Never mind that the feng shui experts think that a computer in a bedroom
interrupts the flow of peace and tranquility. The computer should not be
in a child's bedroom because it is too tempting to push the limits when
there is not an adult milling about, ready to look over their shoulder at
any minute. (POS is online slang for "parent over shoulder" by the way).
Let them whine about not having any privacy. Let them whine about their
rights. Let them get carried away and start hollering about the Bill of
Rights and the Constitution, and you should write down what they say and
keep it forever, as it will be a priceless reminder of this moment and
should also be used as an example when they bring home a bad grade. This
country is built on democracy, but your home, is for the safety of your
It is not that kids should not be on the computer at all, it is just
that unattended or unsupervised children tend to make decisions that are,
well, childish. They will type in naughty words in the browser. They will
start up conversations with strangers, even those with screen names like
Herbdaperv011 and others. They will tell their age, their birthdates and
other information when asked. They will admit to feeling lonely or
depressed or sad. They will even discuss the times that they are home
alone. They do not realize that they are putting themselves in danger
most of the time because they do not think of these things.
If you are going to have a computer in your home that your children will
have access to, it should be in a public room with the understanding that
you may peep at what they are doing at any time. You need to establish
parental control or get rid of the computer - it is that simple. There
are two major areas that you need to establish major control over, and
those are the kid's emails and the kid's browser. You can do this in a
number of ways, but the easiest way is to use programs like kids emails
and kids internet browsers.
With both programs, you can protect your child and stop them from seeing
sites that they should not be or getting questionable emails. Kids email
programs allow you control of who your kids are emailing, and about what.
You can also set a time limit on their internet use, have an activity log
of when they log on and block specific people.
If your child is smart enough to spout off about the Bill of Rights but
not smart enough to figure out that there is nothing in there about their
right to private computer use (watch them try to work the First Amendment
into that one too), they are smart enough to get around other parental
controls but not smart enough to not talk to predators. It is up to you
to protect them from themselves. If they want a computer in their
bedroom, tell them they can have one, just as soon as they have the money
to buy their own.