Parents, it seems, are always two steps behind kids and their vast knowledge of the Interwebs and those computery machine things they're always looking at.
While you may not be able to tell the difference between pins, pokes, tweets, and diggs, your children probably do. And some of them are using your ignorance to do illegal things behind your back.
As an early Mother's Day gift to all the Luddite moms out there, here are five things that tech-savvy kids are getting in trouble for, that you may not even know about:
- Texting while driving. California prohibits texting while driving. Your pre-arthritic teen might seem like a lost cause who's addicted to email, texts, and instant messages -- but don't lose hope. In a twist of tech irony, if you want to block your teen's texts while driving, there are apps for that!
- Cyberbullying. From fake Facebook pages and embarrassing photos to disturbing videos and e-mailed threats, online harassment has become a sad reality for children in the digital age. Kids can be cruel, but parents can be vigilant. Whether your kid is the target or the bully, be the mama bear and do your part to prevent cyberbullying.
- Gaming the online prescription pill world. The Internet is full of drug distribution schemes that you might not know about. Many kids realize how easy it is to get meds online without a prescription. Using drugs like Prozac, Vicodin or Adderral without being seen by a doctor is dangerous and illegal.
- Illegally downloading music and movies. Back in the day, it was Napster. Today, it's BitTorrent. But the rule hasn't changed: You can't use a file-sharing website to download copyrighted movies or music.
- Online gambling. If you've noticed a change in how aggressively your kid plays a round of Go Fish, you might want to have a talk with him. Jokes aside, youth gambling is a problem for some, and it's illegal.
If your child gets caught doing something unlawful, you'll want to learn more about how the juvenile justice system works in California. It may also be wise to have an experienced Los Angeles criminal defense lawyer on your side.
- Cyberbullying Held not Protected Speech in CA Civil Suit (FindLaw's Injured)
- California OKs Hands-Free Texting for Drivers (FindLaw's Injured)
- Court Weighs Teen Sexting and Child Pornography Charges (FindLaw's Blotter)
- 'Anti-Sexting' Technology Patented by Apple (FindLaw's Blotter)