‘Sharenting’ on social media divides Brits

More than half of UK parents say they do not share pictures or videos of their children on social media.

The so-called sharenting trend has sparked debate among parents and a new study has revealed the country is divided.

The report from Ofcom found that of the parents who do share photos online, 52 per cent said their children approved of them doing so.

The study, released this week, found of those who do not share photos of their children, 87 per cent cited privacy for their children as being the main reason.

Ofcom said posting photos to social media had become a “Marmite issue”.

“Parents are really divided about whether it’s sensible to share photos of their children online,” Ofcom’s consumer group director Lindsey Fussell told the BBC.

“The good news is that of those who do share, over 80 per cent feel very confident about restricting who can see those photos.”

The latest twist in the debate comes as an ever growing number of social media users share pictures of their kids’ everyday exploits.

Celebrities including David and Victoria Beckham, and Katie Price are among those who lead the sharenting trend.

However Cheryl Cole and Liam Payne reportedly turned down huge offers for pictures of their newborn son Bear. They have shared just one grainy photo of the tot and say they are keen to keep their family life as private as possible.

For me, I think this issue comes down to parental choice.

Some people say they find sharenters annoying and argue the volume of photos is too much. I think if you don’t like seeing it, the unfollow button is but a swipe of the finger away.

I have chosen not to identify my kids in this blog. I do show some pictures with them in but you can’t see their faces. So I’m a kind of reluctant practitioner of sharenting I suppose.

My reasons for not identifying my kids in the pictures are I feel it should be their choice whether or not their face is shown on a public website and social media.

I do share pictures of them on my private Facebook profile, where my privacy settings are at the maximum level available.

My other fear is that once a picture of my child is online it can be saved and used again elsewhere by anyone. There have been cases of fake websites set up using stolen images from social media accounts. I would be horrified to see pictures of my kids end up in a weird or unsavoury context like that. This is obviously an absolute worst case scenario, however.

To the parents who do share pictures of their kids online, I say fair enough. That’s your decision. I for one enjoy laughing or gushing over photos of other people’s adorable children.

So share away sharenters. And if you don’t like it, just don’t follow it.


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  • This was really thought-provoking! I’m in the same boat as you, have chosen to keep my kids mostly off my blog for the same reason – I want them to choose when they’re old enough whether they want to be online or not. I often wonder whether to be a successful blogger you need to go full hog and share it all but my kids’ privacy is worth more to me right now especially when they’re little x

    • Yes I thought exactly the same. I think an audience connects better when you open up pretty much every aspect of your life. It’s understandable but I’m just not inclined to do that right now when they’re so small. X