There’s a new online trend, known as “teen shaming.” It’s where teens post pictures of other teens online and critique them, or add racy or blunt advice.
For example, there’s a Facebook page called “Hey Girls, Did You Know” that’s filled with these photos. One set shows the most annoying “girl poses.” Other photos ridicule the way girls look or dress. There’s also a photo posted with the message: “Hey girls, did you know you’re beautiful – no matter what your Mom says?”
It may sound mean, but so far, that one Facebook page has been “liked” by more than 40-thousand people! Teens say it’s harmless and that they’re just offering good advice to people in general, like the girl holding up a stick of deodorant, and demanding people “Use it!” But some experts say these new teen shaming sites are just another form of cyber-bullying! After all, the sites use real photos, and point out what girls and boys perceive as their flaws and shortcomings. Then, because the photos are being posted on social media, they often go viral, and may be seen by thousands of people.
That’s a problem, because many psychologists and parents worry that these photos could be targeting specific teens – to ridicule, or taunt them. And lawyers agree. They say if a photo directly targets somebody to harass or defame them, then teens are breaking the law. Psychologist and author Dr. Logan Levkoff says that until parents step in, teens will continue to use technology to taunt others. And he says it’s our responsibility to teach young people not to judge anyone else.
So, have you seen these new “teen shaming” sites? Do you find them to be shaming, harmless fun, or actually good advice from one teen to another?