Blocking/Monitoring Methods & Safety resources

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mommy3
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Blocking/Monitoring Methods & Safety resources

Please share any experiences good or bad you've had with any type of methods of blocking or monitoring various types of media (online games, youtube, netflix, websites, etc).  I get asked this question often by parents and have not had the need to use such a program or device/modem? so I would REALLY LOVE some input, please! Thank you!

EDIT

For links to online safety resources see this thread below

http://www.olganon.org/forum/i-need-help-parents-gamers-open-forum/internet-safety-resources-parents-and-teachers

 

Lisa3333
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Hi Mommy!  Time Warner

Hi Mommy! Time Warner Cable Internet allows you to block through parental controls websites including youtube, itunes, netflix and any website you select. It does not allow you to block downloaded applications such as games or chat programs (like Messenger or skype). I think it may also allow you to set a timer. Most internet companies will walk you through their parental controls as well as tell you what programs you can install to block games and chat programs.

Hugs, Lisa Video game free since 4/17/2014

Reddog
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I've heard good things about

I've heard good things about Safe Eyes from McAfee. It is pretty robust allowing you to block and monitor including online games.

"Yesterday is History, Tomorrow a Mystery, Today is a Gift, Thats why it's called the Present"

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I only know two of them-

I only know two of them- PCWebControl and K9- I'm thinkin about use the first one cause it's really easy to manage and it'll be a nice choice for me.

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Here is some information

Here is some information about different methods that I shared in a different post:

http://www.olganon.org/forum/i-need-help-parents-gamers-open-forum/internet-safety-resources-parents-and-teachers

An important consideration is to keep computers and smartphones out of the bedrooms and allow their use ONLY in common areas such as the living room or kitchen. Another suggestion is to have a NIGHT LOCATION for phones and other electronics, where your child places his/her phone or device at a set time each night. This means that sleep isn't interrupted by gaming or text messages or the compelling temptation to communicate using social media or to late-night surf or play games.

Don't be afraid to ask questions, ask to see their gaming stats or social media or better yet have them "friend" you.

Internet Safety

With the ever-increasing changes in technology, it sometimes feels like an overwhelming task

to keep up! Below are some excellent resources and information for how to keep children safe:

Internet Safety Resources for Parents and Guardians

NetSmartz.org

Cyberbullying Research Center

National Crime Prevention Council - Internet Safety

FBI - A Parent's Guide to Internet Safety

Family Online Safety Institute

iKeepSafe

Liz Woolley

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Here is another one: Note

Here is another one:

Note from a parent seeking help for her 13 year old:

I have enrolled today in covenanteyes.com, a filtering service and accountability service for our kids. It gives us the option of blocking social medias (Facebook, etc) and games, which we will do, and also reports on game activity. I have notified his friends' parents that we are now a game-free home.

covenanteyes.com

Liz Woolley

mommy3
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Thank you for the

Thank you for the suggestions that I can share with other parents. Keeping electronics out of the bedroom and out of reach through the evening and sleeptime hours is a great idea. My daughter, though, uses facetime to study with friends which makes for an added challenge. With all the homework HS kids have these days it's not uncommon for them to be up late especially after sports practices and afterschool jobs. Not easy...

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I was reading an article 

I was reading an article about using your own router to block certain sites.

http://www.groovypost.com/howto/free-parental-control-net-monitoring-net...

I have a really old ADSL modem router that can block sites, restrict internet connection time or just log and email you whenevercertain sites are accessed if that is what you chose. It's just setting them up right that takes an effort.

I would recommened that all parents at least learn how to change the default router password or the kids may get there before you do and take control before you can.

Its also possible for them to reset routers if they know how, and the use of mobile technology adds another dimension. Nothing is foolproof!

Keep all computers in a public area; no computers in bedrooms is key.

INFO

Parent's online meeting THURSDAY 9pmEST/EDT click here

Online meetings gaming addicts click here

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Parents of addicts click here for advice

Help for video game addicts click here

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Polga
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Tommi also wrote this on

Tommi also wrote this on another thread which I think is also very good advice

Tommi wrote:

I think that for many parents there is an element of fear and pennywise pound foolishness at work here.

It is pretty well known that for many parents today, their children can run rings around them technologically. This means they are fearful and uncertain how to step in and take control of the technology.

Which leads me to the second point: parents who do not have the knowledge to properly block and filter can easily find the help they need for less than a couple of hundred $$ EUEU PSPSs. There are thousands of people running home businesses helping people manage their home pcs and networks.

Anyone who runs a service for helping manage home PCs can set up a good block and filtering system.

Better to spend a few hundred now than months of expensive rehab, wasted college education, etc down the road.

