Reading, Writing and the Internet

Many moons ago when we first became a Verizon FiOS customer, my motivations were purely, unabashedly all about me. I was sick of my internet cutting out as deadlines quickly approached. I was dog tired of spending hours on the phone with customer service. I had a need for speed and my work demanded that I have reliable internet connection so of course I jumped on Verizon FiOS as soon as I got the chance. Slowly, my data hungry ways subsided. No longer did I demand that no one else use an ounce of connection while I worked. Perhaps it wasn’t as bad as all of that, but some days it seems that way compared to the freedom my family has today. Not only can I get through a work day without a hitch, I’ve started taking for granted things like the fact that Whistler can stream Netflix in one room while I work in another. Neither can I remember the last time Ben was able to use lag as an excuse when I KO’ed him.

As much as my motives for becoming a FiOS customer may have been about me, it’s value now lies in what it can do for my family. I’ve raised Whistler to be a digital kid since he got his first iPad at just 11 months old. Thus far, I’ve seen only good things come from his closely supervised relationship with technology but it dawned on me recently that, that relationship is on the cusp of change. A few weeks ago, I gave Whistler (now 6) an old iPod so that he could FaceTime with me while I traveled. Little did I know he would quickly tap into it’s other uses. I was sitting at my desk working one day I kept him home sick from school when a message popped up…
verizon fios parental controls

Adorable? Absolutely. But I realized that his new-found reading and writing skills open up more doors than just texting Mommy. It also opens up the doors to the world wide web in a way that wasn’t accessible to him before. I’m excited about the educational opportunities this growing relationship holds as I think about the wealth of knowledge waiting to set fire inside his eager mind, but I wouldn’t be a responsible parent if I didn’t realize it also opens the door to the unsavory side of online information.

Although with the right tools, it’s easier to safeguard him against the things he isn’t ready for. With the built in parental controls on my Verizon FiOS Gateway Router, I can control Whistler’s access to the web through a variety of features including: managing internet usage on each device; turn Internet access on or off on any device; and set time limits on any device on a daily or weekly basis. Best part is most of the controls can be established or changed right from MyFiOS App so I can monitor him even while I’m traveling.

verizon fios parental controlsAs you can see, I currently have it set to only allow internet access to the device weekdays from 6-8:30pm during the week so that I don’t have to worry about him playing in the morning before school or at night after he’s “gone to bed”. Having a pre set schedule has another advantage – it’s one less thing I have to nag about! While this schedule works well for when I am home, when I’m traveling I want to be able to FaceTime and text at hours other than these so I love that I can easily change the settings from anywhere.

Being able to keep him safe while allowing him to access all of the Nat Geo wildlife videos, books and games he can get his hands on brings peace of mind. Bonus, I can allow him to take it all in without sacrificing my internet speed or connection. 

Even though I am a Verizon #LifeonFiOS Ambassador and I have received product or services for this post, they have not influenced what I’ve said. All opinions and thoughts are 100% honest and mine, all mine. 

24 thoughts on “Reading, Writing and the Internet”

  1. I hate verizon for my phone, but I’ve heard good things about fios! My kids are 5 and 6 and don’t really use the internet, but I do check apps out before they use them!

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  2. I am not a Verizon subscriber, but it is wonderful to know that they have the Verizon FiOS Gateway Route that allows parents to set some controls. Very helpful info!

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  3. My children are all grown up and they know about the dangers lurking in the internet. Right now, I no longer have a need for Parental controls, but I will share this with my sister. She has two children, both pre-teens.

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  4. My youngest has loved technology from a young age too. He had a tablet and it worked great until apps started hanging from lack of ram. Now he has a Kindle Fire and doesn’t use it much. He rather watch tv. But parental controls on technology and television is a must.

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  5. Verizon FiOS sounds like a great product. When I lived with my soon to be ex husband, our cable internet was ok, but it would cut out from time to time. Always when I had a super important projects and always right in the middle of it. Now, I am staying with my mom and she has DSL. Which is fine, but the wifi cuts out ALL the time. It’s so annoying. I have Verizon cell, I should look in to this.

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  6. Our daughter’s phone is a wonderful tracking device. I definitely use monitoring apps and notification software so she can communicate with friends and family while I monitor her decision-making skills.

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  7. I love the fact you can set times the internet is available for certain devices! This would definitely help with the ‘sneaky’ kid who hides the tablet under his blankets and waits for all the lights to go out! Thank you for sharing!

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  8. That is so sweet! My kids uses my computer for school related reasearches but that is all. Even their own iPods can only be used during weekends, I took them away during the weekdays.

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  9. I am always looking for ways to protect my daughter from the stuff I know she isn’t ready to see on the internet. There is just too much garbage out there and I am glad to know there is options like this to help us out.

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  10. Great things to keep in mind! I’m currently pregnant with our first child so I have awhile before I have to worry about this, but great info for the future!

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  11. This Verizon FiOS Gateway Router sounds like an amazing product indeed for anyone. It is so important for parents to protect their children for all the bad things that can come from them using the internet. This router is great with the parental control it comes with.

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  12. The parental controls on the MyFiOS App are great./ I wish i had this when my kids were younger. I will have to share this with my friends with little ones.

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  13. Kids are really growing fast and they are exposed to different technological advancement. I am glad you are looking into your child’s online welfare.

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  14. Parental controls are a must; especially in this day and age. We got our little one a tablet for Christmas, to aid her in learning, and we have everything but her approved apps locked down – she is only six. I wish it didn’t have to be this way but it must. I love this and all the protection it allows us, as parents, to create for our children.

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  15. I love parental controls for all the devices my kids have. I know it’s the best way to keep them safe and keep them from spending too much time online.

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  16. We have set up “times” for our kids too.
    These guys are so dang quiet that they could get up and go down the stairs and get on the computer before anyone would even know that they are awake. It’s all about keeping kids safe and I have no issue with parental controls at all.

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  17. This is awesome. As they get older it gets harder to monitor them. I’m so glad these types of safeguards exist. I have something similar for our teens.

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  18. I watch my son VERY closely with the internet. He got his first tablet at christmas I make sure that he is never on the internet except what I approve. It is a scary world out there and we need to make sure they are ready for it.

    Reply

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