Summertime seems to be ushering in a drop off in facebook traffic amongst the 18-25 set, although they still remain the dominant demographic. The last 30 days has seen a 3% drop in traffic among the college crowd, but it has also produced a bump of 1.5 million users among those over 35.According to some usage figures, active facebook users in the US now total 70 million, with 60% of them over 26.
When I speak in schools and to education trade groups, one of the biggest things I hear from parents is that they are afraid of what their kids are doing online. But a lot of this fear comes from a lack of knowledge. In other words, the parents themselves have not taken the time to jump on facebook or one of the other social networking services to see what all the fuss is about. Well, that might be changing. The popular parenting site Babycenter recently completed a pretty extensive study about the uptake among moms and they say that moms who use social media is up 462% since 2006. As always, these numbers should be kept in perspective since in 2006, the overall usage numbers of social media was nowhere near where it is today.
The more parents, teachers and administrators educate THEMSELVES about social networking, the better chance we will all have to help our kids become digitally savvy adults. Kids might get bummed out being “friended” by their parents or another adult relative. But it’s worth it if the end result is that we, as adults, learn the facts about living our lives online instead of responding to misinformation and negative hype.