Ofcom publishes report on media use amongst children and parents.

By April 13, 2022 Industry News

According to Ofcom’s latest report on the use of media amongst children and parents, six in ten children played games online in the UK last year. Significant findings include that 18 % of 3-4 year olds,  38% of 5-7s year olds, 69% of 8-11 year olds and 75% of 12-17 year olds played online in the last year. Boys were significantly more likely to play games online than girls, but gaming was still common
among both (66% of boys; 51% of girls).

Games consoles were the most commonly used device to play online. More than half of children played online games with a mobile device and only three in ten children played games online on a desktop. The majority of children who played online did so with someone they knew and half of children aged 3-17 played with a  parent but this was more likely amongst younger age groups.

When asked whether the benefits of their child playing games outweighed the risks, the most common answer given by parents was either neutral or unsure (40%). A similar proportion, almost four in ten (38%), said they agreed that the benefits did outweigh the risks, while 22% disagreed. Parental concern about online games focused on interactions in games. 59% of parents were worried about their children speaking to strangers, 52% were worried about bullying and 51% were concerned about children being pressured into making in-game purchases.

The research also found that nearly nine in ten parents (87%) have in place at least one rule to govern the way their children play. The most common rules surrounded in-game purchases with 65% of parents putting in place rules to limit spending. Over 50% of parents also had rules about when children could play, what they could play (both in terms of age rating and content) and time they could spend playing.


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