social appsPlease feel free to comment at the bottom of this article with your thoughts before, during, or after the show.

What is #Being13 or #BeingThirteen?

CNN special report “#Being13: Inside the Secret World of Teens” airs October 5 at 9PM. See the press release here. The video below describes #Being13:

Is social media safe for 13yr olds?

An awful lot of parents are oblivious to what their kids do on social media and will likely be surprised at what they see on #Being13. Some are trying to respect their kid’s privacy and others are not paying close enough attention. Regardless, if it is “safe” or not, at the end of the day, is up to every parent to decide for themselves.

Opinions aside lets go with some facts:

  • Studies show people who check status updates several times per day are often distracted, stressed, and depressed.
  • Go on to Instagram and search for a hashtag such as #snapchat. With one finger swipe you will immediately see hundreds of X rated images. I am 38 years old and much of the content disturbs me. Is this suitable for your teen? Would you let them watch this on TV?
  • Many teens unfortunately use social as a popularity contest of sorts.

How are 13yr olds and other teens using social media?

Social usage changes in different areas of the US (and the world) but I’m pretty sure #Being13 will reveal that most kids use a wide variety of social apps. In my neck of the woods Facebook is completely dead and Instagram and Snapchat are the apps of choice. The article How to Find Out What My Child is Doing on Social Media points out that in general the “mass¬†exodus from Facebook” was due to teenagers desire to say waht they want without their parents and grandparents seeing it. Which, would be weird.

Highlights from #Being13

As highlights of the show are brought up I will post them here.

  • Some teens check their social media profiles over 200 times a day
  • Some teens buy likes and followers
  • 57% of kids in the study would rather be grounded from the real world than their phone
  • 94% of parents in the study underestimated the amount of fighting online
  • Marion Underwood, Clinical Psychologist notes that social can in general be a positive experience

What did you learn from #Being13 and will it change anything?

What did you gain from #Being13?

Do you follow your kids on Instagram?

What did you find the most surprising?

  1. My 13 year old does not act like this.

  2. Can I stream this online somewhere?

  3. Sociology professor Bob Faris is on twitter right now here: @bobfaris

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