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Teens’ blogging shows little risky behaviour.

Byline: ANI

Washington, March 25 (ANI): A new
Ohio State University
 main campus at Columbus; land-grant and state supported; coeducational; chartered 1870, opened 1873 as Ohio Agricultural and Mechanical College, renamed 1878. There are also campuses at Lima, Mansfield, Marion, and Newark.
 study of
100 teen bloggers from around the US found that a majority used blogs to
develop Relationships with their peers and build a sense of community,
rather than to admit


The research has appeared in the current issue of the Child and
Adolescent Social Work Journal.

According to

1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of:

2. In keeping with:

 Dawn Anderson-Butcher, associate professor of social
work at Ohio State, the findings suggests that blogging could be used
therapeutically to help troubled teens express themselves in positive

Anderson-Butcher and her students analysed blog posts from the
public Web site Xanga ( for a month, to find out
whether teens blogged about risky behaviours, such as skipping school,
doing drugs, or having sex.

The researchers found most teens in the study blogged about
positive behaviours, such as studying, participating in school
activities, spending time with family, and going to church.
Anderson-Butcher said: “We looked at every quote, and the kids
wrote about very few problem behaviors.

“They showed a lot of creative expression through poetry,
lyrics and song. It was very exciting-and for me, positive-to see the
typical developmental activities that they were writing about in their

While the researchers couldn’t know whether parents were
supervising the Xanga blogs used in this study, the teens were clearly
writing blog entries as messages to their peers.

Among the most common positive activities the teens described were
video games

 (65 percent); watching television (45 percent);
doing homework (40 percent); going to lessons, such as music, dance, or
martial arts (38 percent); browsing the Internet (29 percent); and
participating in faith-based activities (22 percent).

Anderson-Butcher said even the teens’ most common complaint –
boredom (65 percent) – was not such a bad thing if they were blogging
about it instead of engaging in risky behaviours.

She said: “Think about the other things they could be doing.
We know that when kids are bored, mostly between the hours of 3:00-6:00
p.m., that’s when they’re most at risk for using alcohol or
having sex, for example. It’s the time when their parents are
working and they are often unsupervised. But instead these youth sought
out social expression via Xanga.

“So that’s definitely a positive. They’re filling
their time with this
social networking


Some teens posted to Xanga every day, while others only posted once
or twice during the month used in the study.

Teens also described some negative feelings, such as feeling blue
(30 percent); feeling angry (28 percent); and feeling like they
don’t fit in (22 percent). They complained that they didn’t
want to do their homework (16 percent), and worried about getting bad
grades (11 percent).

Very few mentioned cutting class (8 percent); using drugs, alcohol,
or cigarettes (6 percent); or having sex (1 percent).

Anderson-Butcher firmly believes parents should supervise their
kids’ blogs, even making such supervision a condition of blogging.
That way, parents can notice problems when they come up in the blog.

The blog data in this study came from 2007. Xanga is less popular
with the majority of teens now “micro-blogging” their
activities on Facebook.

Anderson-Butcher said she cannot replicate the study on Facebook,
however, because unlike Xanga, it offers
safety measures actions (e.g., use of glasses, face masks) taken to protect patients and office personnel from such known hazards as particles and aerosols from high-speed rotary instruments, mercury vapor, radiation exposure, anesthetic and
 to keep
strangers from reading kids’ profiles.

She said: “That’s a good thing in relation to privacy.

“It just means we aren’t able to access the data as
freely.” (ANI)

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Asian News International

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