Research + News

Study Finds Over 3,300 Android Apps Improperly Tracking Kids

There’s little doubt that mobile apps sometimes overstep their bounds by collecting more data from kids than the law allows. Read the article here.

Heavy Smartphone Use Tied To Anxiety, Loneliness, Depression

New research suggests the convenience of smartphones can facilitate overuse and addiction. Read the article here.

China’s Selfie Culture: Youth Obsessed With The Power Of Appearances

Meitu’s popular apps and a flippant attitude towards plastic surgery are changing what it means to be beautiful, but the result is not always pretty. Read the article here.

More Than 80% Of Teens Own iPhone, Survey Says

Yet again, it appears the preferred smartphone of teens is the iPhone. Read the article here.

Teen Monitoring Apps Don’t Work And Just Make Teens Hate Their Parents, Study Finds

Parental control apps don’t always work well, and according to preliminary research, they can also drive a wedge between teens and parents. Read the full article here.

On Netflix, A Growing Wave Of Shows For And About Teenagers

Netflix has continued to add shows for audiences in the “in-between” ages of teens and tweens. Read the full article here.

Amazon Extends Its Lead In Parental Controls

Amazon, which already has some of the most parent-friendly options for its Fire tablets, added some more improvements. Read the article here.

58% Of Parents Concerned About Negative Health Effects In Children Using Virtual Reality

Parents see virtual reality as providing some benefits to their children, but they also have concerns. Read the article here.

You Know Who’s Really Addicted To Their Phones? The Olds

The data suggests that the ones most hooked on their devices are those graying Gen Xers. Read the article here.

Google Is Equipping More Rural School Buses With Wi-Fi And Chromebooks

Providing students with dependable Wi-Fi before and after school is a boon for those who might lack broadband internet at home, giving them two opportunities daily to complete assignments or study for exams while on the bus. Read the article here.

Where’s Your Teen Sleeping? Check Chuck E. Cheese, then Walmart

Adventure seekers are hiding overnight in stores for ‘24-hour challenge’—and are really, really bored. Read the article here.

Amazon Reportedly Wants To Create Checking Accounts For Teens

Amazon is in early discussions with banks including JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Capital One Financial Corp. to create something akin to checking accounts that will be aimed at teenagers. Read the article here.

Sorry New York Times, Sexting Is NOT Normal For Teens, And Should Not Be Celebrated

A recent column in the New York Times by Dr. Perri Klass gives the impression that sexting is a rather normal, even healthy aspect of teenage sexuality. Read a rebuttal here.

How Video Games Turn Teenagers Into Millionaires

From making their own games, to broadcasting live online, to playing professionally in packed stadiums – how entrepreneurs in their teens and twenties earn a living on video games. Read the article here.

Parents May Fret, But Teens And Even Experts Say Social Media Use Has Its Benefits

Teens and mentors talk about social media’s effects on their lives. Read the article here.

Esports Racks Up Points With Hard-To-Reach Demo: Young Males

As platforms like Twitch become destinations in their own right, and esports leagues become more formal in their structures, the opportunities for brands to engage becomes clearer. Read the full article here.

Gen-Z Relieved To Escape Their Smartphones For Several Weeks, Study Suggests

mbers of Generation Z are relieved when placed in a situation where they are unable to access their smartphones for several weeks, suggests a study conducted by Screen Education, a non-profit organization that addresses smartphone addiction. Read the article here.

Music Revenues Rise Double Digits In 2017

Streaming media platforms remain profitable for the music business — especially with paid streaming subscriptions. Read the article here.

Teenagers Are Fueling A Competitive Gaming Tidal Wave

Video games have come a long way since the days of Atari and Sega. Instead of pulling up a beanbag chair up to the tube TV in your parents’ basement, now there are worldwide competitions among top-ranked gamers and players streaming their games to millions of subscribers on YouTube. Read the full article here.

Kids Are Having Issues Holding Their Pencils Because Of Technology

It doesn’t just stop at handwriting – fine motor skill challenges could lead to trouble buttoning clothes, tying shoes and more. Read the article here.

