Associations between parental monitoring and parents’ social media use and social media perceptions

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To date, much remains unknown about how parents' own experiences with social media shape whether and how they monitor social media use by their teens. This study investigated how parents' social media use and parents' emotional responses to content impacted parental monitoring. This study assessed five monitoring outcomes: parent-child communication, intrusive measures, frequency of monitoring, solicitation, and rule-setting. Participants were 525 Pennsylvania parents with a child aged 12 to 17 in their household who completed a web survey in 2019. Parents who used a greater variety of platforms were more likely to ask their children about social media use and used more privacy-violating strategies like tracking apps. Active users more frequently monitored teens' use and set more rules about use. Parents who felt inspired by what they saw on social media monitored their teens’ social media use more closely and felt much more positively about the impact of social media on teens today. Parents who believed social media made them more connected with others felt much more positively as well. Those who felt angered by social media content felt more negatively about how social media might impact teens.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number100294
JournalSocial Sciences and Humanities Open
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Decision Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Psychology (miscellaneous)

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