When social media began making waves some ten years ago, it was different, fun and exciting. We reconnected with old friends, discovered a new way to stay in touch with loved ones and were finally given a platform to share details about our lives while keeping up with loved ones.
Fast-forward a decade later and it seems like social media has gone in all different directions. I mean, we’ve got the good (staying in touch), the bad (cyber-stalking, etc), and the ugly (what I’m about to tell you). According to new reports, parents are being strongly encouraged to delete an app called Kik from their children’s smartphones. And here’s why:
Kik is a messaging app that is not always tied to your cell phone number, so it allows its users a lot more anonymity. It allows teens to send messages online without alerting their parents.
There are just too many instances of cases where Kik was used by predators to engage in contact with young people. A man in Alabama was charged with statutory rape and attempted kidnapping of a 14-year-old girl he contacted on Kik. A man in St. Louis used Kik to exchange child pornography. And a Colorado man took a 13-year-old girl to a hotel room and sexually assaulted her after meeting her on Kik. The horrible murder of Nicole Madison Lovell by two Virginia Tech freshmen happened after she chatted with an 18-year-old man she met on the app.
While some people might think that we are overreacting about this app, I’m the kind of person who doesn’t like to take any chances, especially when it comes to my children’s safety. Why risk it? Why even bother chatting with strangers on an app to begin with? Critics say that until Kik adds more features to keep its users safe, it’s best to get rid of it.
Thoughts, Hot Moms?
The allegations are beyond upsetting: two Virginia Tech freshmen charged with the premeditated kidnapping and killing of a 13-year-old girl who, authorities say, communicated with her murderer online.