If you're aged 13 years or older, you can sign up for an Instagram account. Whether or not your parents let you do so, however, is another matter: don't just focus on the potentially negative aspects of the platform but point out the positive uses as well. If it helps, encourage your parents to give Instagram a trial run and take a look around themselves.

Private Accounts

You can set your Instagram account to private, which means followers must be manually approved before they are allowed to see your photos. It also means your pictures won't show up in search results, which can help you to evade unwanted attention and should put your parents' minds at rest. By keeping your account private and avoiding third-party plugins and extras, you can make sure that your pictures stay off public search engines such as Google.

Account Protection

Instagram asks for very little in the way of personal information when you sign up for an account: you don't have to provide your real name, any contact details or any links to other social media sites if you don't want to. By using a profile picture that doesn't show your face you can make it very difficult for people to find or identify you on Instagram. These safeguards may be enough to convince your parents that Instagram is safe to use. You might even want to encourage them to set up their own accounts and follow you to keep an eye on what you're posting.

Flagging and Blocking

Your parents might be concerned about various forms of bullying and abuse that can happen on social media; they might also worry about inappropriate material on Instagram. Point out to them that you can easily report and ignore other users, as well as anonymously report violations of the Instagram guidelines and terms. Banned content includes violent, nude, discriminatory, unlawful, hateful, pornographic or sexually suggestive photos, and Instagram cooperates with local law enforcement whenever required.

Inspiration and Education

As well as pointing out the ways you are protected on Instagram, you can talk to your parents about the many benefits it offers: Instagram's many millions of users across the world use the platform to post artistic, inspiring and educational photos. You can use the network to keep in touch with friends and family members across the world, see new places and explore new ideas without the clutter of a Facebook news feed or Twitter timeline. As Instagram is based around photos, it can be quicker and easier to use, meaning your parents don't have to worry about you sinking huge amounts of time into it.