anyone who works with teenagers knows that their cell phones have become an inseparable extension of their selves, a part of defining and experiencing relationships and life in general. but this article has some interesting insights into why most kids really can’t go without their phones for more than a day…
Teens text teens, talk to parents
Teens text teens, but for the adults in their lives, they flip them open to talk, said the girls. A lot of adults haven’t figured out how to use their cells to text or they have the “old-fashioned” cells that are only good for talking.
Anxious without their phones
Wired magazine recently published the results of a study by Context, a Baltimore company that uses anthropologists to study consumer trends. It asked 144 cellphone users ages 16 to 40 from several countries to give up their cellphones for a couple of days. Even the moderate users described the experience as one of “deprivation.” They felt anxious without their phones.
The phone is face to face for teens
When it came to the teen users or “mobiles” as the study coined them, it found teens who had no cells didn’t interact with the ones who did. The researchers didn’t think these “mobiles” were being deliberately rude, just that a “digital-divide” separated the two groups since the cellphone users saw little difference between meeting face-to-face and talking on the phone.
And some Canadian (ysmarko: the article is based on a canadian study) stats:
Young people ages 13 to 24 are the largest group of wireless phone users in Canada, according to statistics gathered by Decima Research.
Not every teen owns a cell, but 52 per cent of Canadian teens do have their own phone, according to research by Trendscan.
Teens spent 10 per cent less on clothing last year, allocating money to their cells, a NPD Group study reported.
More cellphone chatting and text messaging has meant fewer teens using online chat rooms, according to a study by Mobile Youth. Only 27 per cent now use Internet access to chat, down from a high of 75 per cent in 1999. Also 93 per cent of those surveyed now use text messaging every day . About three per cent send more than 40 messages a day.
(ht to ypulse)
my wife and i have been wrestling with our 14 year-old daughter’s texting use. she had a 200 texts/month limit, but has gone about 500 over that the last two months in a row. she’s had to pay the difference, which has been about $40 – $50 per month, draining her tiny stash of cash to nothing. but she doesn’t seem to mind at all, or see it as a waste of money. for liesl, it’s how she lives life in relationship with her friends. after lots of discussion, we’re letting her move to a 1500 texts/month plan, which she’ll gladly pay for herself.
oops – update since i wrote this last paragraph. my daughter was “mis-using” her texting, one might say (i would). so we’ve cancelled her texting plan for the rest of the school year.