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Teens Actually Care About Online Privacy 93

CowboyRobot writes "According to a new report by Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project, more than half of American teenagers have steered clear of a mobile app due to worries about privacy. Some 56 percent of younger teens (ages 12 to 14) who use mobile apps avoid some apps after learning they had to share personal information to use it, while 49 percent of older teens (14 to 17) have. Also, teens who had at some point sought outside advice about privacy management were considerably more likely than those who had not sought advice to say that they had disabled location tracking features."
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Teens Actually Care About Online Privacy

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  • by recrudescence ( 1383489 ) on Saturday August 24, 2013 @04:25PM (#44665591)
    Just saying, slight bias in their conclusion.
  • Parents (Score:2, Funny)

    by SINternet ( 1194899 )
    Teen online privacy really only applies to Parents.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      Don't forget about us pedophiles.

      • Don't forget about us pedophiles.

        Pedophilia is an attraction to prepubescent children, not teenagers. If you are an adult male and feel sexually attracted to teenage women, you are normal. Acting on that attraction may make you a criminal, but it will not make you a pedophile.

        • As a hetero male, you have gotten sucked into the whole "young girls are the only attractive females" shit. Let me say from experience of young girls in both my younger years and my 40s, I stay far away from them. Why? Are they ugly? Well, not on the outside, but dumb as a rock on the inside. It takes 'em years to reach maturity and to have anything valuable and important to add to a post -coital conversation. Seriously.

  • Good to hear! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 24, 2013 @04:27PM (#44665599)

    I'm happy with half. Most people are idiots. Nearly half of any group not being a total idiot has to count as a win.
    Never really could reconcile this generation's seemingly blase attitude towards anonymity with my own generation's take on the internet. I was a teen when the internet became A Thing, and all us kids were completely fucking enamored with the anonymity. A place where we weren't judged by our age, merely by our worth? FUCKIN' A! Perfect!

    • Half is too low. We should aim for 90% being smart enough to value privacy.

      • Half is too low. We should aim for 90% being smart enough to value privacy.

        90% is too high, even for slashdotters. Need proof? Replace your proposed goal headline:
        [90% of ] Teens actually [being smart enough to ] care about online privacy
        [90% of ] SLASHDOTTERS actually [being smart enough to ] care about online privacy

        The latter headline is only true after you append "and avoid having opened social network accounts in the first place." Most people here openly admin that this "secures" their accounts:
        used only with immediate family and trusted(tm) single-digit friends
        has a fake

    • Most people are idiots.

      You know, before the advent of the social networks we've been told this by our older parents and/or friends.
      Today, we know the names and surnames.

  • But... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Pollux ( 102520 ) <speter&tedata,net,eg> on Saturday August 24, 2013 @04:28PM (#44665607) Journal

    Did they weigh that variable at all against what percentage of their peers used the app? To what extent do kids care about privacy in the face of peer pressure?

    Facebook demands substantial personal information about you, but last I checked, it's still the most popular social networking app kids use.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      I don't know if you have kids, but the teens I know are moving away from FB and to things like Twitter, Snapchat, Facetime, and G+ Meetups.

    • by Seumas ( 6865 )

      I dunno. I keep hearing that kids don't use the phone anymore. But I also constantly see stories that they don't use twitter anymore (it's for old people). And stories that they don't use facebook anymore (that's for old people). Apparently, teens don't use the internet at all or something, because "that's for old people".

      Frankly, if other people's kids want to be a natural resource for governments and industries to exploit, then go for it.

    • If only the NSA database were opt-in.

  • Logical enough... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by fuzzyfuzzyfungus ( 1223518 ) on Saturday August 24, 2013 @04:32PM (#44665617) Journal
    I'm mostly unimpressed by the twee nonsense about kids these days being 'digital natives' or something, imbued with mysterious computer-using powers (sure, kids these days are almost all users, unlike older age brackets that have holdouts; but the bar is not high for 'using technology', thanks to years of dedicated UI polishing and idiot-proofing, so only the usual much smaller percentage of nerds have any reason to go beyond trivial levels of knowledge); but it seems perfectly reasonable that they'd be a relatively privacy-conscious group.

