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Do You Post Photos of Your Kids Online?

I’m part of a message board for parents of twins in my community, where we share tips, ask questions, and share concerns. The other day one member wrote that a friend of hers had downloaded photos of her twins on Facebook, without asking her permission first. The twin mom was APPALLED that a photo of her precious children was floating around the murky waters of the “Interweb,” and asked the rest of us what we thought about posting pictures of our kids online.

Um, what year is this lady living in, I wondered. Don’t Facebook and other social networking sites exist for the sole purpose of showing off our children to random people from high school? I myself post probably hundreds of photos of my kids online -- and then check back regularly to count how many comments they receive. What’s the big deal?

Then I read this article about a Missouri clan who received a call one day from a friend of theirs living in Prague. He had just seen their family photo on a giant billboard in the Czech city, advertising a grocery store. Turns out, the photo was a holiday-card snapshot that the mom, Daniella Smith, had also posted on her website. How it ended up touting a foreign store’s speedy delivery service is a mystery.

After I got over my initial jealousy—why weren’t any of my family photos picked up for international advertising distribution?I thought, hmmm, kinda creepy.

Have I been wrong all along? Should I delete my Facebook albums, take down my blog, and erase any online trace of my family?