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  (Source: 20th Century Fox)
The Internet provides the social interaction teenagers once found in car ownership

Turning 16 has typically been associated with obtaining a driver's license and achieving a certain freedom and status that comes with having a car in high school. But in recent years, American teenagers have started ditching cars for a newer, cheaper form of social entertainment: the internet.

According to a survey by information technology research and advisory firm Gartner, 46 percent of adults ages 18 to 24 said they would prefer having internet access over a car. Only 15 percent of baby boomers from the 1950's and 1960's answered the same.

In addition, the U.S. Department of Transportation found that 50 percent of 16-year-olds had acquired their driver's license in 1978. In 2008, this number dropped to 30 percent. Also, the number of individuals aged 19 and under with a driver's license has decreased over time since 1978. In 1978, there were 11,989,000 drivers aged 19 and under while this number dropped steadily to 9,932,441 in 2010. 

Today, cars don't seem to measure up to what the internet can offer in the eyes of teens. Teens can simply jump on a computer or mobile device and connect with friends via social networking, games, or chat.

Wally Neil, a 25-year-old from Raleigh, North Carolina, was an example of a young adult who chose the Internet over obtaining a driver's license. He ended up receiving a license two years ago at the age of 23, but said gaming and the internet sufficed up until that point.

The internet is likely only one reason for the decreased number of U.S. teen drivers. Back in 2007, gas prices took a giant leap to $4.00 and higher per gallon, which made cruising around in a vehicle a much less attractive activity. Gas prices still linger in the $3 to $4 range.

Source: BBC News

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People are becoming complacent meatbags.
By 91TTZ on 11/29/2011 10:57:14 AM , Rating: 5
This doesn't surprise me. Looking at teenagers today I can easily say that they're less capable than they were when I was a teenager.

Most don't know how to work on their own car, they don't have any real-world skills, and they lack the motivation to do actual work. They're content watching reality shows on TV and browsing the internet. They've become a total consumer. Nobody likes to be told this, but it's true. Even when I look at class pictures nowadays I see a bunch of fat, unathletic kids. When I was in gradeschool in the 80's you might have had 1 or 2 fat kids in the entire school.

Articles often try to give this a silver lining by saying that kids nowadays are more computer saavy than kids 20 years ago. But this in itself is misleading because user interfaces have evolved and computers have become much easier to use. 20 years ago most people still used DOS which required knowledge of DOS commands and command line arguments. Add-in cards needed to have IRQs and DMA channels set. Now, everything is point and click. Really, kids haven't become more computer saavy, they've just become end users to a polished product.

RE: People are becoming complacent meatbags.
By Chapbass on 11/29/2011 11:22:17 AM , Rating: 2
I'd agree with everything but the last part. Sure, IRQ and DMA channels, etc, are all done automatically now...but that doesn't mean that the consumer that is 40 years old is better at a computer than 18-25 year olds. At a normal modern UI, I would say with complete certainty that I spend more time supporting users 40+ than I do with users 18-25 at my job (corporate support). And no, its not because there is more users 40+ at the company that I work for.

As far as dos commands and such, yes, being a Power user was much more difficult back in the day, but for the every day moron, it seems as though comfort level scales inversely with age.

Still, your first two paragraphs seem very true, sadly.

RE: People are becoming complacent meatbags.
By HrilL on 11/29/2011 12:17:04 PM , Rating: 1
Heh we have new employees out of college here and they don't know any more about computers than any of the older workers. Sure they've grown up with computers but they have no idea how to actually work on them or solve a simple driver/software issue. In some cases becaue of they are so used to things just working they're even less willing to even try to solve something on their own.

RE: People are becoming complacent meatbags.
By FITCamaro on 11/30/2011 8:08:47 AM , Rating: 2
Yeah just because kids can use Windows and know how to post on Facebook doesn't make them "computer savy". I'd say the general ineptitude with computers is equal between older and current generations. Just one can use the product better when it does actually work.

I've worked in offices full of engineers and the number that actually understands more than how to turn it on is a relative handful.

