More than one-third of families report that they couldn't function without consumer electronics such as computers, televisions, cell phones and game consoles, according to a marketing survey by Memorex, a consumer electronics manufacturer. Data from the survey of 1,010 parents, conducted December 2010, also show that more families are incorporating electronic devices into family time activities -- which the survey called "WeTime" activities.
No surprise that 86 percent of families listed watching movies or TV shows together as their most common form of "WeTime." It is interesting, though, that 42 percent of families now play video games as a togetherness activity (with Wii Sports being the most popular family game).
It seems like video games used to be a barrier to family fun -- with kids locked to their games and parents occupied with their own activities. But now it appears that "family game night" is as likely to involve Mario Kart as it to involve Clue or Monopoly. What do you think of this trend? Are electronics more of a source of togetherness for your family or a source of division?
The survey also shows that kids might be competing more with their fathers for the game consoles: 39 percent of adults reported using video game consoles daily or multiple times per day. Two-thirds of these adult daily gamers were men. (In my case, whether you define me as a daily gamer depends on whether the Angry Birds app on my mobile phone is defined as a video game.)
Only 1 percent of surveyed parents called consumer electronics "an unwanted barrier between family members."