New Research: Parents Matter

For years, the Pew Internet and American Life Project has been doing high-quality research on the online experience. Now, in Pew’s most recent study, “Teens, Kindness and Cruelty on Social Network Sites,” researcher Amanda Lenhart takes a close look at teenagers’ experiences on social networks. 

Among her findings: 

  • 95% of teens (ages 12-17) are online
  • 80% of those teens are on a social networking site
  • The majority of those teens report having positive experiences on social networking sites
  • 65% of social media-using teens report a social networking experience that made them feel better about themselves
  • But 41% of the same group report having had at least one negative experience
  • 88% of social media-using teens report seeing someone be mean or cruel on a social networking site
  • 15% of social media-using teens say they’ve experienced meanness or cruelty directed at them in the past 12 months
  • 19% of teens report being bullied in the last 12 months – most in person (then by text, online, and phone)
  • Parents matter: 86% of teens report getting advice from their parents, and parents were overwhelmingly the first people mentioned when kids were asked about the biggest influence on their online behavior. However, kids turn to friends first to seek advice, and then parents. 

And for anyone who’s concerned about what kids do when faced with negative experiences online, the study has some eye-opening results.  According to the research, most kids just ignore mean things they see in a social network. And a substantial number of social media-using kids report standing up for the victim. There are many more such gems in the report – check it out!

Comments

"41% of the same group report having had at least one negative experience & 88% of social media-using teens report seeing someone be mean or cruel on a social networking site" - that's a very scary statistic indeed. While we shld not stop children from using the internet, constant monitoring are very much required

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