Social Media Friends Can Bruise Your Body Image

Seeing too many social media posts from friends about their fitness activity can harm your body image, a new study contends. Read the article here.

Teen Suicides Rise In Tandem With Cyberbullying – And Advocates Have Had Enough

Families and legislators have banded together to fight a scourge that is harming and even killing teenagers. Read the article here.

No Simple Answer To Impact Of Smartphone On Teens

New research suggests the impact of cell phones is dependent upon many variables, including the vulnerability of the teen. Read the article here.

How Teens Use Fake Instagram Accounts To Relieve The Pressure Of Perfection

Fake Instagram accounts, often referred to as “finstas” or “spam accounts”, have become the norm for many teens – but their reasoning for creating these is not as sinister as you think. Read the article here.

What Happened Online in 2017 Within 60 Seconds?

This is a quick compendium of things up and downloaded, posted and searched for, sent and received, listened to and watched in bits and bytes. View the infographic and access the report here.

Through Social Media, Teens Learn From Others’ Stories And Stand Up For Their Beliefs

Viacom research revealed that through social media, teens experience the power of hearing others’ voices – and of using their own. Read the article here.

Are Young Adults Growing Tired Of Constant Social Connectivity?

Many are rethinking social media habits. Read the article here.

What Parents Need To Know About Sexting

Tips for talking with your child about sexting from JAMA Pediatrics. Read the article here.

Sexting Is Increasingly Common For Teens

The study’s authors warned that sexts, especially ones seen by people other than the intended recipient, could lead to harassment and cyberbullying — perhaps even sexual assault and suicide. Read the article here.

The Purge: New Apps Help The Tech Addicted With Digital Detox

With Millennials checking their phones an estimated 150 times a day—at least six times an hour discounting sleep—it isn’t surprising that they sometimes feel the need to detox from all of this connection. Read the article here.

That Teen Sexting Study: What Else You Need To Know

A new teen sexting research review published in JAMA Pediatrics found that about one in four teens have received a “sext,” a text message with sexual content, and approximately one in seven have sent one. Read the article here.

Gen Z Engaging With 10 Hours Of Online Content A Day

According to research by Adobe into the UK’s content consumption habits, Generation Z spend a whopping 10.6 hours engaging with online content every single day. Read the article here.

Parents Need To Start Talking To Their Tweens About The Risks Of Porn

Today teenagers are viewing far more pornography than their parents realize. And the porn they’re watching is much more “hardcore” than moms and dads could possibly imagine. Read the article here.

New Report Details The Devastating Effects Social Media Is Having On Generation Z

A study released in Jan 2018 by Barna Research Group reveals that Generation Z is more emotionally affected by the perils of social media than other generations who are also online. Read the article here.

For Some Parents, Snapchat Usage Is A Concern

Of the many major social networking apps out there, parents have expressed the most concern about their teens using Snapchat. Read the article here.

American Airlines Agent Saves Teens From Suspected Human Trafficking Plot

Authorities are crediting a quick thinking airline employee for preventing two teenagers from becoming victims of human trafficking. Read the article here.

Teens Post Online Content To Appear Interesting, Popular And Attractive

Teens work very hard to create a favorable online image through careful selection of which photos, activities and links to post on Facebook and Instagram, according to a recent study from the University of California, Irvine. Read the article here.

The Question We Don’t Want To Ask Our Teens

Teens are likely watching much more pornography than we think they are. Worse, it’s shaping, even distorting, how they believe sex should be. Read the article here.

How Is Digital Text Affecting Student Comprehension?

Researchers found that digital reading was faster but less effective as a tool for helping students process and learn information. Read more from the Growing Leaders’ blog post here.

Video Games As Varsity Sports At Some Colleges

Student-athletes compete in online games such as League of Legends, Overwatch and Hearthstone with other teams in the National Association of Collegiate Esports. Read the article here.

This Simple Solution To Smartphone Addiction Is Now Used In Over 600 U.S. Schools

Graham Dugoni, 31, started Yondr to remind people what it’s like to live phone-free. Read the article here.

