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Grooming Them Young – A Social Network with Training Wheels

For all you professionals holding out, here’s yet another indication that social networking is here to stay. Users are becoming interested earlier and starting younger, and there’s now a site, similar to Facebook, that caters to six- to- 10-year-olds.  Togetherville was launched as a way for children to mimic their parents’ communication styles.  While under the wing of mom and dad and keeping a similar model to Facebook’s (likely what the kids will “graduate” to), children can have a network of “friends,” update their “status” (from a list of options) and play interactive games.  It’s a model that’s built upon safe communication and parent management, and it’s already generating a fair amount of buzz.

 This is yet another indicator that social networking will continue to dominate how we interact with our peer groups. Granted, children this young likely won’t be using it to get their daily news feeds or for event planning or job searching, but they will become very familiar with networks as a way to communicate.  And they will be just THAT MUCH MORE sophisticated with social networking use once they hit the professional world.

 –        Melinda Hepp

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