generation M and the mediated mind 03.10.2005, 8:52 PM
posted by ben vershbow
A major study of media consumption habits among American youth (ages 8-18) was released yesterday by the Kaiser Family Foundation. A "representative sample" of over 2,000 3rd through 12th graders were surveyed, including 700 who volunteered to maintain seven-day "media diaries," charting media consumption in half hour chunks, noting location, company they had, and any simultaneous activities. Findings were announced at a high-profile release in Washington attended by Hillary Clinton and other luminaries.
The study finds that kids are often multitasking - absorbing several media simultaneously, often at consoles set up in their bedrooms. Average daily exposure is a full third of the day (8.33 hours), which, when combined with approximately a third of the day at school and a third of the day asleep (although most kids are probably not sleeping that much), amounts to nearly every waking, extra-curricular hour spent tuned in, logged on, glued to, etc...
The evidence of multitasking paints a picture of a generation skilled at combining passive and interactive media - the TV is on, but you're also instant messaging with friends, and doing a bit of quick research on Google for that homework assignment. Constant skimming and constant scattering. Are these fractured minds in the making?
Posted by ben vershbow on March 10, 2005 8:52 PM
dan visel on March 14, 2005 1:37 PM:
There's an article in MIT's Technology Review about generational differences in playing video games - brings in literacy as well.