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Why I Should Be Allowed To Have a Facebook Account

By , Santa Clara, CA
Dear Parents,

I would like to sign up for a Facebook account. Facebook.com is a social networking website where I can connect with people I know, online and conveniently. It is completely safe for a mature, 13-year-old. Socialnetworking-weblog.com says, “Facebook has an enormous amount of privacy settings that you can use to keep safe.” You have told me many times that Facebook is not an appropriate website for me right now, but here I will prove you wrong. Many trusted websites and responsible parents have declared Facebook a safe site for teens that use it responsibly. As Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, “In skating over thin ice our safety is in our speed.” Facebook is only dangerous for those who use it without being safe, unlike me, since I have researched various tips on staying safe on Facebook. This is why I need you to give me permission to get a Facebook account.

I understand that you are concerned for my online safety, but there is nothing to be worried about! I have over 50 friends already signed up on Facebook that are under 15, and you have told me yourself that most of them have responsible parents who make wise decisions for their children. One of the features that makes Facebook so safe is that you can block your profile so not even your name will be seen in public. You’ll never have to even think about people finding your Facebook profile online. You can choose what to put up, like your location, etc., since there is very little information that is required. Your profile won’t even show up if people search for your name on Google. If you put something in your profile that you suddenly realize you don’t want everyone to see, with just a click of a button, you can remove it, and it will only be viewable to certain people you select. I won’t mind friending you on Facebook, so you can monitor everything I do. In addition to that, I’ll give you my password. Most teens wouldn’t like having their parents rule over them so much, but it doesn’t matter to me because I’m not planning on doing anything secretive on Facebook. I don’t see how Facebook can be any less secure than email.

There are many uses for Facebook. One, it keeps you happy and makes you feel overall more positive. Glamour.com says, “Facebook is fun, relaxing, and maybe even good for your health! It can zap your stress, it makes you feel like you aren’t the only one, it makes you laugh, and its good clean fun.” Facebook is a place to meet up with friends you don’t keep in touch with. During school, I can only hang out with so many people at one time, since not all of my friends get along well. With Facebook, I can learn new things about people who I wasn’t good friends with before, and have better and closer friendships with them. I have heard adults say many times that spending too much time online causes less face-to-face social contact. However, surveys reported at a conference in 2006 indicate that “Facebook users mostly use it to maintain relationships with people they meet offline.” (Newscientist.com). I used to wonder how a lot of my friends knew so much about each other when they don’t seem to talk very much at school. The answer was Facebook.

Facebook can also be used for more important things, such as homework or an emergency. For example, say I needed to get help on a homework problem. It would take a very long time to call 10 people about homework, and some people wouldn’t pick up their phones. After all the calling, only one or two people would know the answer. A way to solve this problem is to post the question on Facebook, a website you know everyone will look at. Also, if there was a homework question that I understood but it stumped others, I could post it on Facebook to help people out. You might say, “Well, why don’t you just email your friends?” The thing is, not many people check their emails at all, and even those who do only check once a day. By the time someone read the email about the homework question, it would probably be too late. For something urgent, Facebook is the best option because you can get information and questions out quickly.

Facebook is one of those things that lasts as long as you want, since you can close your account whenever you feel like it. It will never give you computer viruses, as do websites such as www.myspace.com. You may have heard of peoples’ accounts and personal information getting hacked into. Most of these problems stem from the email address itself, where someone got into your email and found a Facebook email. One of the most popular hacks is a fake Facebook login page. If you are smart, you know how to avoid these problems. Now, I know that there may be other people who don’t use Facebook very responsibly, and these people may be some of my friends. Therefore, I will do one of two things: I will either talk to them in person before friending them to make sure that they won’t do anything with my pictures, and if they don’t, then I won’t be friends with them on Facebook. You might say, “What if you trust her now, but she uses your pictures inappropriately later, when she’s an adult?” A solution is to put a minimum amount of photos online. This risk comes with many things, such as emailing pictures, being in a yearbook, etc., and Facebook is really no different.

Facebook is a necessity for me, as it is for the rest of the world who uses it. It has innumerable privacy settings, and the account-holder can be even safer by using the picture-posting feature responsibly, and not putting too much personal information out there. When one has a Facebook account, they have to remember to not put anything online that they wouldn’t feel comfortable announcing to the world. You may say that Facebook is not safe for everyone, with which I agree. But for a responsible girl like me, I say that I can handle it. For these reasons, I am requesting you to allow me to create my own Facebook account.




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This article has 24 comments. Post your own!

Sarbear This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Apr. 5, 2010 at 6:49 pm:

this is impressive! i like how you pulled in others' arguments against you and limited arguments that could have been made by your parents. this is, overall, VERY well written, and you sounded professional and responsible the way you requested an account. check out some of my work too :)

 

ps. did your parents allow you to create an account?

 
kfrog575 replied...
Apr. 9, 2010 at 10:48 pm :

thanks! i'll look at your work when i have time! :)

unfortunately, i didn't get an account. But my parents did say that i could check with them later!

 
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Mary W. said...
Mar. 21, 2010 at 11:10 pm:
gooooo kk ;D
 
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magic-esi This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Mar. 20, 2010 at 9:41 am:
This is really impressive. Most assignments for school come out sounding bland and boring, but this is very persuasive and I'm sure that any parent who reads this would likely let their kid onto Facebook. You have a great writing style and I enjoyed reading this essay.
 
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jumpstart said...
Mar. 18, 2010 at 9:30 pm:
Powerful message and I endorse it!
 
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