Control Your Phone, Don’t Let It Control You

Common Sense Media provides tips for using your device intentionally and being a great digital role model. Read the article here.

Snapchat’s New Update Triggers Revolt By Millions Of Teens

Snapchat’s massive teen userbase is outraged at an update rolled out last week, and is already desperately trying to get the old version back. Read the article here.

How Brands Can Combat Teen Smartphone Addiction

Youth-oriented brands have led the way in developing innovative mobile campaigns targeting teens, and utilizing social media to keep them continually engaged. And now these same brands need to lead in addressing the negative effects among teens, including disconnecting from family, friends and the “real world” around them. Read the full article here.

What The Screen Time Experts Do With Their Own Kids

Parents today struggle to set screen time guidelines. One big reason is a lack of role models. Grandma doesn’t have any tried-and-true sayings about iPad time. This stuff is just too new. Read the full article here.

The Growing Leaders blog discusses the issue of digital distraction and what we can do to help Gen Z from being distracted. Read the blog post here.

Health Experts Urge Facebook To Shut Down Messenger Kids

Child development advocates are calling on Facebook to discontinue its new Messenger Kids app, which is targeted at 6 to 12 year olds. Read the article here.

Earbuds Made My Teens Tune Me Out, So I Changed How We Listen To Music

Nicole Roach, for Common Sense Media, explains how her and her husband turned the tables on their teens and got them to unplug and open up about their favorite musical artists. Read the article here.

Despite YouTube and Amazon’s Efforts, Record Numbers Of Teens Are Still Eating Tide Pods

The “eating Tide Pods” meme continues to be one of the more baffling parts of 2018. Read the article here.

Teens More Likely To Be Hacking Computers Than Smoking Or Having Sex

Modern 14-year-olds are eschewing these traditional forms of acting out – in favor of hacking computers from their bedrooms. Read the article here.

U.S. Video Game Industry Revenue Reaches $36 Billion in 2017

The US video game industry generated a record $36 billion in revenue in 2017, up 18 percent from 2016. Read the article here.

Why One Hour A Day Is The Perfect Amount of Screen Time For Teens

The happiest teens spend just under an hour a day on social and other digital media, a new study suggests. Read the article here.

What Teen Sexting Reveals About Women And Sexual Coercion

Many girls feel pressured to comply with requests to send naked photos of themselves to boys who demand them. Read the article here.

Does The Internet Change Beliefs About Religious Affiliations?

New research finds that the digital environment, specifically the Internet, may decrease the likelihood of a person affiliating with a religious tradition or believing that only one religion is true. Read the article here.

Cutting-Edge Content From Digital Publishers Keeps Millennials Coming Back For More

The growth of digital content, both text and video, has transformed the way people engage with media—whether that’s getting breaking news, watching game highlights, checking out the latest fashion trends or figuring out what’s for dinner. Read the article here.

The Sneaky Science Behind Your Kid’s Tech Obsession

The first step toward resisting the pull of digital products like Snapchat, Instagram, and Netflix is recognizing the tricks they use to keep you hooked. Read the article here.

Most Millennials, GenZers Spend At Least Six Hours A Day On Their Cell Phones

It’s no secret that younger people are glued to their screens for much of the day. Read the article here.

9 Ways Porn And Predators Will Target Kids In 2018

To keep kids safe in the digital age, parents need to stay one step ahead of trends and know exactly what they are up against. Read the full article here.

“What Should I Do?”: Young Women’s Reported Dilemmas With Nude Photographs

A thematic analysis of young women’s stories reveals that they received conflicting messages regarding sexting. Read the research here.

A&E ‘Undercover High’ Reveals How Cell Phones Destroy Education

What is it about the cell phone addiction that makes kids push back so ferociously at the suggestion that they put down their phones in order to pay attention in class (or interact with family members at dinner)? Read the article here.

Fitbit Considers Developing Smartwatch For Kids

In recent years the market for devices that help parents track their children’s health has grown enormously. Read the article here.

