Friday, September 25, 2015

iRules, by Janell Burley Hofmann

iRules: What Every Tech-Healthy Family Needs to Know about Selfies, Sexting, Gaming, and Growing Up isn't really a book about technology; it's a book about parenting.  Jannell Burley Hofmann wants parents to recognize that, yes, there's lots of new technology out there, but that parents have a responsibility to keep up with their children, no matter the media.

Hofmann encourages parents not only to be aware of what social media and other communications their children have online, but to follow their Facebook, Instragram, Twitter, or other feeds, so they can see what their children and peers are posting.  Further, she asserts that parents' demanding to have access to password-protected sites is acceptable.  Just as we might allow our children to have a lock on their bedroom door, to allow for privacy when needed or wanted, we would insist that we have a key (and that they not lock themselves in with friends of the opposite sex!).

A good parent will have a good idea of who their child is hanging out with, what kinds of activities they participate in, and what their hobbies and interests are.  Electronic communications should not change that.  Even as social media, video gaming, and electronic-based relationships become more complex, parents have a responsibility to provide guidance and oversight.  Hofmann's suggestions are reasonable, knowledgable, and welcome.

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the complimentary electronic review copy!

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