Hi guys! I've been putting off this blog in particular, because other topics had captured my attention. But today, my friends, is the day you finally get to receive my personal thoughts as well as a general how-to on being safe online: moreso here on Fandom!
Why We Need Safety
- I already covered in a previous blog about why we need COPPA, but why do we need safety online? Well, for those of you who read my COPPA blog, I elaborated on the fact that nobody is safe on the internet. You never quite know if the people you're befriending are the people you believe and know them to be. There have been many cases in history where people have found themselves in very bad situations (for the sake and of the nature of this blog, I will not detail further), solely because they met up with somebody who wasn't what they claimed. We need to advocate for ourselves if we believe we might end up in a situation such as that.
How to Be Safe
- I figured I'd lay out a couple of tips on how to maintain safety online. I'm fully aware that there are a ton more, but these are umbrella categorized, essentially.
- Do not give out your real name- Very few people on Wikia (after over five years of friendship) have my name, and that's after several video/voice calls in which I've verified the person they are. I would highly advise against sharing anything beyond your first name, because names are a one-way ticket for a stalker, if you are not cautious.
- Addresses are a no-go- Do not give your address out willy-nilly. Just don't. Don't even consider it, because if somebody is devoted enough (some people are), they might as well show up at your door. I don't even tell people the town I live in, just a big city that somebody can get lost in, assuming they try to find me.
- Be mindful of how you present yourself- In a sense, I'm referring to age here. I present myself as a semi-childish person at times, when in reality, I'm older than that. Present yourself in a way that people won't have any desire to stalk or follow you, while maintaining a balance of being who you are in chat.
Trust vs. Safety
- Trusting somebody does not mean you should give them your immediate details. I struggled with this debate for a long time, many years ago, because I thought some people were my friends, so of course I'd share my details! As time has gone on, I've realized that there's very few people I trust, and even fewer I'm willing to give my details to. Surround yourself with people who want the best for you, but don't expect anything that might seem out of malice on their behalf. There is a difference between trusting somebody as a friend and trusting somebody online with your details.
- Be safe online. Do not let yourself be captivated by the wrong people.