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MsK
09-03-2008, 04:58 AM
:)

Bubastes
09-03-2008, 05:02 AM
How do you know it's the celeb and not, say, one of her staff members?

JoNightshade
09-03-2008, 05:04 AM
I'm not a 'stand over your shoulder' type mom, but I do grab his cell phone or computer from time to time and ask him to show me a few recent messages, just to be on the safe side... and they sound legit. (Besides, it's this new celeb friend who has led him to these places)

You say that last sentence as if somehow that makes it safe? ;)

Celebrities are no safer than anyone else on the internet. Probably less so.

Seaclusion
09-03-2008, 05:05 AM
Yes, always cause for concern with teens and anonymous strangers over the internet, telephone, or whatever. With the anonymity that the electronic age has brought us comes real concerns for everyone, especially gulable, inexperienced, naive teens. Be careful, very careful.

Richard

Kate Thornton
09-03-2008, 05:05 AM
I think you are prudent and have every right to be concerned. I really like the way you are handling this - I know next to nothing about current teen celebs (and hope to keep it that way just for the sake of my random access memory) but current concerned Moms are a good thing, and your teen sounds like he's pretty level-headed. Together you can keep him out of trouble and still let him explore the big world out there. Sounds like you both have a good handle on this.

Seaclusion
09-03-2008, 05:05 AM
You say that last sentence as if somehow that makes it safe? ;)

Celebrities are no safer than anyone else on the internet. Probably less so.

Can you say Michael Jackson

Richard

Calla Lily
09-03-2008, 05:06 AM
I'm a paranoid mom. If this were my son, I'd have the same concerns, i.e., why would celebs talk so openly with a non-celeb kid?

I'd take him to any meetings as well. Perhaps this is the time to buy spying software so you can read his IMs and chat transcripts.

I know: it's violating his privacy. Talk to the oven mitt. He's a minor. Even if there aren't 50yo perverts in this chat room, look at all the stuff celebs get involved with.

DL Hegel
09-03-2008, 05:06 AM
Yes, I think you should be cautious. I think it is natural to wonder about that kind of stuff. I'm not sure what you can do but I bet some of the more techno savvy folks could tell you about ways to monitor his communications without him being the wiser. I wish you good luck with it--it would make me concerned too.I've always been very careful with my son and his Internet usage; I gave him the whole 'that pretty girl you met on MySpace could be a fat 40 year old perverted man' talk a long time ago.
Now, he's involved in something different.
Over the summer, he met and developed a friendship with a very popular teen celebrity who has introduced him to a whole new world, including a special chat room that has just about every teen celebrity you can imagine hanging around.
Needless to say, he's fascinated and spends enormous amounts of time in this chat room and IM'ing and texting these new friends.
I'm not a 'stand over your shoulder' type mom, but I do grab his cell phone or computer from time to time and ask him to show me a few recent messages, just to be on the safe side... and they sound legit. (Besides, it's this new celeb friend who has led him to these places)
I just find it hard to believe that these household name teen celebs would be so open with their IM'ing, texting and computer chat.
Today, I had the 'I'm just a little concerned that these people may not be the celebrities they claim to be and they could be the fat 40 year old perverted men i had told you about' talk.
It's still pretty innocent as far as teens go, but the way its going, it will lead to meetings and I did let him know that I want to be the one to take him to initial meetings with his new friends, that I would look to make sure he is safe, but wouldn't interfere.
He agreed to this.
What do you think? Do I have cause for concern?

jannawrites
09-03-2008, 05:10 AM
I think you're reasonably cautious, absolutely. Keep an informed eye on him, as you have been.

Still, I have to question the "celebrity status" for these teens, especially since there's such a large group and they're allowing "outsiders." Would teen idols really have all that much time to be online? I'd hate for your son to find out a truth other than what he believes, especially if these friends are positive role models, but even moreso if they aren't who they say they are.

Good luck with this situation.

