72% of parents have their child's Facebook password (infographic)

Summary:This infographic discusses the relationship between children and their parents on Facebook. Some of the statistics surprised me, given how little my parents know about the social network.

If you're a parent with a child who has a Facebook account, do you know his or her password? It turns out that some 72 percent of parents do in fact know how to access their offspring's account on the social network.

The findings come from Lab42, a market research company which surveyed 500 social media users between December 9 and December 12, 2011:

Guilty of stalking your child's Facebook page in your spare time? Or poking fun at your mom for that time she asked you what a Facebook wall was? Social networking is bringing an entirely new dimension to family interactions. At Lab42, we were especially curious how parent and child relationships played out on Facebook. We wanted to know exactly how parents communicated with their children on Facebook, and if they had concerns about their children's use of the site. To get the details, we surveyed parents with Facebook accounts.

The online survey was conducted via social networks, but because it is not based on a probability sample, no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. In other words, take the results with a grain of salt. If you prefer text to infographic, here's what the firm found:

  • 92 percent of parents are Facebook friends with their children.
  • Of those parents, 55 percent the Friend Request and 45 percent received it.
  • 50 percent of parents are engaging with brands and products on Facebook.

There's more. Parents say they look at their kid's Facebook profile for the following reasons: Safety (40 percent), Curiosity (15 percent), Both (41 percent), and Other (4 percent). As for how often, the breakup looks like this: daily (43 percent), 4-5 times per week (31 percent), once per month (11 percent), sporadically (14 percent), and never (1 percent).

What are parents concerned about? 56 percent believe Facebook is a distraction from homework, chores, or other activities. 45 percent believe their children aren't spending enough time with friends and family because of Facebook. 41 percent think their children are meeting strangers on Facebook. 24 percent don't have any concerns regarding their children's Facebook use, but some are worried about bullying: thinking their children are doing the bullying (17 percent) or are being bullied (16 percent).

As for interacting on Facebook, 55 percent of parents write on their child's Wall, 54 percent of children write on their parents' Wall, and 51 percent of each group comment on each other's photos. On the flipside, 29 percent of parents can only see their child's limited profile.

Last but not least, parents were asked to rate their Facebook proficiency: I know how to do almost everything (63 percent), I know all the basic functions (32 percent), and I still have a lot to learn (5 percent). 24 parents said they get made fun of by their children for lack of Facebook knowledge.

My mother is not on Facebook but my father just joined this month to find a friend. We are not friends on the site. What's your experience with parents on Facebook?

See also:

Topics: Social Enterprise

About

Emil is a freelance journalist writing for CNET and ZDNet. Over the years, he has covered the tech industry for multiple publications, including Ars Technica, Neowin, and TechSpot.

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