On WNYC’s “New Tech City” podcast, host Manoush Zomorodi talked to 16-year-old Grace, a high school junior from Westchester, New York who uses her phone, like most high schoolers, a lot.
Grace kept an audio diary of everything she did on her iPhone 4 for a week.
From checking Facebook to checking in with her mum, Grace documented it all in hopes of giving Zomorodi a window to peer into to see how teens really use their phones and social media — something we all seem to discuss a lot.
“It’s lunch and I’ve texted a bunch. Also I went on Instagram before gym. I’ll go over who I texted. I won’t name names but I’ll expand about what I texted about,” Grace says into her recorder. “There was some group chat drama. Then I texted some cute selfies the next morning.”
You can listen to the full podcast here, but we listened ourselves and took note of some of the most interesting things.
Cyberbullying — It exists.
“Of course people say snotty things,” Grace says. “But it’s not awful awful.”
While kids aren’t spending their days daring one another to kill themselves, they are bullying and emotionally manipulating their peers in more subtle ways.
Grace went on to say that in group chats, a group of people will talk about someone who isn’t in the chat, then invite them in so they can scroll up and see the mean things that were said about them.
“Some people think it’s funny to invite them in,” Grace said.
Anonymous apps like Yik Yak? So over, says Grace.
“Once the school blocked it…,” Grace said, then trailed off.
These apps come and go, Zomorodi says, equating them to hair bands in the 80s and Tomagotchis in the 90s.
LOL is a lame acronym.
If you use “LOL” you’re old, Grace declares. In fact, a lot of acronyms parents are warned about are acronyms kids aren’t even using.
Hear more about what Grace taught Zomorodi on WNYC by listening to the full podcast.