In Annie, social media plays a major role. It acts as a catalyst through which this wonderful life-change happens for the young title character. But as Cameron Diaz noted in a roundtable interview with Blackcelebkids.com and other outlets, there are real dangers associated with kids on social media.
“I want to remind people that social media is a choice.” The actress continued, “You don’t have to allow your children to do it just because other kids do it. I think it’s something that is really dangerous.”
Although some popular social media sites do have age restrictions (13+ for FaceBook), the truth is many people choose not to abide by them. Kids all over the world are posting, sharing, and tweeting. Since it has become the norm, people may tend to forget that the internet is generally not the safest place for a child to be.
11-year-old Annie star, Quvenzhane Wallis, is one kid who knows her internet activity is being carefully monitored. She told Fox 22 that her mother “has to see” her posts before they go up. “I can’t tweet late” she noted, as well.
Cameron, who plays the role of the villain Ms. Hannigan in the new Annie, says it drives her “insane” to know there are unsupervised kids online.
I think it’s something kids don’t know how to handle. They already have enough coming at them.” Although Cameron herself does not have children, in addition to taking on the role of another mom to Quvenzhane during the shoot, she also expressed a motherly role in her niece’s life. When it comes to social media, she cracks down.
After using sites like instagram and twitter for a couple months, Cameron was compelled to reach out to her niece about the subject.
“I was like ‘you cannot be public, you have to be private.’” She also went through all of the people her niece was connected to, making sure they were direct friends and relatives only. These sites, she explained, “are not for you to connect with strangers, strangers are dangerous, especially to children.”
Although in Annie social media and its ability to find people is used for good, a point acknowledged by Cameron, the reality is that in the real word that can also be used for bad. “More often than not it’s being used to target children,” she warned.
This film is, however, a timeless story full of positive messages for the whole family. It hits theaters everywhere December 19th.