A study about kids and videogaming just published in the Journal of Adolescent Health found benefits for girls who play with their parents (and no real upside for boys). Slightly surprising to the authors, they told the Vancouver Sun they found “an increase in pro-social behaviour, a decrease in aggression and a stronger bond with parents. But when it came to boys, the study found absolutely no statistical difference in behaviour, regardless of whether a boy played alone, with a friend or a parent.” [I loved the Sun's lede: "Time to share the Xbox, Dad" (or rather buy another controller!).] The researchers said they could only speculate about the difference at this point but thought it may partly be because boys play so much more than girls that playtime with parents is like a “drop in the bucket.” They also speculate it might have to do with the types of games played. Girls, they say, play more “cooperative” games such as Mario games and Guitar Hero, while boys are more into “violent games such as Call of Duty and Halo.” (Hmm, hope there’s no gender bias, there.) In its coverage, a Wall Street Journal blog, mentioned one qualifier: “The researchers only found benefits when the games were age-appropriate.” Parents and daughters seem to bond less when playing M-rated games (M for “Mature”), whose intensity, the researchers, say may reduce the kind of communication that allows for “heightened levels of connection. But maybe players of M games connect in a different way, maybe over a slightly longer period of time?
NetFamilyNews – by Anne Collier
- Students called heroes in this 6th-grade class
- In the face of school violence, what do we default to?
- Popularity: The other kind of vulnerability
- FB & Oculus VR: The potential of a virtual-reality platform
- What’s (importantly) different about Snapchat
- We ‘like’ faces in social media: Study
- Yik Yak update: How the app came to geo-fence off US schools
- Smart safety: YouTube’s ‘neighborhood watch program’
Analysis & News – by Larry Magid
- Identity theft a problem from cradle to grave — Kids most vulnerable
- How to protect your family from Heartbleed security flaw (slideshow)
- Beware of Heartbleed inspired phishing scams
- Are sites you use vulnerable to Heartbleed security flaw?
- Microsoft ends support of Windows XP: Machines highly vulnerable to security risks
- The evolution of online safety: Lessons learned over 20 years
- Safety through mindfulness: Watch ‘The Science of Character’
- Adults spend 11 hour a day using electronic media