The Atlantic: Instagram Is the New Evite. “When Mandy gets invited to a party, it’s not via Facebook invite, or email, or even text message. She’s 13, so, naturally, it’s through Instagram. Here’s how it works: When teenagers are planning a big party, they’ll sometimes create a new Instagram account, often with a handle that includes the date of the party, like @Nov17partyy or @SarahsBdayOctober27. The account will be set to private, and its bio will list the date of the party and sometimes the handles of the organizers. Sometimes it will include stipulations—for example, if it follows you, or approves your follow request, you’re invited.”
Pew (PEW PEW PEW PEW PEW PEW PEW!): Teens who are constantly online are just as likely to socialize with their friends offline. “Close to half of U.S. teens ages 13 to 17 say they are on the internet ‘almost constantly,’ and more than nine-in-ten are social media users. These highly plugged-in youth, however, are just as likely as their less-connected peers to socialize regularly with their friends in person, according to a new analysis of Pew Research Center survey data.”
Reuters: Facebook auction of South Sudan child bride could inspire other families: activists. “The auction of a South Sudanese girl for marriage on Facebook could spur other families to use social media to demand bigger dowries for their daughters, activists said, urging authorities and the social networking giant to take much tougher action.”
Pew (PEW PEW PEW PEW PEW!): Nearly one-in-five teens can’t always finish their homework because of the digital divide. “Some 15% of U.S. households with school-age children do not have a high-speed internet connection at home, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis of 2015 U.S. Census Bureau data. New survey findings from the Center also show that some teens are more likely to face digital hurdles when trying to complete their homework.”
Los Angeles Times: Guadalupe Rosales used Instagram to create an archive of Chicano youth of the ’90s — now it’s an art installation. “‘Veteranas and Rucas’ began as a lark. It was 2015 and Rosales posted a few ’90s images to Instagram and invited others to send in their own ‘throwback photos.’ Of that initial post, she says, ‘I was just trying to connect with my family and culture.’ The connections poured in. Readers from all over — Venice, El Monte, Santa Ana, Ontario and Boyle Heights — submitted hundreds of digital images. Others submitted physical photographs, articles of clothing and old party flyers. Soon after, as the submissions began to span multiple decades, she started a second Instagram account, Map Pointz, devoted specifically to ’90s party culture.” I mentioned Ms. Rosales back in 2016 — linking to a cached version of the article as the original is gone. Glad she’s getting more recognition.
Pew (no PEW PEW because I don’t like to joke about this): A Majority of Teens Have Experienced Some Form of Cyberbullying. “59% of U.S. teens have been bullied or harassed online, and a similar share says it’s a major problem for people their age. At the same time, teens mostly think teachers, social media companies and politicians are failing at addressing this issue.”
Quartz: The Oxford English Dictionary is opening its gates to teenage slang—via Twitter. “As a historical dictionary, the OED is interested in the meaning of words and also the changes in usage over time. To help produce its comprehensive record, OED has launched an appeal to teenagers to tweet or write in about the latest words that they’ve been using.”