Welcome to The Privacy Dad's Blog!

I write about online privacy and parenting. This is a diary, not a guide.

The Privacy Dad's blog is for anyone, but especially for beginners who may want to take steps towards digital privacy. I describe what worked for me, the problems I ran into, and how all of this influenced my parenting.


The Privacy Dad Special Guest on MoneroTopia Episode #109

  • I was a guest on Monero Talk's MoneroTopia show this week.

Books That Have Inspired Me

  • Good books shape better minds in us.

Light Phone 2 Review

  • The Light Phone 2 is a success story, and the result of a long streak of good decisions made by the development team.

In Between Operating Systems

  • Taking small steps away from proprietary software might be a more sensible option than a dramatic leap forward.

In Between Projects

  • It's surprising and strange to experience a sense of deflation when you've completed a project.

Control Your Own Content with RSS and AntennaPod

  • Curating your own podcasts and news feeds can help you avoid returning to social media and algorithms.


  • Working on your computer ergonomically does not need to cost a lot of money.

Kids & Screens: Safeguarding Discussions

  • When it comes to safeguarding children against online abuse and other dangers, it is better to cultivate open discussions than it is to avoid them because the topics are difficult or embarrassing.

When Things Go Wrong

  • What to do when self-hosted systems you've invited others to join break down.

Building My First Server

  • Building a server can be slow-going, but can help teach important concepts about the Internet tools we use daily.

Kids & Screens: Can I Have a YouTube Channel?

  • How to negotiate your children's requests to join platforms like YouTube.

What Is an IP Address?

  • An explanation of IP addresses for beginners, and why they are important.

Linux on Old Devices

  • The combination of old computers and free Linux distros enables anyone to learn how computers and operating systems work.

Why I Still Use Reddit

  • Reddit is a mainstream social media platform with some redeeming qualities for the privacy-concerned individual.

Managing Your Own Disk Drives

  • Learning how data is stored on your own computer is a good first step towards managing your data responsibly.

Obsessing over Privacy

  • Sometimes a genuine interest in digital privacy can lead you down a dark path.

Kids & Screens: An Argument for Video Games

  • Video games are an important and meaningful form of entertainment for children.

A Conversation with ChatGPT about the Future of Online Privacy

  • This is a transcript of a conversation between a human and an AI about the future of online privacy.

Exploring Social Media Alternatives: Pixelfed and Odysee

  • A review of Pixelfed and Odysee as alternatives to Instagram and Youtube.

What Is an Administrator?

  • A layperson's definition of servers and administrators.

Overcoming Minor Hurdles with LibreOffice Writer

  • A description of some of the easy minor adjustments someone new to LibreOffice Writer may have to make.

Kids & Screens: Parental Controls or Admin Rights?

  • A case for ditching parental controls and becoming the admin on your child's devices and platforms instead.

From Evernote to Standard Notes

  • A review of Standard Notes as an excellent, privacy-focused alternative to Evernote

Can I Keep a Digital Journal?

  • A digital journal can work as a good test case to see how much we really trust our software and devices.

What Is Big Tech?

  • Glossary post - a definition of Big Tech and why awareness is important.

A List of Apps and Software that I Use

  • The list of apps on my smartphone and software on my desktop pc that remained after research and deletion.

Kids & Screens: What Is the Right Age for a Smartphone?

  • The question 'What is the right age for a Smartphone?' is not an easy one to answer, and may require flexibility and compromise.

Kids & Screens: Feature Phones for Children

  • Giving your child a feature phone can be a good way to postpone the smartphone discussion, while solving the problem of staying connected.

A Case for Desktop

  • Restricting the bulk of online tasks to desktop only can be liberating, though there are some problems.

My Experience with the Nokia 8110 Dumbphone and KaiOS

  • A review of several years spent taking a dumbphone out, leaving the smartphone at home.

From WhatsApp to Signal

  • Pros and cons with deleting WhatsApp and moving to Signal.

Kids & Screens: The Morning On/Morning Off Rule

  • Alternating screen mornings for television, Internet and video games can limit excessive screen use during weekends and longer breaks.

Special Post: Honest Feedback from the Oldest Child

  • My oldest child, now in college, reflects on our screen and device rules.

De-Googling Your Smartphone as a Beginner

  • The process of removing Google from an Android device is not easy but can be worthwhile.

The Compromise of Cloud Storage

  • Unless you trust your IT security skills fully, it may still be best to put your trust in a privacy-respecting cloud storage company.

More Private Browsing with Firefox and DuckDuckGo

  • It is simple to stop using data gathering browsers and switch to a privacy browser and search engine instead.

What Is Your ISP?

  • Glossary post - definition of Internet Service Provider and how important they are.

Reducing the Number of Apps on Your Smartphone

  • As a step in digital minimalism, deleting all unnecessary apps on your smartphone can be a liberating experience.

Kids and Screens: (Used) Laptops, Linux, LibreOffice

  • Buying refurbished laptops and installing Linux on them is a way to give your child a fast, usable computer, at a fraction of the price of a new laptop.

What is Digital Privacy?

  • Glossary post - a defintion of digital privacy and why it is important.

Moving from Gmail to Tutanota Email

  • Though it may take some time and energy to find the right match, it is worth investigating privacy-preserving email alternatives.

Kids and Screens: One Simple Rule

  • Keeping screens out of the bedroom at all times is a simple rule all kids can understand and follow.

Keeping Your Smartphone Out of the Bedroom

  • A simple step towards freedom from smartphone addiction is to charge your devices in the living room.

Why I started Paying for Apps, Platforms and Services

  • While not without problems, paying for digital tools is a good first step towards a more considered approach to using software.

Deleting my Facebook Account

  • Any first step for anyone who wants digital privacy is to suspend and then delete social media accounts.

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