We probably don’t have to tell you how much we love social media around here. We’re constantly amazed by how social networks allow us to stay connected, share content and engage in meaningful conversations in so many ways.

Making social media a safer space

But unfortunately, there can also be a dark side to social media – one that parents are all too aware of. Technology’s power to connect, in the wrong hands, can be used to manipulate or harm. It’s important that we continue to seek out and use innovative approaches to boost the online safety of our children.

Our COO Tracey McCoy wrote an excellent article for Newsweek a few months ago on this topic, discussing mobile apps that are helping authorities catch online predators. One app, My Mobile Watchdog, lets parents to monitor their child’s cell phone activity, alerting them when a stranger makes contact with the child via social media or phone. Another, STOPit, is an app that provides a place for students to anonymously report acts of cyberbullying to school officials and authorities.

Mobile apps like these are making huge strides toward improving the online safety of our kids.

But what if there were a completely safe and supportive social network where parents didn’t have to worry about these kinds of dangers for their teens? No bullies, no haters, no predators – just an online community where teens can be themselves and make real connections with others.

That’s precisely the mission of the new mobile app, güdly.

Creating a social network based on kindness

güdly (pronounced “goodly”) is “the world’s first online community centered on kindness and the principles of paying it forward.” It’s a free app on iOS and Android devices, and its goal is to create a respectful, authentic and negativity-free social media experience.

“Our App is a place where users can express themselves freely and emotionally, without fear of hate speech or negativity. It’s the Golden Rule, gamified,” said David Centner, founder of güdly, in a press release this week.

What’s great about güdly is that it offers the best parts of social media while eliminating the worst:

  • Familiar social media functionality (news feed, photos, profiles, comments and hearts)
  • The güdly wheel, a navigation device that encourages users to:

Give: Share kindness with friends or random community members through affirmations and support.

Ask: Reach out to the community and ask for support, advice, encouragement or kudos.  

Guard: Flag negative or inappropriate content, regulating what is allowed on the network and safeguarding against cyberbullying and harassment.

We’d love to see more of this kind of positivity online! Learn more about how to use güdly.

 

(Image Source: itunes.apple.com)

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