Should Parents Have the "Online Talk" Before the Sex Talk?

By Casey Chan on at

Eric Schmidt, former CEO of Google, talked with Reuters last week, mostly about online security and privacy and how both relate to the General Petreaus nonsense. But he also said something interesting about parenting: Have the online talk before the sex talk.

He's got a point. If you do something irresponsible or stupid or even illegal as a 15-year-old kid, the courts will wipe it away when you're 18. But if you do something equally idiotic online, it's probably there forever. While most 15-year-olds, especially ones on the internet, have probably figured out what goes where, the online privacy talk does seem like something that needs to become a child-rearing staple—and a lot of parents are probably not equipped to do that.

When should kids reasonably learn this stuff? And what's the solution when a lot of parents and teachers could stand to get the very same talk Schmidt is asking them to give?