This parenting a teen/tween in the 2000's can be a tough gig. Forget the moodiness, the never ending showers, and the constant replacing of the earbuds.... I can't keep up with the technology!
Mom, can I get snapchat?
Mom says no because she read an article that listed the apps you shouldn't let your teen have and snapchat was like number two. Never mind that kik was also mentioned in the article and she has had that for years.
Anyway, lather, rinse, repeat. Mom, can I? Nope.
Saying no, arbitrarily, is not the way I typically parent and I don't put a ton of stock into parenting articles necessarily. It seemed only fair to check things out for myself. ll of this to tell you I now have a snapchat account. I am probably too old and therefore lame to know what to do with it, but that seems to be neither here nor there. I have one unfortunate younger friend who has been the recipient of my clumsy (read embarrassing) attempts at being snapchat cool. Both girls have been eager to show me the ropes..... I blame them for all the ridiculous snapchats that have been sent into the world.
In the end the risk factor is no different then texting or instagram or facebook (which apparently isn't cool, who knew) or kik or the million other apps out there I have no idea about. I think you need to sit down with your kid and discuss expectations for their behaviour (easy, same as always, be kind, don't be an asshole). Explain that nothing lasts for mere seconds on the internet. Once it is out there it is out there for good. Be respectful of yourself and other people. As a parent I like to keep myself in the mix and pay attention, ask who they connect with, ask how their friends use it. Really at this stage it's a lot of hoping that they were paying attention to what you've been teaching them the last decade or so.
If you need me I will be over here snapchatting my dinner.