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Your Grandmother: coming soon to a blog near you…

September 13, 2010

I thought I was on my own, the only person I knew whose 80+ year old grandmother traipsed down to the public library every Thursday to send all the grandkids an email. She’s recently learnt how to save emails to her address book, and even figured out the reply all button. It’s brilliant stuff.

Even more amazing though is the older generation’s takeup of social networks, even faster than they learnt how to use computers in the first place.

I read a post by emarketer.com recently about how some 26% of people aged 65+ in the United States are using social networks now. The figures, taken as at May 2010, had doubled in 12 months. To put it in perspective, that’s around 10 million grandparents already using the likes of Facebook (most likely) and other specialist networking sites if recent US Census estimates are accurate. If the numbers were to double again in 12 months (not out of the question), it’s only a matter of time before your whole family is connecting with you on Facebook!

The generation Y kids who are only now realising the downside of having every party photo from their wild childhood published on their Facebook site, and who are also struggling to come to grips with the fact that their parents are now monitoring their activities online, will soon have to contend with the likelihood that the grandparents will be there soon too!

Unsurprisingly, the Pew Internet & American Life Project, who conducted the research, found that two of the key reasons for the growth in social media usage were:

• reconnecting with people from their past.

• keeping in touch with the lives of their children and grandchildren.

I always feel bad as, during my struggle to keep up with the time and other pressures of everyday life, I neglect to keep in touch with family – just like my grandmother.
Now, there’s hope that when she goes back to the public library next Thursday, maybe someone will show how to find me on Facebook!

Deliriant Isti Romani – These Romans are Crazy!

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