With the advent of mobile phones and its subsequent popularity among kids and teenagers, many worried parents feel it is necessary to install tracking software and apps on their phones. However this raises questions on an individual’s right to privacy and how that relates to one’s age.
For young children, tracking is very appropriate and helpful. You can be alerted when they get on the bus, arrive to school, etc. But for teens, a few questions rise.
Putting a strain on parent – child relations
Studies have shown that constant monitoring and controlling behaviour harms a child emotional state. Feeling that you are constantly being watched can develop confidence and anxiety issues. It can also make a social life borderline impossible and propagate an overwhelming state of loneliness. All these negative emotions can make a relationship that should stand the test of time itself, fall apart. The mere presence of these apps suggests that parents don’t have trust in their children. And when a child truly needs help, they may not seek their parents for counsel, but instead bad figures and bad “options” .
Mistakes will be made
Part of growing up is making stupid mistakes. That is just the way life is. Any person probably makes more mistakes than actual good decisions. By imposing what is essentially unconsented spy software, you are limiting an individuals experience of life. And consequently limiting proper emotional development. Additionally, it is important to take risks in life stupid or not, a child will eventually learn which are wise to take and which are not. By preserving some ideal notion of innocence of your child you are doing more harm than good, and making them weaker as a private individual as a result of it.
Many might agree with the idea that parent-child relations are one directional and kids don’t have much room to introduce their ideas on how their relationship should be. Granted, a child is a child and therefore should be treated as a child, but as they grow up and become teens that line can become a little bit fuzzy. Perhaps where consent is more important. Some may argue they have a right to dictate when they are being tracked. Many apps like life360, when location tracking is disabled, parents are alerted. And many anecdotes presented on apps like TikTok highlight the chaos that is sure to come.
All things considered, tracking can be a very useful tool for ensuring a child’s safety. And when done properly, can be an effective tool for protecting kids, and getting the help they need in times of emergency. But still, this must be done properlly.
Where Knomi is better than tracking apps
While apps like Life360 are a piece of software, and go everywhere your phone goes, making it seem inescapable, Knomi is a device. A device purpose built for personal safety. It lasts 6 months so you don’t even have to worry about. And in an emergency you can quickly press a panic button alerting caretakers. You can wear it around your neck, put in your pocket, put it in your backpack. And if a teen really wants to go live life, and make mistakes, and make friends, and lose friends, and seek the meaning of life, they can leave their device somewhere, pick it up later. With this device, a relationship based on trust can be fostered as a child understands that their safety is important to their parents, and as a parent understands fun is important to their kids. And when teens begin to drive, they can put the device in their cupholder. Regardless, it hits all the point aforementioned… and one more.
Smart features and cost
Many apps have speeding alerts, geofences, and the sort. But they also come with hefty prices. Knomi, combined with future application updates, will provide a plethora of similar and better features, and at a lower cost. Life360 costs $70 per year for an app. Knomi costs $5 per month for a device with near global coverage and is completely independent of a phone. Couple the Life360 cost with a monthly phone bill, and Knomi begins to make a lot more sense.