There are two little words that create an outsized amount of anxiety for parents. Hearing “screen time” triggers feelings of guilt and anxiety — and googling it leads to nothing but confusion. The keywords pull up an information overload: news outlets offer up competing headlines that leave parents guessing, and experts can’t seem to agree on the actual effect of time spent with screens. As a parent — and the founder of a tech company for kids — I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about screen time, and here’s my conclusion: It’s time to scrap the term entirely. …

Why Parents Desperately Need Level-headed Advice on Screen Time

Every parent knows it: that creeping anxiety when you read the latest headline on screen time or social media use. It’s ruining kids’ brains. It’s causing depression. Some experts even seem to suggest that it’s worse than heroin. But then, every so often, you see a headline telling you the opposite. Maybe screen time isn’t all that bad — maybe it can even improve school performance. Some experts say it’s as harmless as a potato.

Heroin or potatoes. Is this really what the screen time science has come to?

I don’t have a PhD in child psychology or neuroscience. I…

Fred Rogers wasn’t impressed with television, but he saw the potential to use the medium for good.

As a child that grew up in the 80s, I always felt a special connection to Mister Rogers. I was very young when my mother was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS). Within two years, she’d lost the use of her arms and legs, and was confined to a wheelchair for the remainder of her life. I don’t think this was the only contributing factor, but our household was characterized by anger, resentment and unfortunately, abuse. It was not a loving household. …

While Researching Kid-Tech for my Company, I Learned Enough to Write a Book. So I did just that.

Today marks the official release of my book Screen Captured, and it is now available for purchase on Amazon (please excuse the product plug). Even though it still feels odd to see “author” added to my bio, this feels like a proud moment — and one I want to share with my family, my team and the wider community.

I imagine some authors choose a topic they’re passionate about and then decide to write a book. For me, the process was somewhat inverted. I arrived at writing in a roundabout way as I was doing research for Kinzoo, the kid-tech…

I’m marking our beta launch with a look back at what inspired Kinzoo in the first place.

When you run a startup, it seems like every week brings a new milestone and every day presents a new challenge you’ve never encountered before. (Sometimes that challenge is networking at a conference, and other times it’s assembling an ergonomic office chair.) In the coming months, we’ll be beta testing the Kinzoo app, so things have felt especially busy lately. As we launch our Early Access Program, it feels like a good time to sit down and reflect on why I started this all in the first place.

I haven’t always been in the tech world, and in fact, I…

A Federal Trade Commission investigation into YouTube has the potential to inspire changes in how the platform operates — and that could be good news for parents.

Illustration: Anthony Ly

We can’t seem to get through a news cycle lately without hearing about one of the big tech companies — and over the last few weeks, YouTube has had its fair share of press. The Washington Post recently broke the story that the Federal Trade Commission is investigating YouTube over allegations that they violate children’s privacy. This is pretty significant news given that YouTube is the number one platform for children between 6 and 12. And yes, that’s the adult version of the platform — YouTube Kids comes in way down the list at number 45.

At the risk of…

They say it’s a change to make their platform healthier, but what’s really behind the new feature Instagram is testing?

Illustration: Anthony Ly

A little over two weeks ago, a tweet by Jane Manchun Wang gave us a preview of a new Instagram feature — and caused a stir in the process. Wong is a reverse engineer, which means she deconstructs apps to learn how they work. Through her tinkering, she was able to generate some new Instagram screenshots that looked different than what we’re accustomed to: they were missing the Like count, a crucial feature according to many users and influencers. But…

For our kids, not all screen time is created equal. As parents, we need to be able to spot the difference.

Illustration: Anthony Ly

As the Founder & CEO of a tech company that’s building products for kids, I often get questions from other parents. When I tell them what I do, the conversation almost always turns to screen time. When should we introduce screen time? How much is too much? And I’m far from the only person fielding these queries. One of my advisors is Dr. Renae Beaumont, an Assistant Professor of Psychology in Clinical Psychiatry at Weill Cornell Medicine, and creator…

It’s easy for tech platforms to turn the other cheek and enjoy the benefits of young users, but what are the implications for kids and parents?

Illustration: Anthony Ly

Recently, Mark Zuckerberg published an op-ed in the Washington Post calling for more regulation in technology. He spoke directly to four areas that have landed Facebook in hot water before: harmful content, election integrity, privacy and data portability. Admittedly, the embattled CEO has lost credibility in certain tech circles — leading one early Facebook investor to the coin the term “Zucked” to describe the systemic problems with the platform. …

Thanks to a bizarre new online challenge, it’s not just the lactose intolerant that need to fear cheese.

Illustration: Anthony Ly

If you’re a parent in the digital age, you’re probably familiar with at least a few of the bizarre hashtag challenges making their rounds on the internet. One of the most widely publicized, “Momo,” recently reared its head again in February. Momo is a creepy character and the #momochallenge was reportedly some sort of suicide or self-harm game targeting children. Though it was declared a hoax, Momo’s unsetting image began showing up in news feeds after it went viral — and it…

Sean Herman

Founder and CEO of Kinzoo. We aspire to be the most trusted brand for incorporating technology into our children's lives. Proud husband and father of two.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store