Thursday, October 23, 2008

From the 20th Century T.V. Dinner Families to 21st Century Networked Families!

PEW Internet & American Life Project, has released a new report on 21st Century families and how digital media and tools are affecting the family unit. Below I've listed a few of the highlights.

Digital media has created a new connectedness in American families
Instead of technology pulling families apart, PEW found that it is bringing families together (although differently than in the 20th Century). American families with cell phones are in touch more often than ever and created a common bond from mobile exchanges throughout the day when they are not together. It allows for easy coordination and the ability for families and parents to touch-base throughout the day.
  • 95% of married couples with minor children has cell phones in household (10% more than married couples without minor children)
  • 93% of married couples with minor children have a computer in household (compared to 77% of married couples without minor children)
  • 66% of married couples with minor children have broadband Internet access at home
  • 89% of married couples with minor children own multiple cell phones
  • 57% of the married couples minor children (ages 7-17) have their own cell phones
  • Children who have cell phones are somewhat less likely to go online
  • 58% of married couples with minor children own two or more computers
  • 70% of couples who both own a cell phone contact each other once a day or more to
    say hello or chat; 54% of couples who have one or no cell phones do this at least
    once a day.
  • 42% of parents contact their child/children daily using a cell phone (compared to
    35% using a landline telephone)
People say that new communication has blurred traditional lines between “work” and “home.”
While overwhelmingly people seemed to feel that technologies help them stay connected, they also felt that these technologies like the cell phone have really blurred the lines between the personal and professional world.

  • 40% of everyone surveyed said they felt an increase in the amount of contact they had with co-workers as a result of cell phones and Internet.

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