Pagey's_Girl
09-03-2008, 05:10 AM
It could be the real deal - someone I know online befriended one of the members of a rather popular band through the band's official chatroom. We didn't believe her at first, either, but it turned out to really be him. And he turned out to be a really decent guy.

He's not going behind your back about it; he's willing to let you come along for any real-life meetings. That's cool. I think I'd just wait and see what comes of it. )I confess I'd be cautious but fascinated, too. But that's just me.)

Gehanna
09-03-2008, 05:13 AM
Needless to say, he's fascinated and spends enormous amounts of time in this chat room and IM'ing and texting these new friends.



The "spending enormous amounts of time" is more than enough reason for concern.

Sincerely,
Gehanna

Williebee
09-03-2008, 05:15 AM
Krystal, check your rep points.

It sounds like you are on the right track. Caution is always a good thing when transitioning from online to RL (Real Life). Things, and people, are often not what they seem, and rarely the same people in the real world, if only because the keyboard changes the way we communicate what we think, and how we act. It's something we try to hammer home to parents and school kids everyday in my job.

It could be just fine, but you're a good parent for checking it out.

I'd rather be embarrassed and wrong than right and too slow any time.

vixey
09-03-2008, 05:23 AM
As a mom of 3 older teens, my main concern (outside of the obvious stalking, pervert posing as celeb teen thing) is how does his internet usage affect his homework or sleep? When our 15 year old daughter complained of being tired all the time this summer, we checked into her texting minutes and discovered she was texting at 3:00 a.m.! (Our phone at night now.) Same could go for the computer, but she can't get to that in the wee hours.

vixey
09-03-2008, 05:29 AM
I guess I should say a normal amount of time for many teens. I told my son he should go into orthopedics as all of his generation are (is?) going to need new thumbs by the time they are in their 20's from all of the text messaging they do.

I told my son to study Japanese because of anime.

Gehanna
09-03-2008, 05:47 AM
My daughter just told me that she is glad I did not to allow her to use a laptop at school this year. She also pointed out how she is seldom on the computer at home.

Last year, she spent a great deal of time online. That, along with other events, destroyed her grades. This year, so far, her lowest class average is 94.75. I am very proud of her and I am very thankful for all the effort she is putting forth. Last year was hell for both of us.

I wish you and your son the best in dealing with current concerns.

Sincerely,
Gehanna

Silver King
09-03-2008, 06:04 AM
I don't care if it's a "teen celebrity" or some unknown person: my child wouldn't be meeting anyone he met online, ever, whether I was in tow or not. For one thing, it sets a bad precedent for his future involvement with online relationships. If this meeting goes well, he might think he doesn't need your approval for his next sojourn and may go out alone to meet someone.

Maybe I'm too protective of my children, but there's no way, no how and not ever, EVER, would I allow my kids to hook up with someone they've met online. EVER.

(Is that enough use of EVER to make my point?)

C.bronco
09-03-2008, 06:06 AM
There are some sites where people "role play" as their favorite celebrities. I'd look at it very closely.

maestrowork
09-03-2008, 06:07 AM
Maybe I'm too protective of my children, but there's no way, no how and not ever, EVER, would I allow my kids to hook up with someone they've met online. EVER.

(Is that enough use of EVER to make my point?)

But Paris Hilton is hawt.


p.s. Krystal, you are right to be concerned. There are a lot of "fakes" on the Internet. Anyone could pretend to be someone they're not, and some teens are very gullible (and the allure of being in some in-group of celebrities is too much to decline). It could be a harmless thing where kids are just pretending, or it could be something sinister like online predators. I'd be skeptical that teen celebrities would be hanging out online chatting and texting people they don't know. Don't these people have their own entourage, and some shows to do?

jannawrites
09-03-2008, 06:24 AM
Krystal, you've got me uber-curious as to who this girl is.

Williebee
09-03-2008, 06:44 AM
I wouldn't try to change anyone's mind, especially when it comes to being cautious about their kids. But it is a different world out there now. Online is more connected to our kids than party lines were in my parent's youth.

