* Nearly 80% of teenagers own cell phones, up 36% from 2005.Advantages to teen texting:
* The average age for getting a first cell phone is between 10 and 11; about 50% of kids 8 to 12 years old have one.
* Teens with cell phones average 2,272 texts per month (that works out to 75 per day), and only 203 calls.
* More than 40% say they can text blindfolded.
- Most carriers have a relatively inexpensive "unlimited texting" plan.
- You don't have to listen to the squealing of "Oh My God!" Instead teens can quietly text "OMG!"
- Texting can be more convenient because the recipient doesn't have to be available to answer right away (i.e., "Mom, I'll be home at 4:00.")
Downsides of teens texting:
- There is a whole new language to be learned that might be hard for parents to pick up.
- While talking on the phone at dinner isn't as much of an issue, texting has replaced this habit.
- Texting sexually suggestive or hateful messages might seem "safer" than other avenues because there is no face or voice. (even though they can be forwarded)
- Texting while driving is very unsafe (even if you can text blindfolded) and illegal in most states.
Like anything else, there is a time and a place for texting. I got a cell phone with a keyboard so I could take advantage of the benefits without having to memorize which numbers have which letters on the phone. I have found it to be very convenient for quick communication to friends and family with non-timely messages. As long as there is a level of etiquette with texting, I think it is a great form of communication.
What do you think about texting? Do you love it? Hate it? Don't get it? Wonder how to get rid of it?