RE: People are becoming complacent meatbags.
By Amedean on 12/1/2011 8:21:42 AM , Rating: 2

One thing that surprises me about every consecutive generation is how much resentment from previous generations they get. There are more engineering students now than ever before thanks to less emphasis in liberal arts. Young adults now more than ever are collaborative and utilize technology. Their math and reading skills are better than their immediate previous generations. This is as much as I am willing to type.

Don't hate you insecure men!

RE: People are becoming complacent meatbags.
By Ammohunt on 12/1/2011 8:24:06 PM , Rating: 2
And what are they doing with all that "betterness" you may ask? Forming "Occupy" protests. If I were an employer I would take someone with an strong work ethic over ten recently educated college kids.

By YashBudini on 12/4/2011 8:01:41 PM , Rating: 2
If I were an employer I would take someone with an strong work ethic over ten recently educated college kids.

Name one Wall St banker with a strong work ethic.

Too hard. OK, name a Wall St banker with any ethics at all.

Now who would you hire?

By HrilL on 12/2/2011 12:12:15 PM , Rating: 2
Umm seeing as how I am pretty much in the generation you're talking about. I am only 25... While what you said may be true. The young Engineers we have are nearly worthless. They're extremely lazy have never had to work hard in their lives and it shows. It’s great they could finish school with an Engineering Degree but honestly. They were also a lot harder to get a few generations ago. Colleges used to hold students to a higher standard that they clearly don't hold students to today. Classes a lot easier and the amount if work and effort needed to get at least a B is a complete joke. My parents used to always tell me how little work I had to do compared to what they had to do when they were in college.

And looking at the newer generations as a whole. I find what you said to not really be true. The fact is more people are going to college so more also go into Engineering. Honestly these newer generations think they are entitled to everything. They truly believe just because they went to college they are guaranteed a job and such and such pay. My high school teachers were always spewing that BS. If I was hiring people I would look at how hard they've worked in the past and how hard they are willing to work. As well as learn on the job. Someone like that is a far better hire then someone that is skilled yet lazy.

RE: People are becoming complacent meatbags.
By Taft12 on 11/29/2011 11:27:01 AM , Rating: 5
You forgot to say "get off my lawn"

By CityZen on 11/29/2011 10:06:00 PM , Rating: 2
This is a +6 !!!!!!!!

RE: People are becoming complacent meatbags.
By MrBlastman on 11/29/11, Rating: 0
By jimbojimbo on 11/29/2011 3:02:25 PM , Rating: 2
Usually I can tell who's a technical user by whether they use phrases like "true hardcore computer user" to describe someone that knows what they're doing. Directory, folder, who cares? Why do you suppose they make the icon look like a folder? As long as they understand the principals behind it who cares??

RE: People are becoming complacent meatbags.
By cruisin3style on 11/29/2011 4:02:43 PM , Rating: 3
EXACTLY, and when people say "car" instead of "automobile" or call trucks or SUVs cars!!!

Not knowing the nomenclature doesn't make you any less computer savvy. Not being willing to accept a different approach to your own makes you ignorant. People do things for a variety of reasons...I'd tell pretty much anyone "folder" because I've found it saves a lot of time in life if you use the most commonly known terms for things...and when I was younger I would have said "folder" because I wouldn't want to seem like a nerd.

There are 2 reasons right there why you need to focus on what people are saying than on how they are saying it, instead of being childish when you don't get the answer you want.

RE: People are becoming complacent meatbags.
By MrBlastman on 11/29/2011 4:33:57 PM , Rating: 2
and when I was younger I would have said "folder" because I wouldn't want to seem like a nerd.

There's part of the problem right there. Embrace nerddom--do not shun it. The roots of who we are can't be hidden, no matter how hard we try.

Either you know the terminology or you don't--and it is definitely indicative of aptitude. I know many of Microsoft or Cisco certified people who... don't know squat. But... they have a piece of paper that says they do! However, when you start probing what choice of words they use, you can quickly see the false floors crumbling.

