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[child] Outing my daughter on the Internet - Lakeshore — LiveJournal
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Jay Lake
Date: 2013-01-21 05:17
Subject: [child] Outing my daughter on the Internet
Security: Public
Tags:child, family, tech
As a friend of mine pointed out that this past Wednesday was the first time I had ever referred to [info]the_child by her full name on my blog. [ jlake.com | LiveJournal ] They asked if I had intentionally planned her online coming out, so to speak.

Well, in a word, no.

I've been talking about her online since my first blogging efforts about ten years ago. Early on, I was on Speculations, then JournalScape and Blogger, before moving to LiveJournal in July of 2004, and later, a WordPress blog on my own domain. Only those last two are still active, with 99% common content between them. I'm not sure when I first began using the monicker of [info]the_child, but I first started using that as a LiveJournal handle in 2006.

All this time, I've been very protective of her online identity and her personal privacy. She will have to live with the trail of mentions I've made all her life. So I've been careful only to tell funny or informative stories about her, not embarrass her online (beyond the usual "Oh, Dad…!"), not to publish her art or photography without permission, only to quote her when she agrees, and so forth. In other words, I've long worked to enable her own control of her online identity, with considerable pre-editing of choices for her when she was younger.

In the same vein, her mother and I let her go onto Facebook under her own name when she was aged 12. Even then, we kept her account as locked down as possible under Facebook's privacy settings. Those have since been slowly relaxed as she becomes more mature and sophisticated.

We've always been very conscious of the meaning of her online footprint. What she does with it from here is up to her, but I know my daughter has been smart so far. We never did have a plan for outing her by name on the Internet at a certain age, or in context with a certain event. Nonetheless, Bronwyn Lake now has a public presence in her own name.

And I'm okay with that.

Love you, kid.

Post A Comment | 10 Comments | | Link

Elizabeth Coleman
User: criada
Date: 2013-01-21 15:19 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
She needs a Virtual Debutante Ball!
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User: dionysus1999
Date: 2013-01-21 17:08 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
It's been a privilege to watch her grow up through the snippets of her life you've posted, Jay.
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Kevin Standlee
User: kevin_standlee
Date: 2013-01-21 17:08 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I've been mightily impressed with her from the first day I met her. She's a great kid.
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User: joycemocha
Date: 2013-01-21 17:23 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Balancing privacy and all is a significant concern for parents, that's for sure.

Nonetheless, Bronwyn is an amazing kid, and I feel honored to know her.
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zxhrue: nuisance
User: zxhrue
Date: 2013-01-21 17:39 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)

your and the child's privacy management has been _very_ good...however, astute readers of your blog should have gotten a clue by the (awesome!) christmas cards images you posted end of last year. and maybe even earlier, from similar art postings.
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Jay Lake: graffiti-shirley_you_jest
User: jaylake
Date: 2013-01-21 17:44 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I won't pretend it isn't possible to have sniffed her out long ago with sufficient effort, just that we've been as careful as we reasonably can be. (I treat my home address the same way, which is why I use a PO Box for 99% of my lettermail.)
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User: martianmooncrab
Date: 2013-01-21 20:48 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
My Dad used to call me Kid. I miss that.
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User: anghara
Date: 2013-01-21 22:27 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Welcome to the Cyberworld in your own unique person, Bronwyn.
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User: fledgist
Date: 2013-01-22 02:13 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I'd say you've done a great job, Jay.
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Brother Flaming Sword of Moderation: Showtime!
User: johno
Date: 2013-01-22 04:27 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I met and chatted with Bronwyn at the Reno Worldcon.

She struck me as a very intelligent, mature and very self possessed person. I had not known her age already, I would have guessed her to be in her late teens or early twenties.

The "young teen" behavior was when I mentioned your LJ name for her, which got me a grand eye roll. {grin}

So aside from a couple of protective parents electing to start lowering the shields,, how much of the decision was her choice? Or due to pressure from her to be turned loose on the net.
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