INFO

Parent's online meeting THURSDAY 9pmEST/EDT click here

Online meetings gaming addicts click here

Spouses/SO's of addicts advice here

Parents of addicts click here for advice

Help for video game addicts click here

Please help! Donate here

Polga
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Consider what software is on

Consider what software is on your computer already.

On my own laptop which runs on microsoft Vista there is parental control software already on there. I have the only administrator account on the machine (password protected) and can control and create new user accounts for other people. You can create new accounts, via the control panel under user accounts, click "manage another account" then "create a new account", and do it as a "standard user". You can set the password for the account so they have to come to you every time. Once your child has his own user name account you can control what times they can log on and block certain sites and also parental controls will report their most popular 10 sites to you. You can stop downloads if desired. There is also a gaming block but I don't know how well that works.

So if your child has his own computer, you can still be have the administrator account (password protected) and limit what they do on their own computer using software that is there already. If they are not the administrator this stops them installing other software also.

It's probably possible that a kid can hack around this if they try hard enough.

INFO

Parent's online meeting THURSDAY 9pmEST/EDT click here

Online meetings gaming addicts click here

Spouses/SO's of addicts advice here

Parents of addicts click here for advice

Help for video game addicts click here

Please help! Donate here

mommy3
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I set myself up as admin on

I set myself up as admin on my own laptop and set up an account for my son so he could only access a few areas. Since going game-free he usually asks to use my laptop (is growing up, thankfully), but I was out and he needed immediate internet access while on vacation in order to do a job for a client. He admitted to me when I returned that he had hacked into my computer. With the combination of a few keys he was able to bring up some kind of programing language on my Apple laptop in order to get in. He showed me what looked like greek to me. I was shocked. I'm so lost when it comes to this stuff. Hopefully "parents of today" will be better suited to handle such things!

Thanks for your input Polga! I'm sure this method can work until kids get to a certain age. My son was already reading books on hacking checked out from the city library in Middle School. I suspect he will do great things some day and save us all from some potentially disastrous cyber event. Let's hope!

TwoFace
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Please dont control your

Please dont control your Kids too mutch. I can guarantee you that it will back fire. You need to teach your Kid how to use these things and not put a Program on his Pc and think your Parenting is done. You need to teach your Kids a responsible way of using technology instead of restricting and blocking it. It is usual for Teenagers to find things that are illegal or restricted very interesting and believe me they will find a way to disable the restrictions just because they can. Please teach them instead of restricting. Let them have experiences work with them talk to them involve them in the Topic.

Thanks you

Sinceriely a Teenager that has enough experience

Benni

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Hi Benny, I understand your

Hi Benny,

I understand your point of view, and this depends very much on the age of child and the circumstances.

Here is an example: would you think a parent is being responsible by driving their 12 year old across town and leaving them alone in a gaming arcade for several hours? This is what parents are doing when they let children play Minecraft over the internet, unsupervised.

Another example (which I have heard many times repeated here) of a 20+ plus year old child who spends all day gaming, refuses to get a job or go to school, and lives with their parents and is supported by them. In this case I think it 'my house, my rules' should apply where the condition for the child staying is no gaming and possibly no internet.

One further analogy, of course I cannot prevent my minor child from getting a bottle of liquor from their friends and getting drunk. This happens to many parents. However, I would not recommend parents serving wine, beer and schnapps to their children every night.

I recommend strong parental controls under the following conditions:
- young children (under 16) to protect against unlimited internet, porn sites etc, use
- in the case of older or adult children who are clearly addicted and all efforts at moderation have failed.

Olga/non member since Dec. 2008 Check out my latest video on Gaming Addiction and public awareness https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g-6JZLnQ29o

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Hey Tommi, about your first

Hey Tommi,

about your first Example: I was talking about teaching your Kids how to use Technology Appropriatly. There is a high chance of your Kid wanting to play Minecraft with his Friends at some point and i want parents that instead of sitting behind your Children when he plays the Parents could for example organize a private Minecraft server for the few friends to play on, invite them to the House with their Laptops to play together in the same room instead of over the Internet. Otherwise if you dont let your Child play Minecraft at all of 30 minutes a day he will probably go to a Friends house whose Parents let him play more and play there all day. Trust me ive done it when i was 13. My Mum realised what was happening and i got a Laptop for my Birthday and my 4 friends from school put our money together and rented ourselves a minecraft server on wich we played on. But one thing that did not happen wich was one of the Reasons why i got addicted later on in my life is because the Parents dont talk to their kids and dont talk to other Parents. For example i started playing 1-2 hours a day but one of my friends was allowed to play 4 hours a day wich is really frustrating and you feel bad if somebody is allowed to play more or go to bed later. I want to encourage Parents to talk to their friends parents to synchronize their Kids allowed play times let them manage their times and be strict with it. Maybe make a meeting with your son and his friends+parents and discuss how mutch time they are allowed to play.