RE: People are becoming complacent meatbags.
By aguilpa1 on 11/29/2011 5:06:55 PM , Rating: 2
ha! embrace your nerdum, funny.

To be honest, I don't really give a rats posterior if someone calls it a folder or a directory as long as they know how to navigate it and find their files. My pet peeves, "uh, I can't find my file?" or "I need access to drive R on the network". Ok, where was your file stored or where on the network is the "folder" you are trying to access? BLANK STARE

I wish I could say, your fired and walk away.

RE: People are becoming complacent meatbags.
By Omega215D on 11/30/2011 12:48:34 AM , Rating: 2
just though i'd throw this into the discussion:

By FaceMaster on 11/30/2011 3:31:43 PM , Rating: 2
Well it's clear that this cartoon was made by somebody with very limited intelligence and a lack of understanding when it comes to computers, since he uses the word 'folder'.

Isn't that right, MrBlastman?

By Paj on 11/30/2011 7:12:49 AM , Rating: 2
Knowledge of terminology may contribute to aptitude, but it certainly isn't the sole determinant. Having an excellent knowledge of human anatomy doesn't make you a doctor.

RE: People are becoming complacent meatbags.
By FITCamaro on 11/30/2011 8:10:53 AM , Rating: 2
All certifications say is you can read a book and remember enough of it to take a test.

I just got my SCJP certification recently and still feel this way. Only got it because I got a nice raise out of it.

By YashBudini on 12/4/2011 8:07:42 PM , Rating: 2
All certifications say is you can read a book and remember enough of it to take a test.

It's the same learning MS lingo for tech stuff that already had names. They needed a way to justify charging so much for the tests in the first place.

Boot camps are fine if you use the stuff on your job now. Otherwise cramming knowledge at 500PSI in 2 weeks will have it leak out just as fast if it's not used. They do give employers the warm fuzzies for whatever reason.

SCJP certification

My sympathies.

By boobo on 11/29/2011 11:52:12 PM , Rating: 2
Every IT guy I know says "folder" and trained themselves to do it on purpose, since that is the most efficient way to communicate with end users.

RE: People are becoming complacent meatbags.
By senecarr on 11/29/11, Rating: 0
By Samus on 11/29/2011 1:07:30 PM , Rating: 1
I think it's great kids prefer information over traffic, as long as they don't get their information while in traffic.

By MrBlastman on 11/29/2011 4:36:53 PM , Rating: 2
Oh boo hoo. I'm going to shed a tear for those kids because they have a harder time getting a drivers license.

*sniff sniff*


Back when I was a kid we had to have a learners permit for a year, pass a written test and then, after that, pass a driving test too!

If a kid wants to drive bad enough, they'll do what they have to do to get it.

By Zoomer on 11/29/2011 11:41:00 PM , Rating: 3
Don't kid yourself; American licensing requirements and tests are generally a joke compared to many other countries.

RE: People are becoming complacent meatbags.
By invidious on 11/29/2011 2:54:35 PM , Rating: 4
I am an electrical engineer, I dont know how to work on my car, and i don't care, thats what I pay mechanics for. Do you know how to stitch your own clothes? Probably not because its not essential to modern society.

The internet is not just a consumerism tool, and it is not just about "reality TV" or dicking around on facebook. I can't even believe someone on this site could be so naive as to think that. Lazy/dumb people have always existed, it has nothing to do with modern kids.

I know several otherwise smart adults that cant figure out how to use a usb plug and play printer dispite how easy things have become, but I bet my 10 year old cousin could set it up for them. Kids are computer saavy, deal with it. If you think computer saavy is somehow worse than being mechcanic saavy thats your choice, but its not a progressive mentality.

RE: People are becoming complacent meatbags.
By Ringold on 11/29/2011 11:15:24 PM , Rating: 2
The other point, which I agreed with, was their work ethic and productivity.

Given the option between the two, I'd go with a car, not because I have any love of cars (its just an economic tool to get me from A to B with a minimum level of comfort), but because having a car means I have lots of job options in wide area, which means I can get one, and then pay for my internet.

