Phones are an integral part of Australians’ daily routines. One in two Australians access their phones during the last three minutes before they go to bed at night (54%) and during the first three minutes after waking up in the morning (53%).
Australians are, however, attempting to decrease their screen time. Three in four Australians (74%) agree they are trying to reduce the amount of time they spend on social media.
“This data showing that most Australians connect with their screens within the last three minutes before going to bed and the first three minutes of waking up shows just how screen saturated Australians are. Despite the awareness of the negative impacts of screens in our lives, the dependency on them, indeed addiction to them for many is extreme”, said Mainstreet partner Dr Lindsay McMillan.
Screen time is reducing ‘life time’
Australians are experiencing the negative impacts of screen time, relationally, mentally and physically. Two in five Australians (42%) believe the use of screens is negatively impacting their mental health, while half (49%) believe that overall screens hinder their relationships rather than helps them. Two in three (64%) believe that their use of screens has made their life more sedentary.
The impacts of screens are not just experienced individually but also as a society. More than four in five Australians (83%) agree that the use of screens has led to a greater spread of misinformation in our society, alongside an increase in the prevalence of bullying (73%).
Cancelling cancel culture
‘Cancelling’ or boycotting brands or people after they have done something objectionable has become the new craze online; Australians, however, are calling for the culture to be cancelled. Three in four Australians (75%) agree that cancel culture has caused more harm than good.
Learning to navigate fake news and opportunity in an online world
Social media provides a platform for Australians to express themselves, bringing both challenges and opportunities. Nine in ten Australians (90%) say that social media is the biggest spreader of fake news and misinformation in our society.
Despite this, two in three Australians (68%) agree that social media has provided them with significant opportunities that they wouldn’t have otherwise had access to.
“The good news from this study is that Australians are wanting to better manage their use of digital devices. From reducing their use for the sake of our relationships and physical activity, to concern about the harm they are causing young people, Australians are expressing a desire to improve the use their phones and social media”, said Mark McCrindle