Instagram beauty contests worry parents, child privacy advocates

The photo-sharing site Instagram has become wildly popular as a way to trade pictures of pets and friends. But a new trend on the site is making parents cringe: beauty pageants, in which thousands of young girls — many appearing no older than 12 or 13 — submit photographs of themselves for others to judge.

In one case, the mug shots of four girls, middle-school-age or younger, have been pitted against each other. One is all dimples, wearing a hair bow and a big, toothy grin. Another is trying out a pensive, sultry look.

I posted this article after reading a different post our blog about young teens post inappropriate pictures on instagram. Although not illegal like the other article its quite possible that this article has dangerous potential. Beauty pageants have come into the light and im sure we all have seen some TLC special of the emotional stress of these events can cause and thats just being in them not even talking about losing. the article provides several examples of the how these contests aren’t heart warming environments and emotional battlegrounds for young teens

“Any of Instagram’s 30 million users can vote on the appearance of the girls in a comments section of the post. Once a girl’s photo receives a certain number of negative remarks, the pageant host, who can remain anonymous, can update it with a big red X or the word “OUT” scratched across her face.”

“U.G.L.Y,” wrote one user about a girl, who submitted her photo to one of the pageants identified on Instagram by the keyword “#beautycontest.”

PS the article has a second page so dont forget to read it

The article here

Kevin Mclaughlin

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3 thoughts on “Instagram beauty contests worry parents, child privacy advocates

  1. Today I was “instagram surfing” as one picture led to another, I found myself looking at old cheerleading teams that I used to compete against. I was in shock when I saw the same thing, young girls about 13-15 were having their own “cheerleader of the month” contests. One girl made up her own rules and with in a blink of an eye cheerleaders from all over was submitting pictures. Some of the girls were in their team uniforms. Just like these pageant competitions these contest are not good news and can be dangerous. Today was the first time I saw anything like that on instagram but after reading this article I guess it’s a bigger issue then I thought.

  2. I read an article about this today also, and couldn’t believe it ( http://www.huffingtonpost.com/hollee-becker/beauty-is-only-skin-deep-instagram-is-to-the-bone_b_2994360.html ) and in that one the writer as a mother of a tween aged girl discusses how she went on her daughter’s account and posted a photo that said “Beauty is Skin Deep” and in the description urged other girls to stop beauty pageants. Quickly the daughter’s news feed started showing positive and inspirational photos sharing the hashtag #stopbeautypageants. She talked about how important it is for parents to talk to their kids about the effect of their actions online and the permanence of the photos. The identifying information like geotagging and school uniforms showing school names is really concerning.
    -Jordan Moore

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