No car, then how are these kids paying for their ipads? They arent, mommy and daddy is. The computers I had in high school and college I all built myself with money I earned myself. Thats near impossible without access to a car, in most of America.

RE: People are becoming complacent meatbags.
By someguy123 on 11/30/2011 2:17:14 AM , Rating: 2
The hell did you manage to obtain a car if you weren't able to earn money without the car? I'm not saying that ipads are practical at all, but someone had to baby you at some point. There are much worse things than receiving a toy or a bit of financial support from your family.

By jang_clangle on 12/2/2011 10:11:31 AM , Rating: 2
The hell did you manage to obtain a car if you weren't able to earn money without the car? I'm not saying that ipads are practical at all, but someone had to baby you at some point.

Wow, so your upbringing was so cushy you can't even *imagine* that some of us had to pretty much literally pull ourselves up by our bootstraps?

No-one ever bought me a car, or a place to live. I left at 16 with no support. A lot of people share a similar story...

Personally, I feel sorry for kids today. The world was a lot easier when I was a kid in the '60s and '70s. Maybe if I'd been born 20 or so years ago I'd be fat and lazy and under the impression that knowing the USB from the firewire from the thunderbolt makes on "computer savvy", too!

By Paj on 11/30/2011 7:19:17 AM , Rating: 2
This is ridiculous. Is public transport, or riding a bicycle, really that difficult? I've had commutes on the train of up to 90 minutes each way, and I actually really liked it - plenty of time to read, listen to music, play a game, or sleep!

If you need a car to get a job, then a car isn't your problem. Internet is orders of magnitude more useful in searching for a job - every new job places an ad online, CVs are submitted online, and in many industries (including my own) a personal domain webpage is pretty much mandatory.

Fair enough if you live in a remote area or one with poor transport links. But saying you need a car to get a job is just laziness, pure and simple.

By harshbarj on 11/30/2011 7:26:26 AM , Rating: 2
I know it's surprising but you don't need a car to live. I'm 32 and have never owned a car and don't see myself ever owning one. Between mass transit and my bicycle I get around just fine. Not only that but I have more money for other things as I am not wasting it on a car. Also I live in one of the most unfriendly cities in the nation for living car free (where sadly 93% of people use a car for commuting, even for commutes of less than a mile), so if I can do it many can.

RE: People are becoming complacent meatbags.
By PrinceGaz on 11/29/2011 4:44:30 PM , Rating: 2
IRQ's, DMA's? Why stop there. I can remember when I took pride in tweaking my DOS conventional memory, HMA, and UMB area allocation and usage along with the settings for everything loaded into each area in the CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT, so that I had an awesome amount of free conventional memory once everything had loaded.

Do I miss those days? Only when I'm feeling particularly masochistic. The reason we faffed with all those things was to make the computer work better afterwards, and to be honest, I'm glad it works better now without me having to spend hours seeing if I can fit the mouse-driver into this block by reducing the number of file pointers or stacks, and whether I can safely allocate the expanded memory page into a particular uncertain range without needing to reboot due to it freezing (for the umpteenth time that day).

Times change, and the skills needed change, but they aren't necessarily any less difficult to learn; just different. These days we have a whole new set of issues to deal with, usually to do with the internet, but also to do with everything PCs are used for these days which they weren't twenty years ago.

By Paj on 11/30/2011 7:38:49 AM , Rating: 2
I remember those days well. Getting Wing Commander sound to work by loading things into high memory, freeing up UMB, running EMM386.... ahh, those were the days.

Completely useless skills these days though, as you say, everything is done automatically. I'm sure punching programmable cards was once a highly paid skill too, but largely obsolete for today's skills market.

Kids being IT savvy is a good thing. Jobs depend more and more on IT skills and having no exposure to them puts you at a serious disadvantage. We have a had a new sales guy start, we had to teach him how to use email; he barely knows how to use a keyboard and mouse and still cant get around using Google to look up a businesses' telephone number - he always rings the phone directory. Its pretty embarrassing to be honest.

