Many Icelandic teenagers spend four or more hours per day on social media, according to the results of a new survey of 13 to 15-year-old children in Iceland. The survey took place during school hours. All children who were present that day answered the survey, or 11,033 children, visir.is reports.
Roughly 14 percent of participants in the Reykjavík capital area and 15 percent in the countryside said that they spent on average four hours or more on social media, including Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat, per day.
The research study, called ‘Young People 2014,’ also found that 10 percent of participants reported having received hateful or offensive messages from individuals or groups via the internet on three or more occasions.
Hrefna Sigurjónsdóttir, director of the National Parent’s Association of Iceland, ‘Home and School,’ (Heimili og skóli), says that many people come to them regarding cyber bullying. “Many children who we are speaking with say that they have had enough,” she says.
Hrefna warned that if children spend so long on the internet, they have little time for anything else and that it is important for them to spend time with their parents.
The amount of time children spend on the internet has increased substantially since 2006 while the amount of time children spend with their parents has dropped. In 1997, 21 percent of 14 and 15-year-old boys reported often or almost always spending time with their parents on week days while only 49 percent reported doing so in 2014.
The vast majority of Icelanders, or 97 percent, use the internet, making the nation the most connected in Europe.