Digital dating

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When it comes to spending time with a significant other, teens say texting is the top method, but phone calling and in-person time mix with other digital means for staying in touch.Asked how often they spent time with their current or former boyfriend, girlfriend or significant other on particular platforms, teen daters told us they use: The most socially acceptable way to break up with someone is by having an in-person conversation, and these conversations are the most common way that breakups occur in a “real-world” setting.Adolescence is a time of incredibly physical, social and emotional growth, and peer relationships – especially romantic ones – are a major social focus for many youth.Understanding the role social and digital media play in these romantic relationships is critical, given how deeply enmeshed these technology tools are in lives of American youth and how rapidly these platforms and devices change.Among teen social media users with relationship experience (30% of the overall population of those ages 13 to 17): For some teens, social media is a space where they can display their relationship to others by publicly expressing their affection on the platform.More than a third (37%) of teens with relationship experience (also called “teen daters” throughout this report) have used social media to let their partner know how much they like them in a way that was visible to other people in their network.In this study, we asked teen daters about a number of things they might have done online or with a phone to someone they were dating or used to date.These behaviors fall on a spectrum of seriousness, from potentially innocuous to troubling.

Nearly two-thirds (63%) of teens with dating experience have posted or liked something on social media as a way to indicate their support of one of their friends’ relationships.A majority of teens with dating experience (76%) say they have only dated people they met via offline methods.One-quarter (24%) of teen “daters” or roughly 8% of all teens have dated or hooked up with someone they first met online.This study reveals that the digital realm is one part of a broader universe in which teens meet, date and break up with romantic partners.Online spaces are used infrequently for meeting romantic partners, but play a major role in how teens flirt, woo and communicate with potential and current flames. 10 through March 16, 2015; 16 online and in-person focus groups with teens were conducted in April 2014 and November 2014.

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