By FITCamaro on 11/30/2011 8:05:29 AM , Rating: 2
My exact thought when reading this headline was "Further proof that kids are stupid."

By FaceMaster on 11/30/2011 3:29:06 PM , Rating: 2
Looking at teenagers today I can easily say that they're less capable than they were when I was a teenager.

Same has always been said, and yet they always insist that it's different with the latest generation.

Do people still cruise in small towns?
By tlbj6142 on 11/29/2011 10:38:25 AM , Rating: 2
I grew up in a larger town so I don't have first hand experience with this, but once while I was in college (early 90s) I drove through a small town one Fri/Sat night in which the teens would cruise around a small loop in town (or a nearby strip mall parking lot) for hours.

Does this still happen?

RE: Do people still cruise in small towns?
By 91TTZ on 11/29/2011 10:42:21 AM , Rating: 2
Yes it does. I grew up in a pretty populated area and dudes still cruise around.

By Omega215D on 11/29/2011 11:50:56 AM , Rating: 2
Still happens in the outer boroughs of NYC as well but in Manhattan it's usually on foot after hopping off mass transit or taxis.

Long Island is pretty much standard fare for teens cruising around during the warmer months.

By DNAgent on 11/29/2011 1:50:45 PM , Rating: 2
I'm sure it still happens some places. The small town I grew up in used to be famous for its cruising, and was even featured in a USA Today article:

Unfortunately, the town banned cruising a few years after the article was written. Now the town is famous for nothing!

By tng on 11/29/2011 2:49:40 PM , Rating: 2
Where I grew up it is still hard to get good signal for just an ordinary cell call, so having a car is almost a necessity if you want to do anything.

Yes the nearest "Big" city does still have a Friday and Saturday night cruise, but I have not lived there for some time.

By Apone on 11/29/2011 12:24:40 PM , Rating: 2
Absolutely agree with 91TTZ!

- But to add to it, I think since teens are obsessed with the online world and have a major case of complacency, they neglect to look at the big picture once high school ends. Sure you can get away with being shuttled from point A to point B by mom or dad but once you graduate, how do honestly expect to take out a woman on a date without a car? (assuming public transportation isn't commonly-used in your neck of the woods)
- Also how do you expect to be taken seriously as an adult without a shred of credibility? (such as owning a car and having a stable job/career which signifies responsibility?)

RE: Yep
By Astral Abyss on 11/29/2011 1:00:23 PM , Rating: 2
I'm not so sure. When I got my license as a kid it was to escape my house and go hang out with friends and be cool. Now, simply having a car isn't cool anymore. You can escape by getting on the internet and playing the xbox or locking yourself in your room with your phone and Facebook.

I've heard many parents talking about their kids not wanting to drive. There's no incentive. It's not about work/jobs either. I work downtown and paying $70 minimum to park per month is a big reason many of my coworkers ride the bus everyday.

Insurance is a huge cost when you get your license at 16-18 also. Most parents aren't going to willingly pay it for their kids unless they're using the car to go to college, or only pay a portion of it for them. $2000 a year for insurance for a kid working part time, just for insurance, not to mention gas and possible car payment? That's crazy money. I just don't see that as a viable option for a lot of kids.

They'd much rather spend their money on new phones, games, and gadgets. It's no different from the crap we blew money on as kids.

I'm honestly glad there are less kids driving. They drive like crap anyways most of the time. Ha.

RE: Yep
By Apone on 11/29/2011 1:55:17 PM , Rating: 2
@ Astral Abyss

- You're not listening to me. Yes I agree that teens can lock themselves in their rooms and be comforted with the Internet and online gaming/social networking, etc. But to rephrase my point, there is going to be a time when these kids get older and wake up and realize they want more than just video games, Internet, Facebook, and Twitter.

- I'm in my early 30's and I know many people around me who are just now getting their butts in gear to catch up professionally because they realized they want to be respected, they want to get out of their parents' house, and they want to be taken seriously.

- In other words, you want that BMW? You want to take that trip to Europe with friends? You want that gaming laptop? It's not going to be spoon-fed to you unless your parents are financial idiots.

