Internet & Digital Media Use
The Women’s Media Center works with the media to ensure that women’s stories are told and women’s voices are heard. WMC provides or participates in media advocacy campaigns, media monitoring for sexism, creating original content, and training women and girls to participate in media. They are directly engaged with the media at all levels to ensure that a diverse group of women is present in newsrooms, on air, in print and online, in film, entertainment, and theater, as sources and subjects.
USC Annenberg Center for the Digital Future conducts long-term longitudinal studies on the impact of computers, the Internet and related technologies on families and society. The results from the first year of the project were released to nationwide acclaim in October 2000 and the project continues using a combination of well-accepted scientific survey methods and techniques for social science data analysis.
The Pew Internet & American Life Project is one of seven projects that make up the Pew Research Center, a nonpartisan, nonprofit “fact tank” that provides information on the issues, attitudes and trends shaping America and the world. The Project produces reports exploring the impact of the internet on families, communities, work and home, daily life, education, health care, and civic and political life. The quality of their work is outstanding—this is the place to look for great research on teens and digital media.
The Berkman Center for Internet & Society was formed at Harvard University to explore and understand cyberspace; to study its development, dynamics, norms, and standards; and to assess the need or lack thereof for laws and sanctions. This is one of the best nonprofit research sites on the Internet.
The Benton Foundation aims to articulate a public interest vision for the digital age and to demonstrate the value of communications for solving social problems. There is good information here about policy discussions on digital media.
The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation is a non-profit, private operating foundation focusing on the major health care issues facing the nation. The Foundation is an independent voice and source of facts and analysis for policymakers, the media, the health care community, and the general public. The link above goes directly to the Foundation’s study on children and Internet use. The Foundation is not associated with Kaiser Permanente or Kaiser Industries. The Foundation also has research on child and television use at http//www.kff.org/entmedia/tv.cfm.
Wired Kids, Inc. is a U.S. charity dedicated to protecting all Internet users, especially children, from cybercrime and abuse. It operates several programs and Web sites designed to help everyone learn how to protect their privacy and security online and to teach responsible Internet use.
See Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation description above. This link is for Kids & Media at the New Millennium, one of the most comprehensive national public studies ever conducted of young people’s media use. The study, based on a nationally representative sample of more than 3,000 children ages 2 -18, shows how much time kids spend watching TV and movies, using computers, playing video games, listening to music, and reading.
ScreenIt.com provides information to parents about movie content prior to their kids viewing the material. While I don’t usually provide links to paid sites, this might be of interest to parents who want to get detailed information before you allow certain movies to be viewed. A yearly subscription is about $50, as of 2012.
The Search Institute assists families and educators to maximize the benefits and minimize the harm of mass media on children through research, education and advocacy. This is a good site to help you make wise media choices.