Study: Internet Not Dumbing Down Kids, Who Were Stupid Anyway


Kids! They know how to use computers! Actually no. Young students are as likely as older users to enter plain-English phrases as search terms, according to a study by the British Library (summarized here). They're also more likely to make research mistakes (like ignoring relevant information because it doesn't fit certain keywords), as luddites and librarians have feared, but not because of the Internet: Pre-web studies showed the same poor research skills among younger children, indicating that, well, children are less educated than adults. The study also produced the awesomest photo illustration of "research" ever.

In related news, children still play games! So says a study by market research firm NPD Group, which reports that kids 2 to 14 spend 45% of their computer time playing games, 31% listening to music, and pretty much no time reading. Meanwhile Chinese students are required to win a Nobel by age six and in twenty years they'll be outsourcing their World of Warcraft character advancement to America.