Survey finds youngsters are addicted to social networkingPA


A new study has found a million youngsters aged seven to 12 are addicted to Facebook and log on once a day.

The poll reveals that around 970,000 children are on the social networking site and have made it an integral part of their lives.

And those who are not 'addicted' still use the site, with 46 per cent of children saying they sign into it 'occasionally'.

Only one in 20 kids say they never log on at all.

The study - undertaken by Mintel - found girls aged 10 to 12 are the most common young users of the site, with 54 per cent of them logging on.

The next most popular social networks for children are Twitter and Club Penguin, but their numbers are way below Facebook's, with only 10 per cent of kids using them.

Experts claim the popularity of social networking is down to peer pressure, with nearly two thirds of seven to 12-year-olds using a social network because their friends do.

Ina Mitskavets, author of the Children's Lifestyles report from Mintel, said: "Today's children are well versed in all aspects of the internet, with almost a million children aged seven to 12 using Facebook - highlighting just how popular the site has become."

Officially children should be aged 13 before creating a Facebook profile, but peer pressure means the actual age Facebooking begins is considerably younger.

How much time do your children spend on Facebook or other social networks?
Do you think they are addicted?