My boys love to take over my computer. Any time they can, they will.
And they manage to navigate around pretty well without any help. At first, I was impressed. Aw, isn’t that cute, they found videos to watch.
But then I heard one of my boys squealing with glee “He’s peeing off a cliff! Mario is peeing off a cliff!” and sure enough, in what had looked to be a demo of a video game, there was one of the main characters peeing all over the screen. At least it was a cartoon.
And then there was the Barney video they found. Which I thought was totally odd since they don’t like the big purple dinosaur and are *sniffle, sniffle* too old for such things. But in the middle of Barney singing, someone comes out and tells Barney exactly what they think he should do to himself(probably a thought some parents have had when watching the show for the 12th time before it’s even lunchtime, but definitely not appropriate for little ears) AND then Barney gets shot and bleeds all over the screen.
Videos that looked like they were for kids but were definitely not. Not even in the least. We’ve solved some of the problem with finding kid safe videos, but what about the rest of the web?
It scares me a little that my oldest would navigate somewhere he shouldn’t be and enter in way too much personal information. Apparently it might not be such a great thing that he can type in his name, age, address, phone number, etc. Because where is that info going and who is going to see it? Despite the fact that I tend to spill quite a bit of our personal lives online, I know where to draw the line and when it’s not appropriate to give out that sort of info. But an 8 year old? Notsomuch.
But it’s not like I’m going to keep my kids offline. They’d go into withdrawl. Or actually, the kindergartener and second grader need it for their homework anyway.
Here’s where Cocoon comes in. It was developed by the digital safety leaders of Virtual World Computing in collaboration with the KlassKids Foundation (founded by father of kidnap and murder victim Polly Klass), CocoonKids for KlassKids creates a safe space for your kids to operate within while online.
Cocoon operates from a parent generated White List, kids can only interact with preapproved sites. Sites that parents actually have taken the time to visit and deem safe. It’s a free service and it’s new, so you can help build the White List by adding sites that you think are appropriate for your kids.
Go to Cocoon for KlaasKids Whitelist Instructions for full instructions, but it’s super easy! You simply sign up for Cocoon here: Get Cocoon. Then download this creation file: Cocoon Whitelist File. Then add it to your toolbar by dragging the file into your browser. Then visit your kids’ favorite online sites and mark them appropriate using the little whitelist tab in the upper corner of your toolbar. It will help create a safer and more appropriate online experience for all our kids!
So please, click over and help build the Coocoon for KlaasKids Whitelist.
This is a sponsored post, but all opinions are my own.