Social Networking sites are bringing people together for work, school, and play. Are there bad things out there? Sure. There's bad things on the playground and on the street, and at work. We taught them about being safe in those situations. We have to teach them how to "look both ways" online, as well.

One place that has been very helpful in the schools I work with is I-Safe (http://isafe.org/).

benbradley
09-03-2008, 08:21 AM
I know I am being a bit secretive and I've advised my son to respect the privacy of his friend also.
If it is her corresponding with him (and not her assistant), I know she doesn't want it blasted across the internet.
I think she is real (or its at least her assistant).
As far as the others he met in the chat room, I'm a little more concerned- although I have gotten some confirmation that the chat site is on the up and up.
As parents, we've just got to keep our eyes open. Kids are so easily influenced and when you add a celebrity factor (real or not), they can be even more influenced.
It this a certain "brand" of chat? Do you or your son know what an IP address is, and can either of you find the IP address of someone who's posting on a chat group/channel?

This gets a little technical, but it's good to learn. The other person's IP addres can (with RDNS) usuallly tell you what city or metropolitan area he/she is in, and you can figure out if this jibes with what area of the country or world he/she is telling you he/she is in. An IP address can be spoofed, but that's an advanced enough thing that people don't think about it, don't have a clue how to do it and/or think they're "anonymous on the internet" when committing a crime, but they're not (see the myspace suicide case or the many examples in the news of people being arrested for soliciting underage people).

So if they're saying they're in LA but the RDNS says "adsl_12_34_dothan.bellsouth.net" (I just made that up, but it'll look something like that), then yeah, they're in LA: Lower Alabama (Dothan is a big city down there).

Shadow_Ferret
09-03-2008, 06:45 PM
I doubt very much any of those chatting are actual teen celebs. Like they have nothing better to do than pal around on the internet with a bunch of nobodies. More likely it's either someone who works for the teen celeb in some capacity and is authorized to chat for them OR, and this is what I really think, it's the 40-year-old pervert in Montana getting off talking to teens himself.

Because I watch E! television, and most teen celebs are busy shopping or getting wasted in underage drinking parties. They don't have time to sit around and chat on a computer.

Anyway, teen celebs or not, I think I'd be telling my child no chat rooms period. You didn't mention your child's age, but mine is 13, and his internet use is very restricted. He can look at legos on ebay and go to youtube to watch Weird Al videos.

sadron
09-03-2008, 07:07 PM
I could be worried too. People can fake celebrity.

Mela
09-03-2008, 08:54 PM
Detective mom, let me digress to the age of 14 ... when the telephone was our only means of communicating with celebrities. I called the Donny Osmond hotline (I'll pause here to let the howling die down) ..................
but alas, the discussion only went one way. Donny really wasn't on the other end of the phone. And my father got a whopping phone bill so my days of contacting celebs came to a crashing halt.

I don't think you're dealing with a 40-year-old pervert, but teenage celebrity predators who are trying to expand their circle and might, might, eventually seek out your son for more than just casual chat - perhaps money?

So I'd definitely sit him down and might I add, I think you've handled the situation well.

Shadow_Ferret
09-03-2008, 09:02 PM
You two are freaks. :tongue

Mela
09-03-2008, 09:24 PM
Whatsa matter, mon Shadow?
Still upset from the slight from Olivia Newton John? Or perhaps it was Marie Osmond?

Maryn
09-04-2008, 12:28 AM
I don't care if it's a "teen celebrity" or some unknown person: my child wouldn't be meeting anyone he met online, ever, whether I was in tow or not. <snip>

Maybe I'm too protective of my children, but there's no way, no how and not ever, EVER, would I allow my kids to hook up with someone they've met online. EVER.

(Is that enough use of EVER to make my point?)Is that why you're not coming to Ray's House of Love get-together? Because, trust me, I am the pervert your parents warned you about. The white gloves and prim little dress are a disguise.