    After all, kids are among the demographics most likely to be surveilled and to be punished or otherwise restricted based on that surveillance. Parents, teachers/admins, peers, present or near-future employers and college admissions officers, cops (whether they just come and break up that party you foolishly put on facebook or whether you are already familiar with being stop-and-frisked depends on other demographic variables, of course), all actively watching and frequently acting on that.

    Adults are still pretty heavily watched; but the range of banal behavior they can engage in without consequence is substantially greater.
    • by aitikin ( 909209 )
      Yeah, I mean, if you told me when I was a kid that my parents could find out where I am and figure out what I was doing or I could turn off this one little feature (the second link used location data as frame of reference) and they'd have no further capabilities...which do you think would happen? (yes I know, it's not that easy, but it's still the naiveté of youth that would lead me to have thought that at 12).
      • by Kjella ( 173770 )

        The whole issue didn't exist when I was 12, the way to turn off location tracking was "hey mom, we're going out to play", no cell phone, no beacon. Sometimes we did have a specific place in mind, sometimes we didn't, sometimes it changed on the way so really the only reliable information was that if we said we'd be back at seven we made sure to be back at seven. And nobody had phone cameras, okay we had a family camera that took film that needed developing but it wasn't going to be around. If you did stupid

        • On atleast 4 occasions when I was a kid, I was so late getting home that my mom called the police to report me missing. And in every instance, by the time the (same) police officer arrived, I had already come home and was standing next to her.

          Eventually they just started telling her to wait 30 minutes and call back if I was still missing.

    • Re:Logical enough... (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Seumas ( 6865 ) on Saturday August 24, 2013 @05:01PM (#44665797)

      Exactly this. The media puts out this idea that because kids use more technology than kids of any other generation, it somehow equates to them being more technologically capable. I'm sorry, but kids using an iPad to play a game or their PC for twitter and WoW are not the same thing as kids knowing how a computer works, how to setup a router, debugging networking issues, writing code, and so on.

      Further, I do not believe that most kids give a fuck about privacy, because their actions don't follow that claim. Further, these are the same age groups that were polled a few years ago and said they felt that the press had too much free speech and the government should do something about it.

      That said, it has become trendy (thanks to reddit) for young people to suddenly give a fuck about things like their privacy. So . . . I guess there's that.

      • I'm sorry, but kids using an iPad to play a game or their PC for twitter and WoW are not the same thing as kids knowing how a computer works, how to setup a router, debugging networking issues, writing code, and so on.

        Be careful. You may be overestimating the importance of knowing how to "setup a router, debugging network issues, writing code, and so on", when it comes to being technically savvy. If you want to write code, then writing code is important, but I know plenty of people who can write efficien

        • by Nemyst ( 1383049 )
          You're claiming that being technically savvy is equivalent to chasing the latest fashion. I'm sorry but that's not savvy, it's trendy.

          It's not because Cobol is an old, horrible language that people who know it aren't technically savvy. On the contrary, how few people would want to learn Cobol these days? On the flip side, knowing Twitter talk or knowing how to use the thing mean very little when it's going to get replaced by something else in the next few years (just like it's replaced something else). Oh
          • You're claiming that being technically savvy is equivalent to chasing the latest fashion.

            Not many are as guilty of "chasing the latest fashion" as software developers.

        • Nonsense. It is foolish to conflate proficiency with a tool, albeit a common one, with native scientific understanding of said tool.

          Does your average expert sniper necessarily know the metallurgical properties of gun barrels or the physics of optics? Probably not, and doesn't care. Ballistics is about as deep as it gets, and generally only on the practical level.

          Familiarity and proficiency with features and optimum usage are indicators of interest and affinity, not technical understanding. While not exclusi

          • Does your average expert sniper necessarily know the metallurgical properties of gun barrels or the physics of optics?

