Is the GroupMe App Safe?
A complete app review for awesome parents.
What is the GroupMe Messaging app?
Description: GroupMe (manufacturer’s site – owned by Microsoft) is a group texting app that allows access to GIFS, emojis, images, videos, and links to websites, without ever leaving the app. It also includes direct messaging for one-to-one contact, allowing you to “ditch” the old-fashioned SMS text message and plan events with contacts in the app.
Category: Social Networking
APP Store rating: 4+ (no objectionable material)
What do parents need to know about the GroupMe app?
The app is fun for keeping groups in touch! Imagine the soccer moms, a group of friends at a concert, fraternity sisters, or a large family easily keeping in touch.
There are in-app purchases. For emoji blocks.
Sexual GIFs, images, and videos are easily accessible. What’s more, you are able to view the URL source of the GIF, image, or video via Bing without ever leaving the app, even if you have Safari turned off while using a monitored browser like Covenant Eyes.
Bark can monitor the GroupMe app if you link your child’s account to Bark. Bark’s uses algorithms to look for a variety of potential issues, such as cyberbullying, sexting, drug-related content, and signs of depression. If a potential issue is detected, a text/email alert is sent to you to review the issue, along with recommended actions on how to handle the situation.
Since there’s no way to delete past posts, there are concerns about a user’s control over content.
That’s a big problem, and it means that CleanBrowsing or another router-level filter is necessary for any home network that has kids using this app.
The bottom line: Is GroupMe safe for kids?
The GroupMe messaging app feels like high school and above. There’s just too much access to sexualized content that is not easily detected. Kids just don’t need it! Stick to old-fashioned SMS (“normal”) text messaging in junior high.
Now What? Have you Heard of Bark?
Are you interested in having greater insight into the social media platforms that your kids are using? Bark is one of the best platforms we’ve tested. They’re constantly looking for ways to dig further into apps like GroupMe, to alert parents. We trust them and we think you should, too!
*There are affiliate links throughout this post because we’ve tested and trust a small list of parental control solutions. Our work saves you time! If you decide that you agree with us, then we may earn a small commission, which does nothing to your price. Enjoy!