Netflix Binging

Posted on: 04/12/16 5:45 AM | by Jonathan McKee

girl_watchingphone-DP.comAnd how we can use Netflix to connect with our kids

It’s funny how the proliferation of mobile devices is actually changing the way young people watch entertainment. One of the biggest changes is video streaming.

Think about it. At the turn of the Millennium, had you ever even heard the word “Netflix”? It wasn’t until 2001 when the company’s name began gaining recognition because Best Buy gave them exposure. You, like me, might remember them in the early 2000’s as a unique way to “rent movies” through the mail. Then come 2007 they began their video streaming services…

…and entertainment changed.

Now if you walk through a college dorm and see a Continue reading “Netflix Binging”

Teen Media Consumption 2015

Posted on: 11/9/15 6:25 AM | by Jonathan McKee

12yrgirlipadHow many hours per day do your kids digest entertainment media and technology?

Think about it for a moment. If you add up all the screen time, music, social media, video games, TV, mobile video… all of it! How many hours would it be?

Common Sense Media just did the math in their exhaustive study of thousands of teens (13-18) and tweens (8-12), and the total hours today’s young people spend soaking in media per day might surprise you Continue reading “Teen Media Consumption 2015”

3 Tips to Keeping Connected with Your Kids… without Becoming That Creepy Parent

Posted on: 09/8/15 10:51 AM | by Jonathan McKee

smartphoneA brand new study asking U.S. teens and their parents about their social media and mobile app use revealed some intriguing insights, not only about teen’s attitudes about tech, but about how connected… er… disconnected parents really are from their kids tech communication. The study discovered:

  • 79 percent of teens indicate they rarely say things online they regret (which one media outlet interpreted as them “not thinking before they post’).
  • 52 percent of parents say their biggest concern is how much time their teen spends on social media.
  • 43 percent of parents admitted they do not monitor their teen’s digital activity.

Interestingly enough, 88% of parents say they are aware of all or most of the social networks or apps their teens engage with, but yet Continue reading “3 Tips to Keeping Connected with Your Kids… without Becoming That Creepy Parent”

PG Porn

Posted on: 08/4/15 10:23 AM | by Jonathan McKee

Selena Gomez PG PornLast week as I prepped to talk with parents about their kids’ phones, I browsed through the music video charts and noticed some interesting trends, especially from some of the “child actresses” our daughters grew up recently watching on TV—Demi Lovato and Selena Gomez. Their two music videos at the top of the charts are what I call PG Porn—extremely sensual visuals, with scantily clad girls writhing in pleasure… but with no official nudity driving the rating up. It’s the kind of video that drives a junior high boy to either click on something more severe… or to take a cold shower.

And what are these videos teaching our daughters? Continue reading “PG Porn”

Filtering Rihanna’s BBHMM

Posted on: 07/9/15 5:45 AM | by Jonathan McKee

rihanna-BBHMM-videoRihanna released a brand new music video this month that is already causing a stir. The world would describe this scandalous video as shrewd marketing. Others, “art”…


I call it “selling out.”

Regardless, Rihanna knew that the over-the-top violence, nudity and even racial hatred would ruffle feathers… and garner web traffic!

The explicit video is heading toward 20 million views already.

And music videos like this always stir up a question I hear at literally every one of my parent workshops:

“How can I block this stuff from my kid’s phone?”

That’s why I just wrote a brand new Parenting Help article on titled “Filtering Rihanna.” This article provides Continue reading “Filtering Rihanna’s BBHMM”

Today’s Teens and Their Tech

Posted on: 04/14/15 5:45 AM | by Jonathan McKee

teen-girls-selfieLast week Pew Research’s Amanda Lenhart released their brand new report on Teens, Social Media and Technology, providing us with the newest data on how many kids are actually online, engaging in social media, and using mobile devices.

Any parent or adult who has connection with today’s teens already knows the answer to that question: all of them are!

Well… pretty close.

The report provides a pretty accurate breakdown of what tech teens own and have access to. Here’s a glimpse Continue reading “Today’s Teens and Their Tech”

From SnapChat to Tappy

Posted on: 01/20/15 5:45 AM | by Jonathan McKee

tappy appIt’s called Tappy. It’s the newest app acquired by Tinder, and the buzz is that it’s Instagram meets Snapchat.

The conversation begins with a photo, and then becomes chat. All messages disappear after 24 hours.

It’s everything young people want: pics, social media, anonymity and of course… it’s ephemeral. The first two elements aren’t bad, but the latter two are where young people frequently get into trouble.

Let me explain.

Parents should beware of any app promoting a lack of accountability. Anonymity only breeds irresponsibility. If you don’t believe me, look at the Continue reading “From SnapChat to Tappy”

You May be Addicted to Your Smartphone If…

Posted on: 12/22/14 5:45 AM | by Jonathan McKee

Amy Williams just wrote a fascinating guest post about teen smartphone addiction for our Parenting Help column on this week.

For those of you who are a little more visual, here’s her infographic: You may be addicted to your smartphone if… Continue reading “You May be Addicted to Your Smartphone If…”

5 Ideas to Help Your Kids be Smarter Than Their Smartphone

Posted on: 12/9/14 5:45 AM | by Jonathan McKee

Today's-TeensLast night my wife and I saw a friend at a Christmas party who I hadn’t seen in months… at least face-to-face. But immediately I complimented her on her Thanksgiving decorations and asked how her daughter’s b-day party was last weekend… as if we had just talked days before.


Instagram. I follow her on Instagram.

Americans have plenty of complaints about cell phones and the Internet. I regularly encounter parents who just want to smash their kids’ phones. But let’s not be too quick to throw the baby out with the bathwater Continue reading “5 Ideas to Help Your Kids be Smarter Than Their Smartphone”

Talking with Teens about Their Smartphones

Posted on: 10/9/14 5:45 AM | by Jonathan McKee

teen-social-media-hookup-cultureTeens typically think their smartphone use is reasonable.

Parents and teachers, however, think teen smartphone use is out of control!

Who’s right?

That’s the question I just proposed in the brand new blog I’m writing to teenagers every week (the blog is being hosted by that amazing new Faith Happenings site, the new online hub of Christian happenings in your city).

Here’s a snippet of that blog post Continue reading “Talking with Teens about Their Smartphones”