The next example if your Son/Daughter is already 18+ it is your house ofcourse its your rules you can put them on the street they are old enough. I dont care about restricting 18+ year old people because they are able to move out and make their own rules.

About the liquor example: I am from germany so i can legally drink beer as a 16 year old. I can already tell you that we have less drunk teenagers than the us has. Its simple if something is illegal or the parents try to keep it away from their child it will most likely find a interest in it (same works with gaming) instead of hiding alcohol from your kids and acting like it was the worst thing on earth you should talk to your Kids about Alcohol discuss the topic and teach them about it. My mum gave me a sip of beer to try when i was like 12 and i didnt like it and i didnt drink a drop of beer since then simply because my mum tought me about it at an early age and it wasnt something cool and forbidden for me.

Well about your conditions: I am 100% on the same side as you when it comes to the second condition. Now the the first one. Lets start with the Porn sites. I can promise you that almost every boy at has watched atleast 1 porn clip at the age of 13-14. You cant control it either he might have a ipod or go to a friend that doesnt have a anti porn program on his pc or whatever. Again you can trust me on that because i have enough experience in that topic. Some kids might even google all night to work around the child protection Programm. You cant stop your Child from watching porn by restricting it. Danmark for example is discussing showing porn clips in schools to teach them about it and that it doesnt represent the real sex life. That is how you stop Teenagers from watching too many Porn Videos (even though i am not sure if that even exists) your child will not have the urge to watch them if you teach them about sex in the first place. Thats so funny about america where you have states that are not allowed to talk about condoms and they have the highest Teen Pregnency rates. In germany we learn a lot about sex at the age of 12 they start off slowly with fun metaphors and now at age of 16 they show us real pictures and show us everything we need to know. But remember no matter what if you have a son there is no way he will not watch porn clips and i see no problem with that. Instead of restricting your Childs Internet acces you should teach him about managing it himself (ofcouse when you see that he cant manage it for himself after trying to teach him you should go to restricting but please talk to your child about it). What my mum did when i went to bed late and we were fighting because i didnt go to bed when i should she said ok go to bed when you want (i had school the next day, but no test) and i was so tired that i never went to bed too late again. Let them have their experiences they learn from them.

Greetings Benni

mommy3
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Talking "things" over with

Talking "things" over with our kids is always a good idea. I'm sure they listen, but they don't always respond favorably-not suprisingly. Twoface-sounds as though you may be more responsible than many your age. If we had that more compliant kid, we probably wouldn't be on this site. By the time moms "get here" their kid is usually in a rather bad place. Desperate times call for desperate measures.

Parents need to get children accustomed to limits on technology from a very early age. Many of us moms with 20 somethings didn't realize back then the potential of this addiction.

Thanks for sharing guys! You both make excellent points!

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I agree mostly with what you

I agree mostly with what you have said Benni.

Please do not confuse me with an American, where I agree, some of the rules and customs I find hard to understand.

My children were raised in the Netherlands, one child with beer and wine at 16 and the other two children had to wait until 18 because they raised the age a few years ago (which I agree with - 18 is a good age). And where weed is legal at 18 (and cigarettes). This also makes sense to me.

None of my children have become alcoholics or use weed very much, but my son now 17, is game addicted (COD). Because of this he failed Gymnasium and is now in a Voorbereidend middelbaar beroepsonderwijs (preparatory middle level vocational education).

Parents cannot control children. But they must monitor them (take the time to do so and learn technology). And educate them along with schools and society.

I believe a lot of problems concerning game addicted kids come
a) from parents having no clue about what games and how much computer time is appropriate at what age (the government and society should work harder to educate parents.) For example parents buying 10 year olds GTA (yes I have seen that).
b) parents who use games as an electronic nanny.

My last point is that great parents can have problem kids and poor parents can have great kids. The nature of addiction is that sadly, it strikes a percentage of the population for whatever reason. And if your child turns out to be an addict (games, weed, meth, etc) it can be very difficult and then strong measures (including in-patient rehab clinics) may be the only choice.

Olga/non member since Dec. 2008 Check out my latest video on Gaming Addiction and public awareness https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g-6JZLnQ29o

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This is the program I used on

This is the program I used on my 19 year old nephew, he's now working instead of gaming almost 19 hours a day. Here's the link to download a demo. HT Parental Controls http://hidetools.com/parental-controls.html

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Open DNS and League of legends (LoL)

Hi,

I'm new to this forum, it looks great! 

I have a 16 year old son who is really hooked on League of Legends.  He's showing many signs of addiction and we're thinking of getting professional help.  Unchecked he has played 8 hours non-stop and even came back the next morning and skipped two classes to play more.  So we've become much more strict about access to the internet and LoL. 

