Web Log: Teenagers tend to be too trusting of search engines

Survey finds only 1% of 12-15-year-olds have ever signed an online petition

More than two-thirds of teenagers in a survey were unable to distinguish between search engine results and the sponsored links or ads featured above them as returned by Google

More than two-thirds of teenagers in a survey were unable to distinguish between search engine results and the sponsored links or ads featured above them as returned by Google

 

While the majority (72 per cent) of young teenagers (those aged 12-15) are wary of online interactions, believing most people behave differently online than they do in person, they appear to be too trusting of search engines.

A newly published report from UK telecoms industry regulator Ofcom found that 1 in 5 teens believed that if a search engine listed information, then it must be true. More worryingly, more than two-thirds were unable to distinguish between search engine results and the sponsored links or ads featured above them as returned by Google.

Additionally, cyberspace (as the old crusties refer to it) is not a utopia of engaged citizens, at least not for the younger user.

Only 1 per cent of 12-15-year-olds have ever signed an online petition or expressed their political or social views online. It seems as though they are too busy watching bloggers flog endorsed tat in the mistaken belief that it’s not paid for.

http://stakeholders.ofcom.org.uk/binaries/research/media-literacy/children-parents-nov-15/childrens_parents_nov2015.pdf