Two days later I told Child #1 she needed to sign a technology contract. "What do you mean?" she asked, hackles raised like an attack dog.
"Oh, just a contract governing the terms of your use," I said lightly, because even though I've known her for almost eleven years I still forget how she can slip into trial attorney on cross-exam mode at a moment's notice.
We got home and she snatched the sheets of paper from the printer as they came out. "Umm, Mom. We need to talk about some of these terms."
By this time I was in lawyer mode too and told her to save her questions until she'd finished reading the entire thing. In response she grabbed a highlighter and a ballpoint pen and started making notes.
"What if I want to talk about your birthday gift or Christmas gift? It's overbroad," she argued. We added the words "because it would disappoint or anger them" at the end of the first sentence.
The negotiations continued.
We modified the word parent to make it clear she is subject only to my parental standards, as opposed to parental standards in general.
We struck provision #12, dealing with picture and video taking, in its entirety, because I couldn't define a zillion and was unable to come come up with a counterargument to, "But what if I decide I want to be a photographer or videotographer?!?"
Talk to strangers was also deleted. "Are you serious? You want me to talk to strangers? You don't even let me open the door for strangers."
We signed the contract.I, ("Mom and Dad") will not play any games, change the passcode of this iTouch or pretend to be me ("Child #1"). After I look at the iTouch I will put it back where I found it. I will not send any emails or texts from this iTouch and I will not delete any pictures or videos.
And then I started calculating the cost of law school tuition approximately 12 years from now.