ensure that sensitive information, particularly concerning children, is not unnecessarily exposed.
Moreover, Plunkett advocates for companies to implement robust security measures to protect the data they collect. This includes using encryption, regularly updating and patching software vulnerabilities, and employing strong access control measures.
Finally, the book encourages companies to be more transparent about their data sharing practices. This can involve disclosing any third-party partnerships and explaining exactly how user data is utilized, enabling users to make more informed decisions about their data.
In summary, “Sharenthood: Why We Should Think Before We Talk about Our Kids Online” highlights the pivotal role that companies play in shaping our children’s online privacy landscape. By adopting more proactive, privacy-centric practices and policies, companies can contribute to a safer and more secure digital environment for our children. It serves as a timely reminder of the urgent need for all stakeholders – from parents and educators to policymakers and companies – to play their part in protecting our children’s digital future.

Should Parents Think Twice Before Sharing About Their Children Online? Insights from “Sharenthood”

The Internet is awash with personal content. However, in the seemingly innocuous act of sharing, are we risking the privacy and security of our most vulnerable? This is a central question addressed by Leah A. Plunkett in her insightful book, “Sharenthood: Why We Should Think Before We Talk about Our Kids Online.”
In today’s digital landscape, a child’s life can be documented online from birth, sometimes even earlier. From adorable baby photos to achievements and milestones, parents often unknowingly create a comprehensive digital footprint of their child, long before the child can comprehend the concept of privacy. So, what are the implications of this digital oversharing, and why should parents think twice before hitting ‘share’?
Firstly, Plunkett highlights the vulnerability of children’s data. Every digital interaction generates data, and a child’s digital footprint is no exception. This data can be harvested, shared, and even sold, potentially exposing children to targeted advertising and other forms of exploitation. Therefore, parents’ decisions to share can inadvertently result in their child’s data being used in ways they neither intend nor approve.
Secondly, the book argues that parental sharing can unwittingly infringe on children’s future autonomy. By shaping their child’s online identity, parents may impact their child’s future self-perception and the perception of others. The effects of this can range from embarrassment to impacting opportunities for their child’s future, such as college admissions or job prospects.
Thirdly, Plunkett underlines the potential psychological implications of ‘sharenting.’ Children may feel undue pressure or anxiety from having their lives publicly displayed online, often without their consent. The long-term impacts of this on children’s mental health and self-esteem are still unknown and deserve serious consideration.
Despite these alarming prospects, the book does not suggest a total moratorium on sharing. Instead, it advocates for a more thoughtful and measured approach to sharing children’s lives online. Parents should be aware of the potential risks, mindful of their children’s rights to privacy, and proactive in understanding and controlling the digital footprint they create for their children.
The book also calls for broader systemic changes. This includes improved digital literacy education for parents and children, updated privacy laws, and better policies and practices from companies handling children’s data.
In conclusion, “Sharenthood: Why We Should Think Before We Talk about Our Kids Online” serves as a compelling wake-up call to parents about the potential consequences of oversharing their children’s lives on the internet. By encouraging a more cautious and informed approach to sharing, it hopes to promote a safer and more respectful digital environment for the youngest generation.

Raising Digital Awareness: How “Sharenthood” Urges Improvement in Our Online Practices for Children’s Privacy

In our fast-paced digital era, the boundaries of public and private life often blur, especially when it comes to sharing about children online. Leah A. Plunkett’s thought-provoking book “Sharenthood: Why We Should Think Before We Talk about Our Kids Online” is a much-needed guide in this context, which aims to raise awareness and prompt a revision of our digital practices.
Parents’ joy and pride in their children naturally prompt them to share children’s photos, achievements, and milestones online, with many not realizing the potential implications. However, Plunkett asserts that it is time we reassess these behaviors, in light of growing concerns around data privacy, child safety, and consent.
One of the key issues the book raises is the potential vulnerability of children’s data. Plunkett cautions parents that every post or digital interaction generates data that could be exploited in unexpected ways. This could potentially expose children to inappropriate advertising, predatory behavior, or other forms of data misuse. What makes this especially worrying is that these digital footprints are often created before children can understand or consent to their data being shared.
The book also spotlights the potential impact on a child’s future autonomy. The online personas curated by parents can shape their child’s identity in ways that could have long-lasting effects. From influencing their self-perception to potentially affecting future opportunities, such as college admissions or job prospects, the child’s digital identity is something that needs careful consideration.
From a psychological perspective, Plunkett explores the potential impact of ‘sharenting’ on children’s mental health. She argues that constant exposure and scrutiny can place undue pressure on children and impact their self-esteem, with the full extent of long-term consequences yet to be determined.
In response to these concerns, “Sharenthood” proposes a combination of strategies. For parents, it promotes digital literacy and conscious decision-making about sharing children’s lives online. By being aware of privacy settings, understanding the concept of digital footprints, and considering children’s consent, parents can navigate the digital world more responsibly.
On a broader scale, the book also calls for improved privacy laws, particularly those protecting children’s data, and for companies to implement better policies concerning data handling and user privacy.
In conclusion, “Sharenthood: Why We Should Think Before We Talk about Our Kids Online” is a compelling call to raise awareness about children’s digital privacy. By urging improvement in our online practices, it seeks to foster a safer and more respectful digital environment for our children.