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Photo Insecurity: On Being a Parent in the Digital Age

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Everyone shares photos online these days. I’ve done it for years – on Instagram, on Facebook and Twitter, and even on MySpace (remember MySpace?) when that was a thing. From pulling pranks on my buddies to fun nights out at our favorite bar, I’ve got years’ worth of photos posted online for all to see.

When I got married, I was proud for everyone to see photos of my wife and I saying “I do.” Awesome shots from our honeymoon in Mexico followed, getting lots of likes and well-wishes from close friends and not-so-close acquaintances. We’ve never been super-private people and were happy for others to share in our life and adventures.

That all changed when we became parents. While we posted pictures of our daughter and then, after he arrived, our son, I didn’t feel as good about sharing them. Could our social media accounts be hacked by people we didn’t know? What of the people that are currently on my list? I know probably 25% of them in real life, but the rest are friends of friends or people with shared interests whom I’ve never met.

Could some creep get revealing information about our kids or their location through the photo data, or maybe pass the photos around online?

As a parent in this social media age, this weighs heavy on my mind. It turns out that I’m not the only one. Cartridge Save did a survey and found out that 83% of the parents who responded feel concerned about sharing photos of their kids online.

With those kinds of numbers, will the traditional method of printing out (and actually valuing) our pictures experience a resurgence? Time will tell. As for me, I’m actually starting to miss the good old days of flipping through a photo album of 25 fantastic photos instead of flipping through a phone with mediocre ones scattered throughout. That combined with the safety issues has given me a real reason to start rethinking my photo priorities.

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