12 Social Media Apps All Parents Should Know Series-Day 2


12 Social Media Apps All Parents of Teens Should Know Day 2Welcome to Day 2 of the 12 Social Media Apps All Parents Should Know Series.

This week we’re talking about 12 social media apps popular with teens.
Some of these might be familiar to you. Others might be new to you.

Yesterday we discussed Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. If you missed that post you can view it here.

Today we’re talking about Snapchat, Tumblr and Google+

I’ll  continue to introduce 3 social media platforms each day this week. On Friday, I’ll wrap up the week by posting all 12 social media apps for you. My hope is we’ll end the week as parents who are a bit more informed.

Let’s jump in today!





Snapchat is a photo and video sharing application. It differs from other social media applications because with Snapchat photos and videos you send disappear seconds after they’re viewed. You decide how long a photo will “live,” from 1 to 10 seconds, after it’s viewed.

What Teens Say

Snapchat’s creators intended the app to function as a way for users to share fun, light moments without the risk of having them go public. That’s the appeal of this app for most teens. They can send goofy or embarrassing photos to one another.

What Parents Should Know

It’s a myth that Snapchats go away forever. An image sent never truly goes away. The person on the receiving end can take a screenshot of the image before it disappears. Snapchats can be recovered. And, there are now apps which screenshot a snap.

Many parents are concerned that the seemingly risk-free messaging might encourage users to share pictures containing inappropriate content.




Tumblr is like a cross between a blog and Twitter: It’s a streaming scrapbook of text, photos, and/or videos and audio clips. Users create and follow short blogs, or “tumblelogs,” that can be seen by anyone online if made public.

What Teens Say

Many teens have tumblrs for personal use where they share photos, videos, and other things they find funny with their friends. Tumblelogs with funny memes often go viral online, as well. One popular was “Texts from Hillary.”

What Parents Should Know

This online hangout is hip and creative but you can find sometimes find raunchy material. Pornographic images and videos, depictions of violence, self-harm, drug use, and offensive language are easily searchable.

Privacy can be guarded, but only through a bit of a workaround. The first profile a member creates is public and viewable by anyone on the Internet. Members who desire full privacy need to create a second profile, which they’re able to password protect.

Posts are often copied and shared. Reblogging on Tumblr is similar to re-tweeting where a post that’s reblogged from one tumblelog then appears on another. Many teens like that. In fact, they want their posts reblogged. That’s the idea for most when joining Tumblr. Keep that in mind and ask yourself do you really want your kids’ words and photos on someone else’s page?




Google+ is Google’s social network. It is open to teens. Google+ has taken Facebook’s friend concept to another level by using “circles.” These circles give users more control about what they share with whom.

What Teens Say

Teens aren’t wild about Google+ yet and the movement to it is slow but steady. It could be because teens are finding their parents are more accepting of Google+. The social aspects of it can be used for things like completing homework, so parents don’t feel it’s a total time waster. One popular aspect of Google+ is the addition of real-time video chats in Hangouts (virtual gatherings with approved friends).

What Parents Should Know

Teens can limit who sees certain posts by using “circles.” Friends, acquaintances, and the general public can all be placed in different circles. If you’re friends with your kid on Google+, know that you may be in a different “circle” than their friends and therefore seeing different information.

Google+ takes teens’ safety seriously. Google+ created age-appropriate privacy default settings for any users whose registration information shows them to be teens. It also automatically reminds them about who may be seeing their posts if they’re posting on public or extended circles.

Data tracking and targeting are concerns. Google+ activity is shared across Google services including Gmail and YouTube. This information is used for targeting ads to the user and you can’t opt out of this type of sharing across Google services.

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  1. Live Streaming Teens - Leah Nieman on May 3, 2015 at 2:22 am

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