Overall social media use has become a stable element of modern life for teens, but the patterns of use appear to shift as new cohorts reach their teen years. A new report from the Pew Research Center reports on the use of major social media platforms by U.S. 13 to 17 year olds. The report highlights, the decline in the proportion using Facebook, increases in the proportion using Instagram and Snapchat, and the emergence of TikTok as a major platform for teen users. These shifting patterns are the focus of the business and financial communities as they value the major social media competitors.
Although understanding these shifting patterns may also be useful for those interested in leveraging social media for learning opportunities, the stable position of YouTube as the most used social media platform among teens may be more important. YouTube has been used by 95% of teens and nearly 20% report using it almost constantly.
As we contemplate a transition from an era where education has been defined as mandatory to one where it may become a more voluntary activity, understanding where young people are most likely to “just show up” could be the key to a new learning delivery system.