- And regarding car insurance, what's the big deal? It is what it is, of course it's not cheap, especially for a 16-18 year old. Split the cost between the parent(s) and have the kid learn some responsibility by working part-time or full-time to pay his/her portion. That's the incentive there.

- I know it's a rat race and it sucks but that's life and it's also a rite of passage if you want to be successful. You think Bill Gates and Michael Dell had your pessimistic mentality when they were struggling to make ends meet before launching their respective companies?

RE: Yep
By Ringold on 11/29/2011 11:26:36 PM , Rating: 2
As it happens, even, if I recall, every professional job I've applied for at one point or another asked if I had my own reliable transportation. Translation, since public transport sucks here: Do you have a car, and does it start 99.9% of the time?

Though, okay, I guess the Mommymobile is reliable transportation. But really. Lets have some spine, kids.

The number of teen drivers is meaningless.
By millerm277 on 11/29/2011 12:40:00 PM , Rating: 2
In many states, you now cannot GET a license at 16, so of course the #'s have fallen, and that has nothing to do with how much they want to drive or not.

RE: The number of teen drivers is meaningless.
By Dr of crap on 11/29/2011 1:26:25 PM , Rating: 2
Wait, what states don't let 16 year olds drive?

I know they have restrictions here as to hours you can drive and number of riders and who the riders are, but you can still get a license here at 16.

By millerm277 on 11/29/2011 5:57:38 PM , Rating: 2
NJ, and I'm almost certain many other states that have adopted GDL programs, do not allow you to get a license at 16.

I'm from NJ, in NJ at the moment you can only get a learner's permit at 16, no license in any form until 17.

By Dr of crap on 11/29/2011 10:37:49 AM , Rating: 3
Maybe the reason isn't the internet.
Maybe the kids are to lazy to get a job or there aren't enough jobs to make money to afford the gas and everything else.
The parents can't afford to buy the kid a car, and the way higher insurance rates, and give him gas money with the economy and high car and gas prices.

There is more to this story than just the internet. But conditioning in the early teens continues for a while until they realize they need transportation.

RE: Maybe
By TSS on 11/29/2011 7:14:21 PM , Rating: 2
And exactly do you mean by early conditioning? Because i read that as "obvious failure of the parents".

Kids need to be raised by their parents to be responsible adults or else they aren't going to be responsible adults. If they haven't turned out right they haven't been raised properly.

If you want any example of that, take me. I've been behind the PC for years, i call myself a hardcore gamer with pride. I've spent days of 18 hours behind the PC, practically non stop since i was 13. Plus all kinds of psychological problems that would take days to describe. I've been living a year on my own now, and everything is going just fine. Just today my dad and a friend where over for a drink and a movie and they commented multiple times on how everything was well taken care off. If there ever was a kid you wouldn't expect to be able to live on his own, it would be me. And everbody did doubt it.

Except for me, because i knew i was raised properly and have the capabilities to deal with problems as they arise.

I know raising kids is a concept in the US that you need an archaeologist to dig up, every sit com that we get on TV over here from the US proves that. But i would really suggest to start digging before you start pointing fingers.

"$2 and some change instances"?
By Taft12 on 11/29/2011 11:30:23 AM , Rating: 3
Gas prices still linger in the $3 to $4 range with the exception of the occasional $2 and some change instances.

I like your articles Tiffany, but does DT have an editor go over the submitted articles? This sentence needs a lot of work.

By MrBlastman on 11/29/2011 11:57:26 AM , Rating: 2
The quote about the number of teen drivers in the UK came completely out of left field. There's nothing to relate that statistic to. No previous numbers, no population numbers... nothing. It is so utterly irrelevant I was scratching my head as to why it was included. It needs more supporting statements to help put it in perspective with the rest of the article.

Stupid survey
By amanojaku on 11/29/2011 10:43:57 AM , Rating: 2
Historically, a car, house and spouse were the only signs of adulthood. There was nothing else to look forward to, other than a business. There was no Internet, and phones were inconvenient, so mobility was the best way to interact with people.