Bullying and Cyberbullying

A 2014 McAfee study revealed that 87 percent of youths have witnessed cyberbullying and 49 percent of students have regretted something they have posted online. Read this blog post from Jim Burns here.

2 Apple Investors Call On It To Counter Teens’ iPhone Addiction

The Apple iPhone is far and away the most popular mobile device among teens — too popular, in fact, according to two of the company’s investors who are calling on the company to study its “unintentional negative consequences.” Read the article here.

Tops of 2017: Television and Social Media

Shows that may not have cracked the top 10 in viewership made up for it in social buzz, demonstrating the dynamic value of television in 2017. Read the article here.

Video Game Stars: Players As Celebrity

Gone are the days where the plotlines of Thursday night sitcoms are discussed in the schoolyard Friday. Your kids are potentially more likely to be watching talented or charismatic gamers play online and partaking in communal chat rooms with fellow fans. Read the article here.

Teenagers, Stop Asking For Nude Photos

An analysis of nearly 500 accounts from 12- to 18-year-old girls about their negative experiences with sexting found that over two-thirds had been asked for explicit images. Read the article here.

How Technology Can Help You And Your Kids As Long As You Let It

Thankfully, there is a lot of tech that can help us become better parents and take care of our children and their growing needs. Read the article here.

Helping Teens Turn Off In A World That’s ‘Always On’: The Links Between Technology And Depression

A new study links anxiety, severe depression, suicide attempts and suicide with the rise in use of smartphones, tablets and other devices. Read the article here.

If Your Kids Are Glued To Their iPads, It’s Probably A Good Idea To Unglue Them

Is it possible that our children’s ubiquitous use of tablets, computers, and televisions harms their vision? Read the article here.

Tips For A Tech-Wise Christmas

Here are some key statistics and helpful tips to make yours a tech-wise home for the holidays. Read the article from Barna here.

Snapchat Is Still The Network Of Choice For U.S. Teens – And Instagram Is Facebook’s Best Shot At Catching Up

Snapchat still dominates among teenagers, a core demographic that represents the future wave of internet consumers and what they care about. Read the article here.

2017 On Netflix – A Year In Bingeing

A look back at the shows we watched (and watched again) that defined our year. Read the report from Netflix here.

Tech At Bedtime May Mean Heavier Kids

Kids and their smartphones aren’t easily parted, but if you want your children to get a good night’s sleep and to stay at a healthy weight, limiting bedtime screen time appears key, new research suggests. Read the article here.

Kids Are Gluttons For Digital Video

It would be hard to overstate the importance of YouTube in kids’ digital mix. One survey shows 45% of 8- to 12-year-olds in the US have YouTube accounts. Read the article here.

Teens Don’t Realize How Much Their Parents Track Them Online

More than a quarter of parents use a device to track or monitor their kids’ online activity. Read the article here.

Smartphone Addiction Causes Changes In The Teen Brain

Teens may be the most susceptible to smartphone addiction. 73% of US adolescents have a smartphone or can gain access to one. Of them, 96% go on the internet daily, a Pew Research Center poll found. Should parents limit exposure? Read the rest of the article here.

‘Niche Memes’ Are The Secret Clip Art Diaries Teens Are Posting On Instagram

In order to cope with the stresses of middle school life, teen girls are reviving MS Paint kitsch to find community—and de facto therapy—across the web. Read the article here.

When Kids Get Their First Cell Phones Around The World

About 45% of US children ages 10 to 12 have a smartphone with a service plan. Outside the US and Europe, children tend to get their first mobile phones when they are older. Read the article here.

These Are The Top YouTube Videos That Went Viral In 2017

YouTube’s top viral video in 2017 was a singing man in an oyster costume. Read and view the rest of the list here.

Does ‘Smartphone Addiction’ Show Up In Teens’ Brains?

Teens fixated on their smartphones experience changes to their brain chemistry that mirror those prompted by addiction, a new study suggests. Read the article here.

