9 in 10 Flemish youngsters on Facebook

Research has shown that 90 percent of the Flemish youngsters aged between 9 and 18 have a Facebook account. However, they are using it in a different way now. Schools are also making an effort to adapt their programme to meet the youngsters' needs. Apart from Facebook, other popular social media sites include Snapchat and Instagram.

The research was conducted by Mediaraven, Linc and the Ghent University UGent and involved 1,700 Flemish youngsters. The figures apply to 2013 and are 10 percent up on the year. Facebook beats other social network sites such as YouTube (62 percent), Instagram (30 percent) and Twitter (25 percent) with ease.

"Facebook has a wider scope than ever. However, youngsters are using it in a different way. In the past, it was an easy way to let all your friends know what you were doing, or to share your experiences using a status update", explains researcher Kristof D'Hanens.

"Now, we see that Facebook is being used to discuss homework, to ask practical questions about e.g. the sports club, to have private conversations etc. In other words, it has become much more than just the mass communication tool it used to be a couple of years ago."

3 in 4 youngsters want teachers to focus more on social media than is now the case. Compared to 2012, schools have included more social media classes in their package though, informing youngsters about privacy regulations  (41 percent) and teaching them how to take the right approach to online sources (65 percent).

Almost 9 in 10 Flemish youngsters (86 percent) have a smartphone. Still, their package deal only includes mobile internet in less than half of the cases. It's usually the parents footing the bill. 65 percent have their own mp3 player, and 54 percent have a laptop.

Verwendung weltweit, usage worldwide