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All Together…Finally: Togetherville Brings Your Younglings to the Social Network Table

A new social network has popped up.  No, don’t roll your eyes, as you attempt to convey your annoyance and fatigue with yet another crop of newcomers trying to dethrone the security-free king, Facebook.  This one aims to do something much more ambitious than usurp Facebook.  It’s trying to indoctrinate your children!

Copyright 2010 Togetherville

Well, not really.  In fact, Togetherville (still in Beta) has created a mission to help your children aged 6-13 make quality, informed decisions about how they represent themselves online.  It’s no longer a question of if you let your child communicate online, it’s now a question of how.

It’s amazing how far the Internet has come.  It used to be we were all fearful of the one-way communication that would feed itself into our children’s brains as they were assaulted by inappropriate images, text, and videos.  We’ve come to get a grasp on that, and how to handle it.  Now, the new big-bad is the two-way communication.  Why would I ever let my child post their name on-line?  Why would I ever let them post anything personal (even as benign as “Had fun in PE today!”) on-line?  You know what I’m going to say…they will do it, even if you don’t let them.

Copyright 2010 Togetherville

With that in mind, Togetherville has come on to the scene to help you fuse your obsession with Facebook and your child’s longing to be a part of this new — and not-going-anywhere-ever — society of communication (not necessarily Facebook, but the social network scene as a whole).

You login with your Facebook username/password, and attach Togetherville to your account much like you would with other Facebook apps.  Once you’ve done that, you add your child (first name only), and they now have access to Togetherville’s social network.  It looks a lot like Facebook, but with some major security differences.

First, you have complete and total control over who can be your child’s “friend.”  You can add family and friends directly from your Facebook account, or add in kids whose parents also signed them up for Togetherville.  Once you’ve approved, those people can now post on your child’s wall, send them virtual gifts, and leave comments (sounds familiar, no?).

Second, the way your child communicates with everyone is completely scripted.  The “status bar” is not an open-ended text box for your child (or others) to type into.  Instead, status updates and comments are split into different categories, with each category having about 20 responses.  They can range from “Who saw Avatar?” to “What’s up, people?”  My son’s personal favorite is, “Where is my Omnitrix?”

Since Togetherville is connected to your Facebook account, you can login at any time and view all of your child’s activity, review and moderate all comments and updates, send him/her virtual gifts (my son loves getting pictures of aliens and robots), and even gift them virtual allowance that they can then spend on virtual items.

Copyright 2010 Togetherville

It’s not all communication.  Just like (unfortunately) Farmville is a huge hit, your kids can play games on Togetherville.  The games are you standard 80’s retread clones, but my son has a blast playing a thinly veiled Arkanoid rip-off.  Kids can also watch videos, create cards, and draw.  And, since this is a social network, they can of course leave comments under each video, game, and artwork (again, pre-selected comments).

All-in-all, Togetherville is meant to bridge that gap from the age that kids want to be on Facebook, and the actual age they should be to get on Facebook.  Your child will eventually be represented on-line.  Your child will eventually post their personal information on-line.  Togetherville helps you work hand-in-hand teaching your child the appropriate amount of information to divulge while on-line.

If you’d like to get started, and are looking for someone to connect with, look us up!  You can search for “Xander.”  He’s the one with the pterodactyl avatar. (Thanks, Erika!)


One Response

  1. Hey, this is Erika from Togetherville! Thanks for the great post 🙂

    Just want your readers to know that you can’t actually search for Xander… kids are unsearchable in Togetherville.

    Have fun together!

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