[The lack of fold on this is delib­er­ate; it’s more or less front page news.]

I never intended my ini­tial com­ment on Nick’s show to gar­ner the reac­tion it did, but I think what capped it all was this.

== begin ==

Name: A B | E-​​mail: c@d.com

1I love your Band so mutch I HVE MY OWN BAND IT’S CALLED DOOM CALL ME MABE MY BAND CAN HAVE YOU OVER AT MY HOUSE SOME TIME AND TEACH US SOME MOVES PPPPPPPPPPLLLLLLLLLLLLZZZZZZZZZZZ i’D LOVE THAT i’M THE BAND LEADER CALL ME AT [PHONE NUMBER DELETED] I’D LOVE FOR YOU TO CALL ME I’M 10 i LIVE IN CALIFORNIA IN [CITY DELETED] AT [ADDRESS DELETED]. PS. THIS IS MY MOTHERS EMAIL

== end ==

Per my mod­er­a­tion pol­icy, I keep com­ments from first-​​time posters in a pool that locks them out until I approve them; in this case I’m glad I did, because the boy who wrote the above had, with­out guile and in all inno­cence, put absolutely dis­cernible bio­met­ric infor­ma­tion about him­self into his message.

A ten-​​year-​​old put his home address and phone num­ber into a mes­sage, intended to be read by the folks involved in NBB, online for every­one to see. He basi­cally said, Hey, moles­ters, here’s where I live, come on by and take me away.

The phone num­ber, I think, is gen­uine, and when I Googlemapped the address, it gave a legit­i­mate loca­tion, satellite-​​mapped to an actual tree-​​shrouded house in sub­ur­ban California.

Listen, kids who are fans of the show: I under­stand you like it, and want to get in touch with Nat and Alex; but this web­site is not the way to do it. I don’t know the boys, and am not in any way asso­ci­ated with them. What you post here is prob­a­bly never going to be read by any of them.

But lis­ten closer. When you try to get in touch with them by putting your name, address and phone num­ber online, you’re not really reach­ing Nat & Alex at all. What you’re actu­ally doing is telling the world: I’m a young kid, and I live here, and here is how to get in touch with me — and if any­one who hap­pens to be a child moles­ter sees this infor­ma­tion, you can be totally guar­an­teed that he’ll use it to call you, find you and rape you.

The phone will ring and you’ll hear some­thing like this: “Hi, [your name]? I saw you like the NBB a lot and have a band your­self. Well, we’d really like to get togeth­ger with you on this. So when can we meet?” And he’ll pick a time when your folks aren’t home, or pick a place near your house, and then he’ll meet you — and what you meet won’t be a NBB rep­re­sen­ta­tive. He’ll be a pervert.

If you want to talk to Nat and Alex, that’s fine. But you can’t do it here. You have to do it with the NBB fan­site at Nick.

And even then, NEVER tell any­one where you live, or what your phone num­ber is, on the internet.

If you love NBB, that’s OK. But here is not the place to meet or talk to them. Wait until they have a con­cert or some­thing near you, and never tell any­one online where you live or what your phone num­ber is.

Because the things that live under your bed or in your closet are make-​​believe; the night­mares you have of being lost and cold and alone, away from your mom and dad and for­got­ten in the dark, are ter­ri­ble; but there are real mon­sters in the world, and they would love to know things like your home address and phone num­ber, and they will do things to you that are far too hor­ri­ble for you to imagine.

And those mon­sters don’t care about how scared you are, how bad it is, or how much you wish you could see home again.

If they can find you, they will hurt you, and they just don’t care about anything.

So NEVER put your home address or phone num­ber on the internet.

UPDATE: I sent this to the Nick folks.

To: nickprivacy@nickonline.com

Back in December I blogged about NBB; since then my site has been get­ting about 100 hits per day on this page.

This week­end I got a fol­lowup from a kid who tried to post his name, address and phone num­ber in an an attempt to get in touch with NBB.

You’re pretty god­damned for­tu­nate I’m a scrupu­lous site admin who keeps his posts in mod­er­a­tion pools and doesn’t just let first-​​timers in or the kid’s phone num­ber, age, address and name would all be posted for the world to see; and you’re just as lucky I’m not a moles­ter, or I’d use that infor­ma­tion to ter­ri­ble ends.

In the midst of the hype sur­round­ing NBB, can you pos­si­bly try to remind your young view­ers that post­ing bio­met­ric data about them­selves in an attempt to reach NBB is a bad idea — and that the best way to talk to NBB is via your site?

And while you’re at it, do con­sider jet­ti­son­ing the show completely.

Share

No related posts.

Related posts brought to you by Yet Another Related Posts Plugin.