Snapchat announced a new feature this week that allows users to see where their friends are posting on a map.While the new feature may make it easier than ever to find and communicate with friends and check in on what people are up to around the world, some internet safety experts worry it may be another headache for parents.“From a tech standpoint [Snapchat] really showed up, it’s a super cool feature …but if you are a parent of a child eight to 17, it’s a whole other set of worries because it is so cool and so interactive, and you know everyone is going to flock to it,” said Titania Jordan, the chief parenting officer of digital safety and solution app Bark.To access the new Snap Map, users simply update their app and are asked whether they want to opt-in to location sharing for all their friends, select friends or whether they choose to "ghost," or remain anonymous.To access the update, pinch to zoom the Snap camera, and a world opens up, showing the location of your friends.
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"[Location sharing] can be dangerous, because you are giving up your privacy, which is your right to be where you are without others knowing where you are," he said."And there is a slight -- very slight -- possibility that someone could be wanting to do you harm and knowing your location is a bad idea." Magid said as with all social media, parents should get involved and ask their kids to explain the app to them and better educate themselves on how it is used."The most important thing a parent can do is talk to their child about the use of this feature and either encourage them not to use it all or encourage them to use it very cautiously, only with specific friends," Magid said.He notes parents should encourage their children to be choosy with the friends they share their location, and to ensure they are friends they know in real life and not cyber friends.