ym360 Trends and Culture Update (Vol 17)
At ym360, we're committed to equipping youth workers. While most of our energy is dedicated to doing this in the areas of Bible Study Resources and Training, we believe it's valuable for youth workers and parents to stay in the loop on what is happening in youth culture and culture in general. (Read why we think it's important here.) A couple times a month, we'll do a post like this one, where we link to relevant articles and studies that give you a better glimpse into the world teenagers are living in. [Note: By nature, some of the articles and subject matter we deal with in Trends & Culture often conflicts with our beliefs and ethics as Christ-followers. Our purpose in linking to this type of material is to simply give you the option of knowing the culture your students are surrounded by. Use discretion to determine which links to click on.] We'd love to know that we're not just equipping you, but those you serve, as well. Consider using this article to equip your community in the following ways:
- Email this link to your adult volunteers
- Repost it on your blog or church website
- Email the link to all your parents to help equip them to better understand their teen's world
- SHARE IT with your youth ministry networks. This is a great way to help your peeps!
Without further ado, here are some relevant links we think you should know about.
Some Social Media & Tech News
- Folks are asking if Facebook's growth is sliding. There are some interesting numbers that show a 6 Million user loss in "markets where it's been around the longest." But, in developing markets, it's growing. Facebook disputed the numbers. What to make of it? Who knows . . . Facebook isn't going anywhere, especially as they prepare to launch an IPO and are looking to add enhanced media services. Interesting to watch though . . . (h/tYPulse)
- In other Facebook news, this fascinating new study from Pew shows that Facebook users are more trusting, have more close relationships in the "real" world, and get more social support than non-Facebook users.
- This article from Fast Company makes the case that video game playing is the new "playing catch." What do you think about this? (h/t YPulse)
- Nintendo announces Wii U. And though there is no price or release date yet, it looks awesome. My bet is that you'll be seeing these in youth group, for sure. (h/t TrendWatch)
- Teenagers are watching TV less than in years passed. From this study: "In the fourth quarter of 2010, the average American spent 34 hours and 39 minutes a week in front of the traditional tube. But for teens (defined as ages 12 to 17), TV-watching time was only 23 hours and 41 minutes per week."
A Glance At Recent Research
- This study is really, really telling about teenager's online behaviors. Too many cool stats to pull any specific one out. Check this link out. It's really quite fascinating.
- In light of the new study by the WHO strongly suggesting a link between cell phones and cancer, Pew Internet says that teenager's propensity to text may not be such a bad thing after all.
- New research shows that hit songs activate pleasure, reward centers in adolescent brains. This explains the phenomenon of kids being able to not get that popular tune out of their heads. (h/t CPYU)
- An interesting Canadian study shows that more students see their parents as voices of reason when it comes to sex than they do their friends. Furthermore, the survey found that teenagers who look to friends as role models for sexual mores are more sexually active.
- University of Iowa study shows a link between divorce rate and losing virginity as a teenager. For women, teen sex translates into a higher divorce rate, especially if the first-time sex was unwanted or something that generated mixed-feelings.
The World of Youth-Culture & Entertainment
- Justin Bieber has earned $53 million since May 2010. That's some serious money. And it's enough to put the Biebs on Forbes Best-Paid celebrities under 30. (h/t JSYK.com)
- If you want a glimpse into what tons of teenagers are listening to, here's a link to Billboard's Hot 100. Adele tops the charts this week, followed by some of the usual suspects. Music is such an influential force in students' lives. It's probably not a bad idea to be familiar with what students (or their friends) are listening to so that you can help them become more discerning about how interaction with culture impacts their faith.
That's it for this edition of the ym360 Trends & Culture report. Look for another one the week of July 4th.
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Any specific study or link stand out to you? Disagree with anything? Let us know by sharing your thoughts below.