Maryn, winking

Shadow_Ferret
09-04-2008, 12:31 AM
Whatsa matter, mon Shadow?
Still upset from the slight from Olivia Newton John? Or perhaps it was Marie Osmond?
Pikers! I had the hots for Anne Francis.

http://www.jeffbots.com/anne_francis.jpg
Lucky robot.
Is that why you're not coming to Ray's House of Love get-together? Because, trust me, I am the pervert your parents warned you about. The white gloves and prim little dress are a disguise.

Maryn, winkingWell, that's my reason, anyway. :)

GLAZE_by_KyrstinMc
09-16-2008, 06:22 AM
If I were in your son's position, I would not trust the people to be holding their own as actual celebrities. Most celebrities have other things to do, and need to be keeping their appearance up (talking to random 16-year-old boys wouldn't apply!).

With all due respect to your son, :) people pretend to be famous online a lot, since it's much harder to deny it than in real life.

I'd tell him to watch out, I don't see any harm in him just chatting with them as long as he doesn't get lured in by them . . . giving away vital personal information would not be ideal . . .

I wish you good luck with this! :)

Yeshanu
09-16-2008, 09:37 AM
I don't care if it's a "teen celebrity" or some unknown person: my child wouldn't be meeting anyone he met online, ever, whether I was in tow or not. For one thing, it sets a bad precedent for his future involvement with online relationships. If this meeting goes well, he might think he doesn't need your approval for his next sojourn and may go out alone to meet someone.

Maybe I'm too protective of my children, but there's no way, no how and not ever, EVER, would I allow my kids to hook up with someone they've met online. EVER.

(Is that enough use of EVER to make my point?)

I have problems with this for two reasons, SK:

1) As an active member of AW for many years, I've developed friendships with many folks here, and I've gone out of my way to meet a couple of them.

2) My son, now 22, also has an active on-line life, and has safely made the transition from having virtual friends to real-life friends. I wasn't thrilled when he was going out with a 17-y-o from Ohio, but what mother is thrilled to find her baby's grown up and is dating? :)

Some things to keep in mind:

a) If your son will let you drive him to the meeting, that's great. If it were me, I'd make sure the other party knew I was around, but then I'd go get a coffee and sit by myself.

b) Make sure it's during daylight hours, and in a very public place, like a mall.

c) Have a time limit for that first meeting, and the few following it.

d) Remember that more kids are lured into trouble by real life friends than by on line friends, and more kids are kidnapped by their own fathers than by strangers. Be watchful, but don't exaggerate the danger so much that the kids become afraid of interacting with others. Remember that everyone is a stranger until you get to know them.

e) The age and maturity level of your teen is an important factor in how much freedom you give them, but by the time they reach fifteen or so, it's time to start loosening the apron strings. They have to learn how to deal with life.

f) Re: too much chatting on-line. What Gehenna said is very important. They have to realize that too much socializing, on-line or off, isn't the best thing for them in the long run...

g) I'm also leery of the "teen celeb" thing, but I've been around enough not to dismiss it out of hand. If you go with son to the first meeting, and it's in public, though, it shouldn't be too much of a problem.

SPMiller
09-16-2008, 01:17 PM
A decade ago, an awful lot of teens I knew seemed to enjoy chat rooms and instant-messaging software. With the boom in text messaging and Internet usage since then, I wouldn't be surprised if even teenaged celebs spent lots of time in chat rooms. However, what makes my spidey sense tingle is the fact that they seem to be inviting random strangers into their midst. Maybe it's an ego-stroking thing, sure, but if I were a celebrity, I think I'd be more concerned at that age with using my fame to meet girls--or boys, I suppose, if I were female--in real life.

Cassiopeia
09-16-2008, 01:24 PM
Anyone can be anything they want on the Internet. I stand by a famous line:

"trust no one" ~Special Agent Fox Mulder, F.B.I X-files~

*smacks Haggis*

HE IS TOO REAL!