Credit: M. Coghlan, CC BY-SA 2.0

As another year draws to a close, we here at Parenting for a Digital Future want to thank you all for your reading our blog. Given that we launched only in March 2015 we are honoured by the continued feedback that this blog has become a key source for up-to-the-minute research and commentary about children, families and digital media.

(As ever, click here to subscribe, if you don’t already)

This autumn, we have been particularly busy, working with policy makers to advocate for new approaches to ‘screen time,’ data protection and understanding the UK children’s media environment post-Brexit. We advocated that parents to need updated advice about ‘screen time’ acknowledging their varied reasons for introducing technology into their homes and that a new generation of parents are increasingly savvy about digital media in their own right. We reacted to the new guidelines released in October 2016 from the American Academy of Pediatrics, noting where they got it right and where we questioned their use of evidence.

We have also commented on the development of the new General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR), investigating the rationale behind age restrictions for children and the role that parents might play. Previewing the emerging research from the ambitious Global Kids Online project, we discussed the current key issues and possibilities determining children’s internet use around the world.

Guest posters (our editorial guidelines are here if you are interested in joining these ranks) have contributed incisive posts on new studies on media use by low-income families in the US, Arabic-speaking young people in London, and offered a view from psychology to understand the meanings behind and impact of adolescent digital media use. We have considered how children might learn resilience from Minecraft, why young people gravitate to YouTube and whether ‘digital parenting’ is really distinct from ‘regular’ parenting. Continuing our exploration of ‘sharenting’ and whether there are limits to a parent’s right to share online, a guest post questioned whether the children of activists might grow up into an already established political digital footprint. We also continued with our series of posts bringing insights from Sonia Livingstone and Julian Sefton-Green’s new book The Class: Living and learning in a digital age.

If we might ask those of you who find this blog informative for one favour this holiday season, it is that you please share our blog with friends and colleagues and ask them to subscribe as well. As our research concludes in 2017 we will be considering next steps for this blog, and knowing that we are reaching a growing community will help us find a way to continue this work.