Posting photos of your child on-line - is there an unnecessary paedophile paranoia?

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Do you / would you post photos of your child on-line?

I would, absolutely without a moments hesitation - but I have read quite a few opinions of late that are very much the opposite of mine and it’s got the old cobwebby Mammasaurus  mind-cogs  turning…

The great thing about opinions is that we all have them and that we’ll never all agree on every topic. I often form opinions only to read a differing view and it makes me question and reassess my viewpoint. Hopefully that’s a positive thing but I do wonder if it really means I’m just a fickle beast.

I have posted photographs of my children on my blog and seen no reason not to do so personally. If I want to pop up a fun picture one Sunday of my kiddies splashing in the bath then that’s what I’ll do.  But at the same time I appreciate that not everyone would be comfortable with this. And some it seems would be very much against this if reading various mainstream parenting forums are anything to go by.

I find myself wondering if there is a line where our worry turns to panic and paranoia. I recently read

“I’m not putting my child online for any Tom,Dick or Harry to see – I don’t know who these people are looking at my blog – how do I know they aren’t getting some sort of ‘kick’ from my child’s photos?”

And I respect that persons opinion even if it’s quite different to my own. “These people” you refer to are just people, like the people that pass your children in the supermarket, swimming pool and the park every week. The woman sitting opposite us on the bus could be a paedophile but I’m not going to stop leaving the house ‘in case’ she is and ‘in case’ she looks at my child.

Yes there are paedophiles in this world, it’s horrible to think that such people exist but they do. There were paedophiles when we were children and long ,long, long before that. But we played as children out on the pavement in our street, waved at passers-by and generally made mischief and enjoyed childhood.  We were taught ‘stranger danger’ at school and knew ‘not to talk to strangers’. But if we were at the park with our parents and a man was taking photos of his son playing, our parents never used to march over to him and insist that he destroys  the camera film in case  it may contain images that have us in coincidentally  right there and then.

However, that was then and now we have the fancy new all flashing, all dancing age of the internet and all the pros and cons that comes along with it. At least once a month we hear of adults being arrested and charged with storing thousands of indecent images of children – so it’s only natural that we, as parents, worry more and more about the welfare of our children. And we can’t even turn to our own parents to ask ‘What did you do?’

The older generation got by perfectly well not sharing their little ones childhood photos with the world. Then again then got by perfectly well without the internet and that doesn’t mean I’m about to hurl my laptop into the kitchen bin!

When I go to the park with my kiddies these days I don’t even bother taking my camera in case I manage to offend anyone - and I really begrudge feeling that I have to do that! Surely I can’t be the only one?

I really do believe there’s no right or wrong on this subject, it’s a personal choice so feel free to speak your mind – I won’t take offence - much (just kidding!) I look forward to hearing your thoughts on posting photos of your child on your blogs and online in general!