Well this is sure to be an interesting discussion.
My parents aren't exactly computer illiterate, so they don't really have a clue what I do. They know I am really good with "that box-shaped machine in the corner" but they don't know what I spend my time doing.
They don't trust the internet with things such as credit cards, so buying even a domain/hosting is a real battle for me. Even giving out names on the internet is too far for my parents.
I hope my parents know that all this time is being put to good use, instead of playing games and other mostly-useless activities (some games enrich the mind, such as puzzles and Unreal ). All this time will pay off in the end.
I can't wait to hear what the rest of you have to say!
I'm a parent My daughter is 1 year old and she can't seat and play with her toys when I'm doing something with that digital monster . She really enjoys hitting the keyboard at extremely high speed.
I think most parents should prefer their kids spending time in front of their monitor rather then participating in "street activities". However some people get sucked by online communities that they actually stop existing as material person.
Sorry to hear so many parents don't always "get it"...I know that sounds like an immature thing to say...but I'm convinced it's true: most young webmasters have parents who don't fully support them.
I second what Aidan says: it will pay off...it's so obvious that it will...it might be a good idea to sit down and REALLY explain it all to them if possible...it would take quite a stubborn person to, even after being shown all the potential for sucess the Web has, still dissaprove or doubt it.
My parents don't like me working on the internet. Whenever I get job offers, I'll show a couple to my parents (which I have stoped doing now...) and they'll freak out. They'd spit out a bunch of things I should do all before I've even replied to the offer. They just don't like the idea that work can be done on the internet w/o seeing the people you're working with.
I guess my parents would rather I work as a carryout for a grocery store, making 5.7/hr, instead of doing web work (which will be more useful in the future, since I don't plan on bagging grocerys when I'm 30) which normally makes 20-50/hr.
As for what Aidan said about credit cards...my parents are the exact same way. It took me about 6 months to a domain name & hosting. Between the time I originally said I want a domain name (and offered the money to my parents) and the time I got the domain name, my first and second choices had been taken. Its one of those industries where you just gotta go when you find something - you can't wait 6 months. And credit cards are even protected to a degree from abuse and stuff.
When I strted building websites at first they said "Whats a website?" okay so it maybee wasn't that bad but they are pretty computer illeterate (I have now got my dad started on the internet and he loves it excpet for every time he gets an e-mail he rushes to tell me which can be a bit anoying). At first they thought it was just a phase and I wouldn't do it for more that a couple of months and they were always telling me that I should spend less time on the computer. Now they relise the possibilities of it (ie. career and money) they arn't so bad. They are even really good about letting me use the credit card, although every time they go "Has it got a padlock at the bottom of the screen" (meaning secure server). So in all my parents are pretty cool about everything.
Well my parents aren't very supportive at all. They just know I spend a lot of my time in front of that "fancy TV" and need to do "real" things...
I hope this post can convience them otherwise. They don't think kids should be able to make money on the internet because they don't see people. Then they can't see why on earth we enjoy staring at the screen all the time and think we need to be more involved more things.
I guess they are thinking in terms of their generation and just don't understand what the internet is and does.
Although some parents are really supportive and encourage PC use, I think the majority of them are not. I wish mine were.
My parents don't really know how to use the computer. My mom knows how to turn it on, and that's about it. My dad can turn it on, connect to the internet, and surf around, although he sometimes has to call me over to help him figure something out. My brother is 11 and he has his own computer. He's not bad, but he's only into e-mail and chat. No programming for him.
Anyway, my parents think the Internet is great. My mom is always asking how my current clients site is going, and sometimes helps me with "eye" design issues. My dad is the same way.
They always make me go online and buy them books and whatnot. They know that their CC is almost 100% secure. Anyway, they think the Internet is great and they support it...
I guess I'm the lucky one in some ways. My parents (both of them) have been doing Internet and computer marketing for years now so they both know quite a bit about technology. They still do have a problem with credit cards, and me installing parts in a computer.
