How Adolescents See Adults Seeing Adolescents’ Texting

The new volume of Sociological Studies of Children and Youth, entitled “Technology and Youth: Growing Up in a Digital World,” explores the role of technology in the lives of children and adolescents and the profound changes that the rapid pace of technological advancement in the last decade have caused to their lives.

Around the globe, children and adolescents are often seen as being the first to embrace new technologies, such as new forms of social media. Having a cell phone, once regarded as an adult technology, has become a necessity within youth culture in many societies.

In the chapter, “’That is SO not True’: Adolescent Perspectives of Adult Misconceptions of Teen Text Messaging,” the authors asked a sample of high school students about their texting habits and how they felt adults viewed them. The results clearly illustrate that adults often have little understanding of what adolescents are actually doing, and their fears about such behaviors as “sexting” are typically not based upon realistic assessments of teen’s actual cell phone use.

The below animation summarizes some of the findings of this research. The chapter is available to access for free until 31st October 2015.

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