            My point exactly.

            If what you want is people who are able to succeed in this world, on the terms of this world, then native proficiency beats native scientific understanding nine times out of ten.

            Think I'm wrong? Let's drop a newly-minted PhD in Botany on New Guinea and lets see if he lasts as long as an 22 year-old native. Or a climatologist PhD in the Gobi and compare his adaptation to th

          • Does your average expert sniper necessarily know the metallurgical properties of gun barrels or the physics of optics?

            Now days? Almost certainly, yes. Modern day military snipers are some of the smartest people on the planet, contrary to what you clearly think. They most certainly understand the optics and to some extent metallurgy. They know how their scopes work, and what exactly each type of bullet is going to do on impact. You can ignore this and pretend that just because they can't describe it using chemical and physics formulas that they don't understand it, but I'd argue they understand real world physics bette

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Digital natives pah! Kids can't use computers. They still double click on hyperlinks. I have to change screen resolution for some one at lest once a week and put the fracking wires back into the corresponding keyboard/mouse/monitor/USB holes regularly.

      Kids know how to use software or platforms and then largely only what they are interested in.

      I had a young CS student come to me because I maintain our virtual learning environment and have some web skills. She wanted me to go over dreamweaver with her to cat

  • so? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by epyT-R ( 613989 ) on Saturday August 24, 2013 @04:38PM (#44665655)

    It only takes participation in one of these invasive networks to lose your privacy. 'apps', facebook, whatever.. it's all the same. The only winning move is not to play.

  • Just steered clear (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 24, 2013 @04:42PM (#44665673)

    of the reddit "enhancement" suite upgrade because it suddenly wanted access to history and tabs.

    Been using it for a while until then, but now I dropped it. So it happens.

  • by blahplusplus ( 757119 ) on Saturday August 24, 2013 @04:43PM (#44665683)

    ... most kids are tech illiterate. To have any real privacy you have to understand the technology and what it's implications are and most average people will never grasp how easy it is for people to get your information if you use any technology at all.

  • by El_Muerte_TDS ( 592157 ) on Saturday August 24, 2013 @04:43PM (#44665687) Homepage

    most of their life they post on facebook

  • The Next Generation (Score:3, Interesting)

    by wrackspurt ( 3028771 ) on Saturday August 24, 2013 @04:45PM (#44665699)
    In human terms a generation is around plus twenty years. The internet about twenty years ago didn't have Google or Facebook. On /. the big concern was how completely insecure windows 95 was. There was a bit of chatter about privacy but it wasn't front and centre. The next generation has grown up on the internet and with social networking. It may be privacy will become the next way to show how cool you are. Who knows, crazy kids.... we can only hope.
    • Windows 95, completely insecure? As a business workstation, sure, but as a home OS?

  • by Anonymous Coward

    ... and then the "oooh shiney" Apple steps in and their brains explode.

  • Yeah, sure... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 24, 2013 @04:53PM (#44665745)

    They care about it because Google's app store shows them what permissions the app requires, then they jump to shortsighted conclusions. I once had someone email me some insulting words because my application kept track of the phone state in an attempt to reconnect gracefully after a call on CDMA carries. I guarantee the ~50% of teenagers who have not used an app because of privacy concerns have a Facebook account.

  • .. they clearly have something to hide. Since all their secrets are hidden in the phone you kind of want to trust the phone to hold your secrets.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Every kid these days has a social media portfolio (doesn't matter if its Facebook,twitter,instagram it adult friend finder). Slashdot community and kids have very different views of privacy, slashdot is more concerned with protecting data from corporations and governments (lurks,pgp,etc.) while kids are more concerned with protecting data from individuals (snapchat,password protected phones,etc.). Keep that in mind when taking in this article. I'm barely an adult myself and a year ago when I was in high sch

  • Right, they are aware of privacy concerns when it comes to mobile. But what about cloud services like Gmail? Are theses kids paying attention to who is handling their communications and documents, and what is done here?

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