With every additional post of you I put up on Instagram, you become more and more of a public figure. And as a result I spend more and more time wondering about the moral dilemma of sharenting – sharing pictures or videos of you on my social media without your consent.
The last time I touched on this subject in a letter to you, I had decided it wasn’t right to profit from this project particularly since it is your own digital footprint at stake. But the platform continues to grow and I ask myself – to what end? As I’ve documented in the past, I started writing you these letters and drawing cartoons so that you may peer into a part of your life you most likely won’t remember.
Then others started following along our journey. I have enjoyed the interactions – the sympathies, the empathies, and the laughs from everyone. I’ve met some nice people along the way because of it. And I admit, I like showing you off…you are my pride and joy! This project evolved into a way to connect with other parents because parenting in general can be lonely and difficult at times. But of course, all that is besides the point.
I obviously can’t ask how you, my child, feel about my sharenting. I’m not even sure at what age you actually would fully understand all the potential repercussions from my sharing on social media…when you’re five? Thirteen? Thirty? First grade can be a tough time, high school even harder, and what if you decide to get into politics?
The safest choice would be not to share anything. But then I wonder where my free will and individualism starts and ends. Surely, as a person, I shouldn’t be frowned upon for celebrating significant milestones in my life such as being a father.
So I’d like to continue sharing our journey, providing positive feelings and laughs in this world, all the while putting myself in your shoes to make sure I don’t share anything I wouldn’t want shared of myself or could be used against you. I still don’t believe in profiting in this project, but at the same time, I feel like we together should do something positive with this platform, so I’ve unilaterally decided that maybe we can use if we ever make money from this thing, we’ll donate all our proceeds to a charity that will give other families the opportunity to experience joy and happiness as we have. I’ll pick the charity for now and you can choose one later :)