My kids will be starting middle school soon, and I want to give them a good edge. Knowing how to find stuff online is the first step, I think. I've heard that you can use Google in ways that aren't well-known…do you know anything about that?
A question MamaBear loves!
Anything that requires kids to actually *think* when researching online warms the cockles of me heart, it surely does.
Yes, there are many many ways you can use Google that mere mortals never consider.
But over here at my MamaBear site, I'd like to delve a wee bit further into this topic as it applies to fellow Mommy/Daddy/parent bloggers and our kids.
The thing I love about Google Circles is that it lets you segregate your network into specific groups (ie, friends, family, fellow moose wranglers, coupon experts, etc.etc.etc.). And yes, I do know that Facebook lets you do the same.
Google Circles makes it super super SUPER easy to message *solely* those people without jumping thru huge amounts of hoops.
This is what sells it for me!
Let's apply this to our niche now, fellow mommy bloggers and our kids.
You caught Mama Bear after she's been awake now since 4am, powerfully hacking up her site to add ever more goodies for you. Today, for example, I just finished adding a new tasty Fitness Store – do feel free to check it out whenever you'd like!
But that's not the topic of today's post, no oh no! Instead, MamaBear insists on asking you this question.
Alrighty then, tell me.
Is content you *need* to know….being withheld not only from you, but your children as well?
I present for your delection: The Internet Filter bubble. Do make sure to watch it in its entirety…it's utterly fascinating.
Is that scary or what?????
Now, for brilliant parents like us, that's one thing. We all have the ability to learn just how to uncover where the news is that we really need.
But…what about our kids?
I'm all for filtering out inappropriate material, of course.
But imagine the following…
What if your teen, when searching on "diversity", gets shown results replete with political correctness *only*?
What if your teen, when searching on "gay", gets shown results that glorify gay-bashing?
What if your teen, when searching on "sex", gets shown results that highlight double-standards?
See what Mama Bear means?
It's one thing for our kids to get messages shoved down their throats by their peers.
It's another thing entirely to have Internet search results mimic those peers!
(derived from the types of links your kid generally clicks on etc.).
So what *are* some of the signals Google uses to determine what kind of content to show?
They could include:
where do we move the mouse and mark text in the search results
amount of typos while searching
how often do we use related search queries
how often do we use autosuggestion
how often do we use spell correction
distribution of short / general queries vs. specific / long tail queries
which other google services do we use (gmail / youtube/ maps / picasa /….)