PARENTING + SOCIAL MEDIA: Mother’s Day 2013 Gadgetology Special Report



Is posting a Happy Mother’s Day message on mom’s Facebook page the new Mother’s Day card? In order to do that, parents and their children have to be Facebook friends and that can be potentially awkward. How do parents feel about “friending” their kids and how do parents feel about their kids even having their own Facebook page? We take on those questions and more in this special Mother’s Day Gadgetology report.








Half of Facebook-Using Parents Are Friends With Their Kids


When a 2010 Gadgetology study asked parents if they were Facebook friends with their children, 48% of Facebook-using parents said yes. Three years later that number has increased slightly to 50%. The number increases to about 67% for parents of teenagers and older children, which tells us that it’s a pretty widely accepted practice among parents and their children.


Moms take heart, you’re much more likely to be Facebook friends with your kids than dads are.


Teen-Age Years Appear to Be the Appropriate Age for Social Media


Despite the fact that it might be difficult for parents to prevent their children from creating and using their own Facebook page, it appears that most parents agree that children should wait until they are teenagers before entering the social networking world. We also found that parents of very young children who are most likely active social media users themselves, are slightly more conservative when indicating the age for a child’s first Facebook page with half as many as parents of older children saying 9 – 12 was old enough.


Is Social Media One More Thing for a Parent to Worry About?


The dangers of social media are on the minds of more than half the parents who responded to this study with 7% of them having good reason to do so. On the other hand almost half or the respondents said they weren’t losing any sleep over the perils of social media.


Most Parents Exercise Control Over Their Children’s Internet Use


It looks like most parents feel a need to restrict what their children can do online with more than 80% saying they control how their children use the Internet. A little over half of those parents say they use parental controls while the other half say they just tell their kids what they can and can’t do online.


Parents of Teenagers Are Checking Out Their Kids Dates Online



Although the majority of parents (69%) of children with children in the dating years say they don’t use Facebook to check out their kid’s dates it appears to have uncovered some disturbing information for the handful of parents who have taken advantage of amount of data mining available on social media sites like Facebook.


Texting During Family Meals is Very Restricted



When we asked the question whether texting was allowed at the dinner table three years ago, less than a third of the respondents said it wasn’t permitted. Three years later, if this study is any indication, there is virtually no texting taking place during family meals and that now means parents too.



As social media becomes more and more part of everyone’s lives, it’s no surprise that the majority of Facebook-users are “friends” with their children. We also found a healthy respect among parents for the risks of social media and see a general acceptance that children should be discouraged from getting involved with social media until they reach their teenage years.


About the Study:

The study was conducted via the Bizrate Insights survey platform and offered to online buyers immediately after purchasing from the Bizrate Insights Network of over 5,200 ecommerce retailers in the US and Canada. Data from this study was collected from 4,121 online buyers from April 19th – 22nd 2013.


About Retrevo: has been helping shoppers discover, evaluate and buy gadgets since 2006. The site offers product reviews, product ratings, editorial recommendations and other product landscape perspectives that inform what, when and where-to-buy decisions.