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Children Flock to Social Networks

Phil Bradley points to a very interesting article from the BBC.
Children flock to social networks
By Darren Waters, Technology editor, BBC News website
Phil has some nice highlights at his post. I found these interesting:
“More than a quarter of eight to 11-year-olds who are online in the UK have a profile on a social network”
“Most sites, such as Bebo, MySpace and Facebook, set a minimum age of between 13 and 14 to create a profile but none actively enforce the age limit.”
“Ofcom’s survey of 5,000 adults and 3,000 children found 49% of those aged between eight and 17 have a profile.”
Ofcom research shows:
“49% of children 8-17 have an online profile
22% of 16+ have an online profile
On average adults have profiles on 1.6 sites
63% of 8 to 17-year-olds with a profile use Bebo
37% of 8 to 17-year-olds with profile use MySpace
18% of 8 to 17-year-olds with a profile use Facebook
59% of 8 to 17-year-olds use social networks to make new friends
16% of parents do not know if their child’s profile is visible to all
33% of parents say they set no rules for their children’s use of social networks
43% of children say their parents set no rules for use of social networks
“Forty-one per cent of children had set their profile so that it was visible to anyone, according to the report. But 16% of parents admitted they did not know if their child’s profile could be seen or not by strangers.”
Story from BBC NEWS:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/1/hi/technology/7325019.stm
I expect that there are similar trends in North America. The prevalance of WebKinz and Club Penguin among youngsters I know is high. Either way, it is evidence of an opportunity for libraries of all stripes to participate in the teaching of presence management and information literacy skills.
Stephen

Posted on: April 15, 2008, 4:40 pm Category: Uncategorized

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