What you need to know about Instagram & Selfies

Educator, Rachel Simmons, Author of Odd Girl Out, discusses girls on Instagram and social media, "selfless," and posting pictures of other people.
Are "Selfies" okay? Instagram etiquette?
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What you need to know about Instagram & Selfies

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Instagram is an amazing thing, I love it and I think, for the most part, it’s a wonderful place for kids to go and share their experiences; but, like most social media, some people find a way to be rude and exclusive. So, we want kids to understand that there are rules of digital citizenship anywhere you go online, Instagram included. What you want your daughter to understand is that there are certain obligations she needs to fulfill as a digital citizen and on Instagram, it is important to remember that when you post a photograph of someone without their permission or that embarrasses them in some way, that that is disrespectful behavior. And, that if someone asks you to take down a photograph that you personally think is great but they don’t like, it is your obligation to immediately comply. Instagram is a place where girls proudly post selfies and I have written before about why that can be a wonderful thing. I know a lot of people question whether or not it’s good for girls to post photographs of themselves. Are they opening themselves up to evaluation and judgment? And of course, there will always be some negative commenters out there. But for the most part, isn’t it wonderful that girls are willing to promote themselves in a way; to put themselves out there and say, I think I look good, don’t you think I look good? Because remember, girls grow up in a culture that tells them not to think too highly of themselves. So, the selfie culture in which it’s okay to say, hey I look beautiful today have a look at me-I think that’s something we want to preserve.

Educator, Rachel Simmons, Author of Odd Girl Out, discusses girls on Instagram and social media, "selfless," and posting pictures of other people.

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Expert Bio

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Rachel Simmons

Author & Educator

Rachel Simmons is the author of the New York Times bestsellers Odd Girl Out: The Hidden Culture of Aggression in Girls, and The Curse of the Good Girl: Raising Authentic Girls with Courage and Confidence. As an educator, Rachel works internationally to empower young women to be more authentic, assertive and self-aware.

Rachel is a Vassar graduate and Rhodes Scholar from New York. The co-founder of the Girls Leadership Institute, she is an experienced curriculum writer and educator who works with schools and organizations around the world. She currently develops leadership programs for undergraduate women at the Center for Work and Life at Smith College. She has previously worked as a classroom teacher in Massachusetts and South Africa.

Rachel was the host of the recent PBS television special, “A Girl’s Life,” and is a contributing writer and advice columnist for Teen Vogue.

Rachel has appeared on Oprah and the Today show, and appears regularly in the national me- dia. Odd Girl Out was adapted into a highly acclaimed Lifetime television movie. Rachel lives in western Massachusetts with her daughter and West Highland Terrier, Rosie, who is currently taking private workshops with Rachel to learn how to stop bullying other dogs.

For more information, please visit www.rachelsimmons.com.

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