New research shows that more and more children are “split-screening” so they can watch multiple social media videos at once.
Not satisfied with their performance in such as Tik Tok and instagrammany young people now split their smartphone screens to see two or more at the same time.
Some even allegedly stacked videos on top of each other Communication BureauReport on children and media relations.
In some cases, the clips they watched at the same time weren’t even visibly connected.
The watchdog said the habit appeared to be an evolution of “multi-screen” behavior seen in its previous research, with children reporting difficulty concentrating on one screen-based activity at a time.
An Ofcom report found that 96% of children aged 3 to 17 watch online video.
More than half (58%) watch live content, rising to 80% among 16- and 17-year-olds.
Short videos are becoming more and more popular
9 out of 10 children watch youtubemore and more people are now turning to platforms dedicated to short videos, such as TikTok (53%) and live chat (46%).
Faced with the possible impact of excessive social media, both apps have introduced features to limit children’s use of the apps, Using Snapchat to Give Parents Access to Their Accounts.
TikTok has also been keen to promote its safety features, such as screen time limits, as it faces increasing scrutiny in the western world over data and privacy concerns.
Ofcom said the most popular children’s videos were designed to grab attention with minimal effort, such as those promising “comments” or “reactions” to other content.
Still, less than a third of children post videos of themselves online, according to the report.
As social media content gets better and influencers outfit their home studios with expensive equipment and software, young people are becoming more conscious about their online presence.
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Parents object to screen time
But older teens and young adults are starting to pay more attention to the time they spend online.
More than half of 16- to 24-year-olds believe they spend too much time on social media, up from 42% in 2021.
They are also more likely to intentionally break certain apps or remove them entirely, Ofcom said.
The report comes amid a divided government Online Safety Act through Westminster.
The wide-ranging legislation will give Ofcom powers to police internet content to keep people safe, including holding companies accountable for content on their platforms.