What’s Worth Watching: It’s a High-Tech Life

Nick News with Linda Ellerbee
Lucky Duck Productions
Nick News with Linda Ellerbee

Nick News With Linda Ellerbee, “The Electronic Leash: Safety vs. Privacy” (Tuesday, June 16, 8/7c, Nickelodeon)

Providing a great public service to anyone of any age who appreciates straight talk about tough issues, the Emmy-winning Nick News With Linda Ellerbee returns with a new special, tackling the ever more pervasive presence of technology in young people’s lives, through the Internet and all the devices that keep them plugged into social media. In “The Electronic Leash,” Ellerbee explores the generational debate that has erupted from parents or schools setting boundaries through monitoring children’s online activity, including using GPS apps to track their location.

“[It] felt like it was invading my privacy. I felt like they couldn’t trust me,” says 14-year-old Isaiah. But fellow Columbia, Mo. teenager Zachare argues, “I think it’s OK for parents to track their kids, because if the kid is in a bad situation, the parent can go help them.” As usual, Ellerbee provides a voice of caution and reason, noting (in press materials) that, “Perhaps in the future, technology will give us ways where we won’t have to make a choice between privacy and safety. But that day hasn’t come yet.”