From Northwestern, a new study, “Children, Media, and Race: Exploring the Implications of Racial and Ethnic Differences in Media Use Among Children and Youth.” Check it out at http://web5.soc.northwestern.edu/cmhd/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/SOCconfReportSingleFinal-1.pdf
Here are some of the study’s insights. Be informed.
• Minority youth are especially avid adopters of new media, spending about an hour and a half more each day than White youth using their cell phones, iPods and other mobile devices to watch TV and videos, play games, and listen to music (a total of 3 hours and 7 minutes, or 3:07 in mobile media use among Asians, 2:53 among Hispanics, 2:52 among blacks, and 1:20 among whites).
• Traditional TV viewing remains the most popular of all media — with black and Hispanic youth consuming an average of more than three hours of live TV daily (3:23 for blacks, 3:08 for Hispanics, 2:28 for Asians and 2:14 for whites).
• TV viewing rates are even higher when data on time-shifting technologies such as TiVo, DVDs, and mobile and online viewing are included. Total daily television consumption then rises to 5:54 for black youth, 5:21 for Hispanics, 4:41 for Asians, and 3:36 for whites.
• Black and Hispanic youth are more likely to have TV sets in their bedrooms (84% of blacks, 77% of Hispanics compared to 64% of whites and Asians), and to have cable and premium channels available in their bedrooms (42% of blacks and 28% of Hispanics compared to 17% of whites and 14% of Asians).
• Minority youth eat more meals in front of the TV set — with 78% of black, 67% of Hispanic, 58% of white and 55% of Asian 8- to 18-year-olds reporting that the TV is “usually” on during meals at home.
• Trends such as TV sets in the bedroom and eating meals with the TV on begin at an early age. Black children under 6 are twice as likely to have a TV in their bedroom as whites and more than twice as likely to go to sleep with the TV on. Black children under 6 are almost three times as likely to eat dinner in front of the TV than white children the same age.
• Asian youth also are more likely to have computers at home (an average of 2.8 computers per home compared to 2.0 for whites and 1.8 for blacks and Hispanics) and are more likely to have a computer in their bedroom (55%, compared to 39% of Hispanics, 34% of blacks, and 32% of whites).
• No significant differences exist in the time young people spend using a computer for schoolwork, and only modest differences are evident in their tendency to multitask with media while doing homework. White, black and Hispanic youth average 16 minutes a day using a computer for schoolwork while Asians average 20 minutes (not a significant difference). The proportion of young people who report using entertainment media “most of the time” while doing homework ranges from 28% of whites and 30% of Asians to 35% of blacks and Hispanics.
• There are no significant differences in time spent by youth multi-tasking their media. For example, 37% of white, 44% of black and 41% of Hispanic middle and high school students report using another medium “most of the time” while watching TV.
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