TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Parents Making Use of TV Despite Risks - New York Times

Parents Making Use of TV Despite Risks - New York Times

Monty Solomon (
Mon, 29 May 2006 13:12:44 -0400

The New York Times

WASHINGTON, May 24 - Sure, Sharae Sharp knows pediatricians say
children under 2 should not watch TV. But the advice feels less than
practical when she needs to scrub the bathroom floor or has a migraine
and is craving an hour of silence.

"Sometimes you just need some time," said Ms. Sharp, 29, unapologetic
about the 13-inch television she placed in her 3-year-old daughter
Taelor-Shanel's room more than a year ago.

Jennifer Beck-Wilson, 36, tends to agree with the Academy of
Pediatrics. But with a 3-year-old son, a 15-month-old daughter and a
full-time job, best intentions fall by the wayside. "There's my
philosophy and then there's real life," she said.

The two are hardly alone. A new study by the Kaiser Family Foundation,
in which both participated, found that despite increasing debate over
the potentially harmful effects of television on young children, many
parents believe that the benefits of a little tube time -- whether for
their children's development or their own sanity -- outweigh the risk
of raising a generation of crib potatoes.

On a typical day 61 percent of babies one year or younger watch TV or
videos, with average viewing of more than an hour, the study found. A
third of children under 6 have a TV in their bedroom. And more than
half of parents surveyed said their main reason for putting a TV in
their child's room was so that they or other family members could
watch their own shows.

The Media Family: Electronic Media in the Lives of Infants, Toddlers,
Preschoolers and Their Parents

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