Teens and Mobile Phones

“The Text Generation” is New Zealand’s most comprehensive survey on teen cellphone use, released today by NetSafe, the Internet Safety Group. Once again we’re reminded quite how central mobiles are in young people’s lives – and there’s no reason to suggest that Kiwi Teens are any different from anywhere else. Well, apart from the sheep thing, obviously.

Some quite surprising snippets, even for jaded mobile watchers:

41% had “no idea” how big their monthly spending was on mobile charges. The highest was $1,900 (US $1,350) a month. One kid admitted spending $1,800 a month, mainly on sex lines and stole money to support his habit.

Actually 13% said they stole to pay their bills.

Text bullying seems to be a big concern/issue.

Nearly half had started a relationship by mobile and 25% had finished one that way.

29% used them in class time, including taking unflattering pics of teachers and recording their teachers outbursts and rants for later sharing.

2% claimed their parents didn’t know they had a mobile.

So, if you want to control a teen in your life – just threaten to take away their phone for a while. You’ll kill their social life, their sex life and their blackmail-the-teacher material.

Source: New Zealand Herald

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