“Linda, Honey, Listen”: Moms be careful with your children’s online life


On March 18, 2014, The Ellen DeGeneres Show featured mom Linda Beltran and her eldest son Mateo, who made the 8 million viewed You Tube sensation  “Linda, Honey, Listen” – 3-year old Mateo Makes His Case for Cup Cakes”. At the end of their interview, Ellen treated Mateo to a 5 foot mound of cup cakes, and gifted Linda with a spa weekend and a $10,000 cheque to help with the living expenses of her family – including her husband Kenneth, their second child, and her parents-in-law. Mateo’s parents are capitalizing further on their son’s notoriety by selling t-shirts with his catchphrase “Linda, Honey, Honey, Listen…” with all proceeds going to his college fund. http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2014/03/17/little-mateo-pleads-his-case-for-cupcakes/

A few weeks ago, Sharon Greenthal, a former stay-at-home mom and blogger at Empty House, Full Mind wrote “A Letter To Mommy Bloggers From A Blogger With Grown Kids” encouraging mommy bloggers to NOT post photos and write about their children’s “ugly moments”. She reminds mom bloggers that their young children, whose little lives they use to create content for their blogs, “are going to grow up and develop identities separate from” their mothers. Furthermore, she warns that while these parents may be trailblazers living their lives on line, building their brands, and potentially attracting sponsors in doing so, they must be careful with their children who will grow up to be angered and hurt by their mother’s exploitation and betrayal. Rather than providing privacy for and protecting their kids, these moms will have unwittingly exposed them to the world in ways they may not want to be seen.

I wonder how Mateo will feel about himself and his parents when he is old enough to critically think about the you tube video and his notoriety as a 3-year-old.