“Most of my friends can use Snapchat whenever they want; their parents don’t even know what Snapchat is”, quote from a fourteen year old teen.
We try, we ask questions and gather data and information from professionals and researchers about teens and their attitudes toward social media. We try, but as parents we can’t always keep up. Most of us are trying to stop our teens from using social media and have to focus on setting limits for our teens.
But what do they really think about social media?
Here is some feedback provided by teens themselves….
For teens these days, Facebook is for “old” people. They are not interested and can barely listen to their parents and other adults talk about Facebook, it is not part of their vocabulary. However, if we as parents think we know what our teens are doing because we are monitoring Facebook, think again.
Yes, teens love Instagram, they love the pictures and the postings. Most teens are inclined to use it but it is not by far the only form of social media being used. It is more specific and their friends are more likely to be picky about which pictures are posted and even better, more pictures are edited and less are posted as opposed to Facebook.
Now Twitter, some teens understand it and see the point and some don’t. Some love that they can follow and be followed by random people and even celebrities. It seems that everyone knows that if you want to be found or if you want others’ to know your thoughts, plans and every social concern, Twitter is the place to be.
Snapchat may be one of the most quickly growing social media outlets out there. Teens use Snapchat for everything these days, and assume that adults haven’t caught up that it even exists. Teens like to share their every moment, here I am getting ready, here I am heading to the party and here I am at the party. Apparently there is social pressure attached to Snapchat and teens still believe that adults don’t know that teens send inappropriate pictures that “disappear” through Snapchat. Recently more and more teens are choosing to text each other through Snapchat. And although some believe that the pictures disappear, most now there is some way to eventually access them.
Tumblr is like a secret society. There is a lot of anonymity and that is part of the appeal. Supposedly it is looked as “judgment free” but may teens have talked about some groups that started that way but have evolved into something less than unconditional. It is used many times as a place to meet new people and also meet new people with similar interests, questions and concerns.
It seems that Yik Yak is steadily growing and many college students have been using the application. There are no profiles and no followers. Everyone uses it to find out what is going on before and after class, checks it and wants to reference it. It seems that it is only as good as the local area you are in, so if you are in an area that there is not much going on, such as a college campus closed for the holiday, then most won’t be using the application.
Hopefully this can be used as information and even as a reference to learn and understand our teens. This information comes right from teens themselves, and there is much more information for us to learn about.