The only thing that I really hate is that I don't have any time to do stuff on the computer on the weekends. We just moved into a new house and this is the first time we have a garden and birdfeeder but my parents are obsessed. My brother and I work outside on the garden for 5-6 hours each weekend day watering, putting in plants, dumping mulch, cleaning off the porch, cleaning out the garage and basement, etc., and during the week I have been "ordered" to water the lawn for 45 minutes and replace the birdfeeders (all 4 of them).
My parents take me on trips to Neiman Marcus (or Needless Markup, however you say it), birdfeeder stores, Pottery Barn, Smith and Hawken, etc., every weekend. They say it's because they love my company but that's obviously not the case 'cause they ignore me once they're in the stores. But I think part of the reason I'm taken out to go on those trips (and my brother is left at home) is because they think I'm "playing shootemup games too often" or "Linuxing" as they say it.
They don't seem to realize that I'm making a PHP content system when they THINK I'm playing HalfLife (even though I don't own the game).
And now I'm hopeful that I'll even get to build my computer from the parts that I bought (it cost me $1100 so far) because someone from their company has to come out to our house and certify that I didn't screw up on the wiring. That's just fine with me but my site will REQUIRE me to swap video cards to review them, etc., so that basically takes away the whole point of having a "test" computer.
Sounds like the only way to go about all this is to work hard at it, make some money, and show them the check. Show them every check you get until they finally crack...no matter how against all this your parents are they'll have to give in if they see you raking in the dough again and again and again...
Try to find a way to apply your skills to help them or help something in everyday life...if not a check to brag about, then something to improve a business your parents might be starting...anything to prove to them that this is real, this is useful, and this is NOT a waste of time.
But as I have always been into art and design I really enjoy designing sites. I like having a creative outlet. If I draw something it's only going to be seen by maybe 5 or 6 people but a website can potentially be seen by millions (realistically thousands).
I play a lot of football (soccer if you are in the US) and I go out all the time with friends so I'm not a recluse that spends 10 hours a day on the net. My parents don't particularly like me on the net (taking up the phoneline), they prefer me to be outside doing something else. They are sort of coming around, I even got to use the credit card last week.
Now that I am setting up an web design business and have had a few enquiries from interested companies they realise that I could make a living out of it, well part time until I finish university (I'll be doing a graphic design course).
Overall my parents attitude has been indifferent, they don't mind certain aspects of my working on the net but they hate some of it too. I think my mother is more ok with it than my dad, which is strange because my dad is a computer technician.
<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote/font><HR>Originally posted by TWTCommish: Sounds like the only way to go about all this is to work hard at it, make some money, and show them the check. Show them every check you get until they finally crack...no matter how against all this your parents are they'll have to give in if they see you raking in the dough again and again and again... <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
I thought it would be like that for my parents, but it isn't. I have gotten at least $100 from the web in the last few months, but my parents don't trust me. They think I dont deserve it.
My mom is disabled...and spends more time in front of a PC than me...except that I am productive, and she plays games; so she doesn't bother me about the time I spend.
My dad works at resorts...at his last job he was the third highest person. It is kind of funny, he was the head accountant, and because no one else really took control, practically the Sysop. To show how much he knows, everywhere he goes he converts people to NT, he knows little about Linux.
They trust me, but don't like that I put $50/month on their credit card for hosting. It took me a few months to finally get my dad to use his "family" email. Notice, mine is richard@brevig, so his is email@example.com.
Currently, I make sure he doesn't get his terms mixed up, and just a few weeks ago before he went to a convention I told him what a TLD was...I want to make sure he doesn't sound like an idiot while at work. I don't even try with terms when it comes to my mom. Whenever I talk to her about computers or her ideas for a website, I have to actually ask her to stop at times while I try to figure out the actual terms that she is trying to say, so that I can understand what she is saying.
I've been online for 7-8 years now, and so when I started you paid hourly fees and alot of times long distance charges as well.
At first my parents weren't too thrilled when the got the bills from me being online all the time. And of course they were also worried I was spending too much time on the computer.
But then when I started doing web programming professionally and making more money per hour than my dad does, who is a doctor. Then well they realized the potential there is in this business and those phone bills from way back when don't seem so expensive.