As parents, we’ve all had to resist the urge to chuck our kid’s phone out a window at some point.
Between text messaging, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, and Facebook, they’re more “connected” than ever (e.g. barely recognizable without a phone pressed to their face).
Luckily, it’s all just innocuous fun most of the time. However, there is a darker side to texting and social media.
In many news stories involving cases of abuse, you’ll notice it’s social media or text messaging being used to solicit the minor. The prevalence of this common denominator in player solicitation and abuse, by itself, is reason enough to not allow any texting/messaging/social media exchanges between the coaches and the kids/athletes.
Allowing coaches to contact minors through these methods is asking for trouble.
If a coach can not discuss the matter publicly, it needs to be brought to the parents’ attention immediately. Be sure to talk to your kids about proper contact on social media.
Here are some social media tips that you or any organization can implement:
Having strict contact rules in place, in addition to educating parents and players to know that such contact is inappropriate and must be reported immediately, is key to mitigating any potential problems that may arise. All coaches who fail to comply or say they “always” have connected with players in this manner should be removed.
Josh and his team are available to answer your questions and provide an expert, objective review of your organization's current risk management program.