Thursday, December 12, 2013
In The Pursuit of Happiness: On grandparents and social media
But those days are gone, and in their place? A new crop ready to take over the Web. Fast and furiously.
If you’re still not convinced that the wonderful world of social media is no longer a young person’s playground, AARP magazine, the long-standing bible for the Golden Years, has solid proof.
• AARP now features a social-networking section on its Web site.
• A recent survey by the Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project found that, for the first time, more than half of adults 65 and older are online. And, one in three of them uses social networking sites such as Facebook, Skype or Twitter.
This boom is a revolutionary way for them to stay connected, especially across great distances, with the people who matter to them the most; family, friends and if not most important, grandchildren.
My family has even become part of the technology revolution. My mother has helped several women learn the ins and outs of the computer and Internet -- and that’s saying a lot if you know my mother’s own computer capabilities. She’s also helped my grandfather enjoy the comforts of Netflix. And my sister started off the whole trend when she was in middle school and participated in a program called Senior Surfers, which paired an older person with a student so the student could show them the ropes of this newfangled gadget called the Internet.
This is nothing short of amazing if you ask me. Those lovely seniors will no longer be relegated to a weekly phone call or snail-mail letter like it was with my grandparents when I was a child. Now they can keep in contact on Facebook. e-mail each other at any time of the day. Even use Skype to chat in real-time.
Are your grandparents online, friends? How often do you chat with them? Do they use social media? xoxo