The Technological Age: Parent Knowledge and Use of Social Media Apps
Byrne, Elizabeth M.
Vessey, Judith A.
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Session presented on Sunday, September 18, 2016: Of American teenagers ages 12-17, 93% report going online daily, with more than 71% of teens reporting the use of more than one social media site. Data such as this emphasizes the increased focus on technology in the younger generations. As the world becomes more technologically oriented, so does the method of a consistent problem in this age group - bullying. Social media has become a frequently utilized platform for bullying. Social media not only distances the bully so he/she doesn't have to see the reaction of his/her victim but also potentially provides anonymity. This form of online bullying, known as cyberbullying, makes it more difficult for third parties, such as teachers and parents, to identify, witness, and intervene if a child is being bullied. Additionally, older generations are frequently not as knowledgeable about social media sites and apps as school-aged children who grew up using them. Only 39% of adults aged 30 or older report using social media, a significantly smaller percentage than the amount of teens using social media. This disparity in use and knowledge results in many parents being unaware that their children are bullying or being bullied. Therefore, as a subpart of a larger research study to develop a youth bullying screening tool, the goal of this study is to evaluate parents' knowledge and usage of popular social media apps, including Snapchat, Instagram, Kik, Yik Yak, Twitter, and Facebook. An electronic survey will be sent to variety of parents from diverse geographic, racial/ethnic, and socio-economic backgrounds. The survey will include the following components: 1) parents' knowledge of bullying and cyberbullying, 2) parents' knowledge of commonly used apps and their components, 3) family patterns of usage, including both their personal use of apps and their children's use, and 3) demographic information about the survey participants. Results are pending.