2013 Year in Review and a few Questions for YOU for 2014

Computer keyboard with 2014 keyThe end of the year is a great time to reflect back, and then look forward to the coming year.  Some people make New Year’s resolutions, or goals and plans for the New Year.  I’m getting in on the action with a look back at Be Web Smart’s top articles in 2013.  I also have a few goals for the web site (no, it’s not going to lose that last 5 pounds!) so I have a few questions to help make Be Web Smart a better resource for YOU in 2014.

I started Be Web Smart in March of 2012, so 2013 was the first full year of operation.  This year I published 32 new articles, had over 1 million visits to the site, and added over 400 of you to the mailing list.  I hope that the articles you receive help you to understand the ever-changing digital landscape and keep your families safe online.  Here’s a recap of the 10 most-read articles this year.  I also have a few questions at the end that will help me to improve the site and make it the most useful resource possible.  I welcome your input!

Top Ten Articles of 2013

1.  What is Kik? And is Kik okay for Kids? – A review of Kik, a messaging app that gained a bad reputation due to the prevalence of sexting.  Added to the site in August 2012, I had to shut down comments last May due to the number of  harsh comments I’d been receiving.

2. How to Restrict iMessage – Originally added in July of 2012, and updated in December of that year to reflect an iOS update that made this possible, finally!

3. What is Omegle? Is Omegle okay for kids? – Published last February, this article about the anonymous chat site Omegle has received over 130 comments – more than any other article.  Many are from teens defending their use of this site.  Omegle was also the topic of a TV segment I participated in a few months back.

4. How to view your Facebook profile as someone else – Facebook topics continue to be popular, as seen with these next three articles.  Facebook remains a popular site for teens and adults but figuring out the privacy settings can be daunting!

5. How to Distance yourself from a Facebook friend without Unfriending – recently updated due to a change in these settings.

6. Who can see your comments and likes on Facebook?

7. What is Snapchat? Is Snapchat okay for kids? – Snapchat was big news this time last year, and this article was very popular for the first few months of 2013.  Many “hot” new apps and sites tend to fade in popularity as new ones come along.

8. How to add icons (emoticons) to your Messages – It’s interesting to see that this article from July of 2012 remains popular.  The most visited day was just a week ago on Christmas! I guess everyone who received a new iPod touch or iPad for Christmas wanted to use the little smiley faces :-).

9. Kid Safe Browsers for iPod Touch and iPad – added in 2012 but updated earlier this month.  With iOS7 there may be less of a need for these browsers (see next article), however many parents will still want to use these full-featured alternatives – especially those who can’t upgrade to iOS7.

10. Two iOS 7 features Parents will Love – A recent addition to the site this September after the release of iOS7.  Again a huge spike in traffic on Christmas as parents set up web content filters on the new iDevices!

A few questions to help improve in 2014

I would love your input! Please leave a comment below to answer any of these questions, or head over to Facebook.  You can also use the Contact form to send me any ideas or feedback.  Thanks again!

1. Have you ever recommended Be Web Smart to a friend? If so what did you tell them?

2. What is your favorite thing about bewebsmart.com?

3. Do you have a question or topic that you’d like addressed in an upcoming article?


Thanks and Happy New Year!


Share the Knowledge:

Never miss a post!

Sign Up for free e-mail updates


  1. Liz says

    Jean I have recommended your site many times especially to my sisters and sisters-in-law. I tell them that your site is full of helpful info for keeping kids safe online and letting them know about the various apps their kids may be using. My favorite thing is that you really make things simple for people like me who are not tech savvy.

  2. Liz says

    Yes! I have recommended Be Web Smart to many friends – I tell them all that your website is the perfect resource for parents who want to keep their children safe.
    My favorite thing about Be Web Smart is that while your articles are filled with technical information, your style is enjoyable to read.
    I don’t have a question at this time but love knowing that I can check your archives or email you if I ever do.
    Thanks so much for keeping parents informed! Have a great new year!

    • Jean says

      Thanks Liz and Happy New Year to you as well! Appreciate your sharing the information with friends. Your comment is a good reminder for me to work on organizing and categorizing everything so it can be found through search at a later date.

Comment Policy: Your comments are encouraged! As mentioned in my Comment Policy, comments will not be published that are spam or questionable spam, use profanity or inappropriate language, personal attacks, or offensive terms. Comments are moderated before being published. I try to respond to all questions in comments, but may not be able to respond to all. Due to an increase in spam, I have to ask you to do some simple math to prove you're not a spam robot....thanks!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *