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Survey says…Parents both admire and worry about kids’ digital media savvy

A new poll from Common Sense Media and the Joan Ganz Cooney Center shows that US parents know how important digital media skills are for their children.
May 9, 2008

A new poll from Common Sense Media and the Joan Ganz Cooney Center shows that US parents know how important digital media skills are for their children.

Three out of four parents surveyed agreed that knowing how to navigate various digital media outlets is as beneficial to kids as mastering traditional skills like reading, writing and math.

But the study also revealed a strong scepticism about whether digital media can teach kids how to thrive socially. A full 67% of parents said they did not think the internet helped teach their kids to communicate more effectively; 87% of parents said they did not believe the internet helped their kids learn how to work with others; and 75% do not believe the web can teach kids to be responsible in their communities.

Jim Steyer, CEO and founder of Common Sense Media, says the findings indicate that parents are trying to catch up with the technological advances that their children more easily adapt to. ‘When it comes to digital media in kids’ lives, it’s a confusing time to be a parent,’ he explains. ‘Clearly, parents seem to understand that the wold has fundamentally changed and that kids need digital media to be successful…But, the results suggest that parents still have reservations about how their kids engage with each other using digital media.’

The poll included a nationally representative sample of 695 parents, as well as an illustrative sample of 245 teachers. Further details of the study can be found at www.commonsensemedia.org .

About The Author
Gary Rusak is a freelance writer based in Toronto. He has covered the kids entertainment industry for the last decade with a special interest in licensing, retail and consumer products. You can reach him at garyrusak@gmail.com

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