Finstagram: Parents, You’ve Been Warned

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Every family has a different set of rules for their child’s social media habits, and there’s a new trend that could change the way parents set through rules: “Finstagram”. While Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat and Google+ all set the age limit at 13, parents will expand upon formal regulations. For example, setting boundaries on the type of content they can upload, whom they can follow, and when they can use it. But, a tale as old as time, kids find a way around this and now we bring you…

finstagram

Combining the words “fake” and “Instagram,” middle school and high school students have been creating alternate Instagram accounts. These accounts can be used innocently (to share embarrassing photos with a smaller following, like close girlfriends) or wickedly (to hide pictures of parties with alcohol and other drugs from parents, teachers and others).

vicThe idea that Finstagram shares pictures of funny faces seems unnecessary when Snapchat exists. Therefore, the type or humor they might be aspiring for could be a sarcastic Instagram, perhaps with uncharacteristic captions and photos. In this case, you have to be careful that your child isn’t bullying someone and mocking their sincere uploads.

Perhaps your child’s Instagram account is squeaky clean, but what about their Finsta? You can try to find these accounts by using Instagram’s Find Friends feature, which utilizes your contacts list or Facebook.

However, it’s more likely that their original Instagram links with their primary email address and Facebook profile. So, if your child is young and you have an understanding about parents checking phones, this might be the only way to find the Finstagram.

IMG_2681After all, if your child wants to hide photos from you, it only takes a few seconds to create a new email address and thus a new Instagram.

There have been instances in which these fake Instagram accounts have been posting inappropriate photos of school students, either taken at a social event, or even digitally altered (photoshopped) to depict an otherwise “good” kid into an inappropriate situation. In these cases, the school has had to contact Instagram to shut down the account and contact the parents of every student in the school, with harsh ramifications for the students involved. So it’s no wonder that parents should take this type of online behavior very seriously. Although, the worst part about Finstagram’s are that 90% of them are going undetected, so it’s the responsibility of every adult to watch out for the warning signs, whether you’re a parent, teacher or friend of the children involved.

Try talking to your child today about social media usage and repercussions.

Do you know about any parents that found their child’s Finstagram?

How did they discover the account?

Do you think most Finstagrams are harmless or harmful?

 

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