BPA Featured Article

New Apps Available in Social Media Monitoring

By Juliana Kenny, TMCnet Managing Editor
June 16, 2010

Online privacy protection is increasingly a pressing issue for anyone with an identity on the Internet. Every new and trendy application makes the whole world more accessible to the fingertips and face of each person with Internet access…even if that person hasn't hit the double digits yet.

Parents, it would seem, have more to worry about since they must protect their own identities as well as those of their children. Cultural developments like cyber-bullying and online sexual harassment have required the social media monitoring industry to step forward and stake its claim in the world of online privacy protection.
Recently, the third-party social network firm, Schakra released an application for Facebook (News - Alert) that allows parents to become social media monitors, themselves. The application, GoGoStat Parental Guidance is designed so that parents can set ground rules and monitor their children's use of Facebook. Schakra plans to make other social media sites available to Parental Guidance while also releasing a premium paid version of the application later on this year.
Parental Guidance allows parents to set the standards for monitoring a child's activity on Facebook by setting alerts when unwanted solicitations occur, any photos of the child are uploaded, or if improper text is used. Parents can create the criteria for how the child is monitored and exchange a security code with the child so that only the parents have access to the monitoring system. They can manipulate the tool so that they are privy to private information revealed on Facebook such as home address, phone number, age, and the system includes a panic button that will issue a report for law enforcement officials should any related emergencies arise.
This social media monitoring system reflects the broader cultural notion that, now with social media sites like Facebook, children and teenagers can be in danger without leaving their homes. As Parental Guidance is the first social media monitoring application for Facebook with more sites following this year, the app is also able to, "find the balance between a teen's privacy and its safety," according to Lori Getz, founder of Cyber Education Consultants.
With applications like Parental Guidance constantly being developed for the newest-of-the-new Internet fads, companies that develop social media monitoring software, such as BPA Quality, are constantly updating their tools and technologies to adjust to the ever-generating challenges presented to those who monitor the wired (and wireless) waves.

Juliana Kenny is a TMCnet reporter and editor. To read more of her articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Juliana Kenny