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J Adolesc Health. 2000 Aug;27(2 Suppl):8-14.

Media and youth: access, exposure, and privatization.

Author information

1
Department of Communication, Stanford University, Stanford 94305, California, USA. droberts@leland.stanford.edu

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To describe U.S. youth's access and exposure to the full array of media, as well as the social contexts in which media exposure occurs.

METHODS:

A cross-sectional national random sample of 2065 adolescents aged 8 through 18 years, including oversamples of African-American and Hispanic youth, completed questionnaires about use of television, videotapes, movies, computers, video games, radio, compact discs, tape players, books, newspapers, and magazines.

RESULTS:

U.S. youngsters are immersed in media. Most households contain most media (computers and video game systems are the exception); the majority of youth have their own personal media. The average youth devotes 6 3/4 h to media; simultaneous use of multiple media increases exposure to 8 h of media messages daily. Overall, media exposure and exposure to individual media vary as a function of age, gender, race/ethnicity, and family socioeconomic level. Television remains the dominant medium. About one-half of the youth sampled uses a computer daily. A substantial proportion of children's and adolescents' media use occurs in the absence of parents.

CONCLUSIONS:

American youth devote more time to media than to any other waking activity, as much as one-third of each day. This demands increased parental attention and research into the effects of such extensive exposure.

PMID:
10904200
DOI:
10.1016/s1054-139x(00)00128-2
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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