Social media can be a scary place for adults, but for tweens and teen models on Instagram, it can be downright traumatizing. Now some parents who manage their underage models explain that screening their children’s accounts for inappropriate photos and messages can be a full-time job.
The Clarksburg Caller says that between penis pics and vulgar comments, parents or child management must patrol the Instagram accounts of models who are minors. Nicole, the “momager” of an Australian child model, says that her daughter’s account receives “disgusting comments” daily.
Nicole says she monitors everything that gets posted on her child’s social media pages, and particularly the direct messages or “DMs.”
“Monitoring the direct messages is like a full-time job, deleting penis photos, marriage proposals, all sorts of disgusting comments.”
The momager says that there are inappropriate messages sent to her daughter daily, and she decided to speak out against certain other parents and managers who exploit minors for “likes” and not protecting their best interests.
“I’ve seen [moms] at photo shoots and they are the ones who are unbuttoning their 10-year-old daughter’s tops and telling them what to do.”
Nicole says that she has been there at photo shoots and knows of what she speaks.
Nicole says she remembers a time when a photographer talked her into having her daughter pose with her hands covering her naked chest while wearing pigtails, which is something she still regrets.
“I felt sick about it. I ended up telling him that I thought it was inappropriate and the photo has never been shared or published, thankfully.”
Underage models are easy to find on Instagram, and it can be as easy as searching hashtags like #teengirls, #teenmodels or even #teensofinstagram to find children posing.
Another mother who preferred not to use her name says that her 10-year-old daughter has been modeling on Instagram for a year now.
“She got her first modeling gig on Instagram after a New Zealand photographer saw her page.”
Caitlin Roper, an advocate for girls and women, says that posting photos of your minor child on Instagram can be a slippery slope as they are being hunted by predators.
“Do they not understand the implications for their child or do they not care? Is it about fame ahead of their child’s rights and safety?”
British police issued a warning to parents this week after a 10-year-old London girl was targeted through Instagram by an adult male trying to lure her in, says the London Free Press.
The 24-year-old man sent the girl a direct message posing as a 13-year-old girl, asking her if she’d like to model for an Instagram page and asked her for photos of her feet. Luckily, a parent saw the message and called the police which led to a raid of the man’s home where he was arrested for child pornography and “charged with invitation to sexual touching with a person under 16 years of age, two counts of luring a person under 16 years old by telecommunication and unlawfully possessing child pornography.”