According to new research, as many as 40% of teenage girls stated that Facebook played a major part in their lives and was more influential to them than magazines, TV and even their own siblings. This compares with just 6% of teenage boys who said that Facebook was a major part of their lives.
The research was conducted by National Family Week and included girls and boys aged between 8 and 15 years of age. While teenage girls expressed how important Facebook was to their lives, parents seemed wholly ignorant to just what a vital part the social networking website was playing in their children’s lives.
The survey also showed that Facebook played a bigger role in the lives of children whose parents were divorced and they were being brought up by one parent.
The survey was conducted in April this year and included 1000 children and 3000 parents in the UK. When teenage girls were asked what were the most important things in their lives, their friends, their family and Facebook topped the list – followed by MSN Messenger, a chat system used to keep in touch with friends over the Internet.
Boys were found to be more family orientated, with 73% of boys choosing family as the most important thing in their lives. Only 53% of girls said the same. Facebook isn’t as important to boys, with just 6% saying it was important enough to be in their top three. Boys seemed to prefer friends and money to social networking.
Perhaps surprising is the fact that girls believe technology is important in their lives, with 41% of girls stating that technology (such as mobile phones) has a major influence on them. Only 17% of boys stated that technology was important to them.
Both boys and girls believe that their parents are the biggest influence on their lives however.
The results are perhaps surprising considering that Facebook only allows people to register as members when they are least 13. These figures suggest that many people under that age are members.
How important is Facebook to you?