Baby LoJack and Teen Surveillance: Can (Should) Technology Replace Good Parenting?

cutebaby

Adorable baby photo courtesy of Flickr user //endless

So, I happened to catch one of those sanctimonious Duracell commercials in which having a pair of double A batteries saves the world from blowing up, prevents a small child from falling down a glass-shard-encrusted well, or some such nonsense.  This particular commercial depicted a mom spending an afternoon in the park with her children.  Mom turns around for a millisecond and little Timmy is gone.  But not to panic!  Mom has a Brickhouse Child Locator System (powered, of course, by Duracell).

Using GPS technology, little Timmy is equipped with a homing tag (at present this is an external device that can be worn or stored in a pocket or backpack) and his mom has the Locator which beeps faster as the homing tag gets nearer.  Crisis averted. lojack2

I was curious about this Child Locator system (which I fondly like to think of as “Baby LoJack”) so I checked out the website of the makers: Brickhouse Security.  They have some interesting products for “child safety”: hidden nanny cams (one looks just like an air purifier, another is disguised as an alarm clock), a GPS teddy bear, and bulletproof backpacks! Who are these kids’ parents?  Jack Bauer?

But then I found their “Teen Tracking” product line (“As seen on Fox News!”).  Get a load of this:

Sex, Drugs & Reckless Driving. Teen Tracking will put you as parents back in control. Sleep peacefully while your daughter or your son is out, monitoring their movements. Your children are counting on you to keep them safe.

Wanna know what you kid is text-messaging?  No problem!  Get a Cell Phone Spy Data Extractor.

Worried that Cindy Ann and her new bf are making out in your station wagon?  Put the kibosh on that with a CarCam Voyager.  Over 8 hours on one video card!

Wanna know if Johnny is really at baseball practice but don’t want to, you know, ask him?  Say no more!  Brickhouse’s got you covered.  Slip one of their Super PocketTrack Covert GPS Tracker pens into his (bulletproof) backpack!

Not quite invasive enough for you?  Why don’t you attach a Brickhouse Key Logger to his computer?  See over 64,00 keystrokes- even passwords!

Think Annie is lying to you?  Do you suspect that she is having premarital sex?  Don’t sit down and have a frank, heart-to-heart, mother-daughter talk!  And there is certainly no need to place any trust in your teen.  Technology is here for you!  Try Brickhouse’s Portable Lie Detector!  It can analyze any voice in person or on the phone.  And best of all, it has super cute graphics: “the Demon icon’s nose and horns grow when someone tells a lie.”  Nice touch!

Still have doubts?  Why not make like a CSI and invest in a Brickhouse Semen Detector?  (No, seriously.)

It’s a brave new world, huh?

Advertisements

8 thoughts on “Baby LoJack and Teen Surveillance: Can (Should) Technology Replace Good Parenting?

  1. Nothing can replace good parenting, but I think some of the crazy technology that’s coming out can certainly help parents be better informed and have the ability to protect their kids better. Of course, there will be parents who use this stuff to go over the top, but isn’t that with anything?

  2. concerned parent, you definitely have a point. I think most parents would much prefer an open discussion and a trustworthy relationship with their kids. Although it is nice to know that technology can serve as a means of bridging certain gaps.

    I just get my feathers ruffled when the rights of children and teens are trampled upon. Teens are in such an awkward position- we expect them to act like adults, behave respectably when we are not around, and earn our trust. But very often we (adults, that is) do not give them the chance to earn that trust.

  3. I liked what you had to say about being to intrusive. I looked at the brickhouse website and it looked like a lot of spy and James Bond stuff. I did some further digging and found some more articles on child locators that would be less intrusive. As a dad I want to keep my kids safe.

  4. I have three girls and worry about their safety. There has to be a good balance between trust and protection. I think child locators child locators can be a good thing if you have the right one and you help your child understand that you do trust them but there are people out there that will hurt them and as parents we need a way to know where they are so we can help. I don’t want to take away my kids rights I just want them to be safe.

  5. I have three girls and worry about their safety. There has to be a good balance between trust and protection. I think child locators can be a good thing if you have the right one and you help your child understand that you do trust them but there are people out there that will hurt them and as parents we need a way to know where they are so we can help. I don’t want to take away my kids rights I just want them to be safe.

  6. I am a teenager. I have an great relationship with my parents, and the main reason for that is they trust me and respect my privacy. This means that if I do find myself in dangerous situations, I know I can tell them, and be protected by them. Now, I have the good fortune of A) having smart, reasonable parents who I trust and know I can talk to if I need to, and B) being a good kid who 95% of the time does not have a reason to go behind my parents backs about things. However, I am good friends with people who have quite different relationships with their parents, and let me tell you this: when you spy on and track your teenagers, especially without talking to them about it, they feel utterly betrayed. Utterly. Betrayed. If you want to put a huge rift in your relationship with your kid (no matter how safe they are kept), that will do it quite nicely. How good will you feel about Johnny not selling crack if Johnny won’t speak to you ever again? Not only that, but if Johnny knows he can trust you, he’ll tell you about his crack problem when he realizes he needs help. Being able to trust your parents and knowing they support you and love you no matter what is by far the best safeguard. I may be too young to know anything about having kids, but being a teenager I know teenagers pretty well. I know kids who have chosen to live on the street instead of under the roof of a parent who tries to control them completely. And these are reasonable teenagers I’m talking about here, not just ungrateful brats. If you feel safer having a GPS in your kid’s cell phone, talk to them about it and explain it to them. Most of us are smarter than we’re given credit for.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s