First he does not have his own computer because of this behavior. We know about his online behavior from spyware installed on the desktop which allow us to see what he does and for how long.    (He needs a computer for homework that he but he's very defiant and non-compliant so we're chewing on this one.)

We have found one very useful tool for blocking websites, Open DNS.  My IT guy at work told me about it.  It's a free service that works from your router so that all internet traffic on your network is filtered, that means all WiFi and wired devices (even iPods etc).  Basically you change some settings in your router so that all websites are compared to a crowd-sourced database and filtered to the level you select.  The filter is accessable from the web so you can change settings remotely (i.e. from work).   Works great for online games and porn, social media etc.  

I'd like to hear from anyone else about experiences with League of Legends, Open DNS or getting professional help for a 16 year old gaming addict.  

Thanks

Ticker

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League and 16 Year olds

Hey Ticker,

im 16 Years old too and i played a lot of LoL in my life already. I actually stopped playing it because i always lost because of my Team and french players that just leave the game and never come back. He probably has some online Friends he plays with as a Team otherwise it wouldnt be fun. He is 16 Years old and the best thing you could do is try to get him to go out with friends in the evenings go party etc. you could try calling a old friend of him who doesnt play if you know anybody who would be able to drag him out and show him the real world. (Especially Girls :P)

Greetings Benni

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Smart phones / Cell phones used as secret modems

I just wanted to give parents the heads-up that there are many distractions on smart phones so if you are banning games in your home you also need to address access to smart phones in your home; including your kids taking advantage of your own phone when your back is turned.

In case you did not realise, many smart phones can now act as a wifi hotspot for any wifi enabled laptop or other device. In other words, they become a wire free internet modem ( Google "tethering" )

For example, your child (adult or minor) may access your smart phone (or their own) and enable it for wifi transmission so it becomes an internet modem operating without wires and transmitting and receiving to any enabled device close enough that has access to the password created. So your kids can use that old laptop you may have left around to access the internet and games in secret when the boradband has been turned off and removed. The internet service may not be as good as broadband but they will still be getting their fix.

INFO

Parent's online meeting THURSDAY 9pmEST/EDT click here

Online meetings gaming addicts click here

Spouses/SO's of addicts advice here

Parents of addicts click here for advice

Help for video game addicts click here

Please help! Donate here

Andrew_Doan
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Polga, excellent points about smartphones!

This is why we give our 18 y.o. son and 16 y.o. daughter FLIP PHONES without Internet access!

Andrew Doan MD PhD

My Videos: Internet gaming disorder is real & my story 

*The views expressed are of the author's and do not necessarily reflect the official policy of the U.S. Navy or Department of Defense.

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Online Game Filtering for a Mac Airbook

 

I have been looking for filtering software for a Mac (Airbook).  Based on the software I have tried, I can't find anything that will work.

I have tried Net Nanny, Safe Eyes, and K9.  Some have software that blocks online games for the PC, but none for the Mac.

Has anybody found software for the Mac that works well in filtering out online games?

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Hi Maus

Hi Maus

I thought that Mac's were good if you set the parental controls before you give the device to the child ? I recommend you go to an Apple store to get them to show you how.

INFO

Parent's online meeting THURSDAY 9pmEST/EDT click here

Online meetings gaming addicts click here

Spouses/SO's of addicts advice here

Parents of addicts click here for advice

Help for video game addicts click here

Please help! Donate here

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I am not a techy person and

I am not a techy person and have only recently discovered how to manage the internet in the home via the router. How I wish I had known about this years ago!   By logging onto my Netgear router account, either via computer or an App,  I can see all devices using the internet on the account. The administrator (you) can set filtering levels for content, block certain devices, and  change the password remotely.  If you don't have the box or instructions for your router, you should be able to get the necessary information on the bottom of the router itself. 

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Hi kielpaca

Hi kielpaca

This is useful information to parents. Thanks for contributing !

Our kids are often one step ahead of us. Sometime they may have obtained that information and changed the passwords without our say-so !

INFO

Parent's online meeting THURSDAY 9pmEST/EDT click here

Online meetings gaming addicts click here

Spouses/SO's of addicts advice here

Parents of addicts click here for advice

Help for video game addicts click here

Please help! Donate here

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Thank you for the welcome!

Thank you for the welcome! Yes, kids are usually five steps ahead! I have been outsmarted many times. It seems like the drive to get the video game fix is relentless and without scruples.

 With my router, the only way to get in and change the wi-fi password is via the app on my phone. (I keep my phone on me at all times, and my kids don't use it or have the password for it. )  Within the app you can also set up a guest account.  The guest account can be shut  off  at the flip of a switch from your phone. I use the main wi-fi when I need it, and turn the guest account on for the kids on a limited basis when I can monitor. 

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