The publisher of Parenting magazine and BlogHer.com just surveyed 1,032 moms on the effect of technology on parenting behavior. The study will be published in September, but you can download a PDF Executive Summary of the survey now.
From the press release:
Parenting and BlogHer found that the majority of moms surveyed have a very positive view of technology’s role in fostering communication and connections within their families:
- 87% agree that understanding new technology is important to stay connected with their children.
- 70% feel that technology can provide great ways for families to spend time together.
- 83% care about new technology because of the benefits it brings to their everyday lives.
These moms do see threats to their children…from both the Internet and television, but they don’t believe those fears have been realized: Only 5% report believing that their children have ever been engaged in addictive online behavior like excessive gaming, only 4% believe their kids have viewed pornography online, and less than 1% believe their kids have participated in cyber-bullying, sexting or inappropriate online communication with adults.
“The results of this survey were very encouraging,” said Nancy Hallberg, chief strategy officer of The Parenting Group. “Today’s moms are not fearful of technology and its growing role in their family’s lives – they view it not only as a tool to connect with other moms, but as a way to communicate with their children and teach them responsible ways to interact online.”
The study will appear in the September issue of Parenting magazine, on Parenting.com, and on BlogHer.com.
This appears to be all that’s online right now – but the Executive Summary PDF has some interesting tidbits. It clearly shows that these moms feel the benefits of technology outweigh the risks by creating new ways for them to communicate and model appropriate social connections with their children.
In other words – the moms are all right.
Might be an interesting topic for some back to school tech planning. For example, are we overestimating parental fear about online risks and other perceived negative effects of technology? Do we really know what they think these days? It could have changed drastically in the past few years as more and more parents find out that Facebook means stronger family and social connections. What does it mean now and in the future to policies and tech plans if our parents views are changing so quickly? Maybe schools should poll their own parents and ask some of these questions.