January 2024 General Meeting – Girls and Social Media

Third Thursday Member Meeting

The Impact of Social Media on Girls:
Challenges, Opportunities, and Support

Thursday, January 18, 2024, 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Danville Congregational Church

We hope you were able to join the branch for our January 18 Third Thursday Member Meeting. We enjoyed an engaging presentation and group discussion led and facilitated by Jamie Nuñez, Western Region Manager at Common Sense Media on the challenges, opportunities, and ways to support girls affected by misuse of social media. We were a large group of parents, grandparents, educators, and administrators – our many branch members who attended as well as those who joined us from the greater community. Jamie helped us unpack the ever-changing, ever-present world of social media – how it impacts our children – especially girls!

Jamie Nuñez

There was much to discuss, and Jamie led the way with the latest research performed by Common Sense Media – the first of which was the impact of online interruptions, notifications, and pinging by our devices in our (and our children’s) daily lives. These can be constant interruptions from various sources/apps. The result of these interruptions and disruptions in our lives, and especially in developing brains, can be very unhealthy.

Second, Jamie shared the need for parents to understand the apps that their children use and understand platform features that can keep our children tied to their phones. Find out what your children use. Do some research. Note: Common Sense Media provides reviews of all types of media – they’re a great resource. Most important, work as a family unit to talk about use and agree on this together. What are the features the apps use to engage children? What motivators do the apps use to keep kids interested? Are these motivators healthy or un-healthy? What do the kids say about these things? Jamie encouraged us to have conversations with our children. He shared several trending apps that are engaging youth today – some of which employ AI in their goal to find and keep new users and followers.

Third, the topic of privacy and protecting our children was high on attendees’ list of concerns regarding social media misuse. Jamie addressed this and the importance of making sure safeguards are in place to block unwanted contact of our children. Again, know the nature of the social media they use and have conversations within the family about the value of privacy and about ways to avoid ‘dangerous pitfalls’ that may impact young or naive users.

Finally, on a profound and celebratory note, Jamie and Ogie Strogatz reported on the recent passage of AB 1394 -actively supported by both Common Sense Media and our branch and state AAUW Public Policy units.

AB 1394 requires a court to award statutory damages between $1 million and $4 million for each act of commercial sexual exploitation that social media platforms “knowingly facilitated, aided or abetted.” Never before have social media mega-companies been held accountable for the impact of their products. It was great news and a positive way to end a lively and thought-provoking evening.

Attendees at the Meeting

About Common Sense Media
Most technology wasn’t built with kids in mind. We’re on a mission to change that.

We believe in media that inspires and entertains families of all kinds. In technology that protects privacy and supports communities. In learning tools that prepare students and teachers for success in a connected world. Discover how we’re working to make the digital world better for kids and families.

To learn more about Common Sense Media, its mission, research, and programs – click here.

About Jamie Nuñez – Western Regional Manager at Common Sense Media

Jamie serves as the Western Regional Manager at Common Sense Media and supports school administrators, educators, students, and parents in addressing digital literacy skills. As a former high school teacher, school administrator, and an education center director, Jamie has supported thousands of people in addressing tech misuse. From TED Talks on student identity in online spaces to statewide initiatives addressing digital literacy policies in schools, Jamie has over 20 years of empowering others to create healthy digital habits. When not working, Jamie can be found in the ocean teaching his 8-year-old daughter how to surf and swim.