Cellphones, Video Games Eyed In Teen Suicide Study

Researchers studying a spike in teen suicides in Utah found that 18 of the 150 youngsters who took their own lives in a five-year period had recently lost privileges to use their electronic devices such as phones, tablets and gaming systems, according to a U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report. Read the article here.

Streamer Things: Internet-Enabled TV Connected Devices Found In Nearly 60% Of U.S. TV Homes

It’s no secret that in addition to traditional television, viewers also have access to a plethora of subscription video on demand content and virtual multi-channel providers. Read the article here.

Facebook’s Newest App Is A Chat Service For Kids

Facebook is launching a new chat app for kids, the company announced Monday. Read the article here.

Smartphone Addiction = Brain Chemistry Imbalance

Researchers have found young people addicted to smartphones and the internet display an imbalance in their brain chemistry. Read the article here.

How Tech Companies Are Catering To Generation Z Teens

Kids born after 1995, also known as Generation Z, will make up 40 percent of consumers by 2020, and retailers are desperate for their attention. Read the article here.

Tech Still Tops Many Consumers’ Holiday Lists

As the holiday shopping season officially gets underway this week, electronics are once again among the top items on consumers’ lists. Read the article here.

Laptops Are Great. But Not During A Lecture Or A Meeting.

Step into any college lecture hall and you are likely to find a sea of students typing away at open, glowing laptops as the professor speaks. Read the article here.

Study Finds Sharp Drop In Time Spent On Facebook

Facebook users in the US spent more time with the platform than users of any other social network, 18 hours, 24 minutes. But that was a significant drop from the 32 hours, 43 minutes recorded by Verto Analytics a year ago. Read the article here.

Teenage Depression And Suicide Are Way Up – And So Is Smartphone Use

Those born after 1995 are much more likely to experience mental-health issues than their millennial predecessors. Read the article here.

Movement Calls On Parents Not To Give Their Children Smartphones Until 8th Grade

ABC News features a video highlighting a movement called the “Wait Until 8th” campaign. Watch the video here.

Germany Bans Kids’ Smartwatches That Can Be Used For Eavesdropping

A German regulator has banned domestic sales of children’s smartwatches that have a listening function — warning that parents have been using the devices to secretly eavesdrop on teachers at their kids’ school. Read the article here.

The Heavy Price Parents Pay When iPhones Becomes Babysitters

Tim Elmore discusses technology and the emotional needs of kids. Read his blog post here.

Screen Time Increases Teen Depression, Thoughts Of Suicide, Research Suggests

An increase in suicide rates among U.S. teens occurred at the same time social media use surged and a new analysis suggests there may be a link. Read the article here.

Call To Ban Sale of IoT Toys With Proven Security Flaws

Working with security researchers the a UK consumer rights group has spent the past 12 months investigating several popular Bluetooth or wi-fi toys that are on sale at major retailers, and says it found “concerning vulnerabilities” in several devices that could “enable anyone to effectively talk to a child through their toy”. Read the full article here.

Obsessed Much? Mobile Addiction Is Real

But people are making efforts to limit their smartphone usage. Read the article here.

Startling Number Of Teens Cyberbully Themselves

A study showed that 7.1 percent of boys and 5.3 percent of girls had cyberbullied themselves. Read the article here.

Rise In Teen Suicide, Social Media Coincide; Is There Link?

An increase in suicide rates among U.S. teens occurred at the same time social media use surged and a new analysis suggests there may be a link. Read the article here.

I Watched 1,000 Hours Of YouTube Kids’ Content And This Is What Happened

What do you get if you endlessly recombine Spiderman and the Joker with Elsa from Frozenand lashings of product placement for junk food brands like McDonalds? Read the article here.

Sean Parker Unloads On Facebook ‘Exploiting’ Human Psychology

Sean Parker, the founding president of Facebook, gives us a candid look at how social networks purposely hook and potentially hurt our brains. Read the article here.

Teens Are Faking It On Instagram, But Should Parents Be Worried?

Parents are often told how important it is to monitor what their children are doing online, but some kids may be creating social media accounts their parents don’t even know about. Read the article here.