Now, we don't have to worry about the expenses and maintenance of cars, houses and spouses. More people want public transportation (I prefer a car, so I can't wait to leave the city), apartments (I prefer a house; better to deal with repair people you can easily sue than an a$$hole landlord who can get away with not fixing anything for years), and being single (I won't get married until I meet the right woman, and if you've seen good marriages you know why they're good), because it's easier/lazier.

It's not just the car; everything has changed.

RE: Stupid survey
By Makaveli on 11/29/2011 4:30:56 PM , Rating: 2
Interesting topic.

I've abit of everything posted in here. I live about 20 mins outside of the downtown core of my city. I own my own house, haven't had a car on the road in 5 years. I can get back and forth to the city in 20mins by train instead of an hour drive in traffic (without accidents). If I need a car to get around I just rent one.

As for the point that other guy brought up about women. I don't drive and have been doing well in that department for years. It all depends on the woman you go for. And for a chick not to date me for not driving currently is just as silly as me not dating her because she has small boobs. I've seen plenty of my friends just taxi cabbing women around town and for what? They get a cheap lay out of it and the chick just cheats them for a guy with a better car lol. And the guys with the money and the fast cars are smart cause they will just f*** em and dump because they know what there are about from the start.

That has never been me you can drive them around town and I'll just F*** em lol.

By mm2587 on 11/29/2011 10:53:02 AM , Rating: 2
Just because Teens would choose the internet over a car (while their parents typically *gasp* have to get to work and a bright yellow bus won't take them there) does not mean that very many teens have to make that choice.

I would prefer a roof over my head to a finished floor. Fortunatly I live in the 1st world and dirt floors aren't really something I have to consider if I choose a roof.

I would say the real reasons as to why teen driving is down is probably more economic. Jobs are harder to find. The expenses of owning a car have gone up significantly. (between the strong used car market, gas prices, and insurance premiums)

RE: sigh...
By bobsmith1492 on 11/29/2011 5:18:48 PM , Rating: 2
I agree... while I do both drive and use the internet, I could get by ok without a car (I'm biking distance to work and stores).

While a car is useful, it's still not a necessity of life. Obviously the Internet isn't, either. There's no reason a car should be the obvious choice.

I think cars used to be the status symbol; everyone wanted to be rich in the "boomer" generation and having a nice car and house were the two top symbols of having money. Speaking for myself, I have no desire to appear wealthy. I drive a beater, though I could get something nicer if I wanted. I think many young'uns think the same way. Car's aren't as much of a status symbol, and (maybe) we young'uns don't have as much emphasis on looking wealthy. Especially if the Occupy people are any indication...

+10 for the pic!
By Enoch2001 on 11/29/2011 4:09:27 PM , Rating: 2
I can't beleive no one picked up on the "License to Drive" pic?? Ahhh Heather Graham... how I loved thee, Mercedes Lane...

RE: +10 for the pic!
By Brandon Hill on 11/29/2011 4:29:27 PM , Rating: 2
I had to put that in there for the 70s/80s guys here :)

I remember that movie fondly as a kid.

My generation did it right...
By jharper12 on 11/29/2011 7:27:08 PM , Rating: 2
When I was 15 I bought a Camaro with cash I saved up from working. I had a steady job at 13, which wasn't technically legal, but who cares if a kid wants to work at 13, really? I proceeded to drive like an idiot, race, discover flight (on accident), and get it on with my girlfriend.

The internet happened, jump on board, make a ton of money. Realize we'll most likely die at the hands of idiotic teenage drivers. A large group of us got together and invented a brilliant system that would keep kids off the road, unable to take our jobs, and eventually leave an entire generation of 20 year old girls available. Facebook. We pinned that s*$t on Mark Zuckerberg, because he was an ambitious prodigy, and it was a story the public would believe. A few dissenters later sued, when they got jealous of his immense wealth and fame. The rest of us were content with our millions and hitting on college girls who got tired of their boyfriends "poking" them through facebook.

True story.

RE: My generation did it right...
By rountad on 12/1/2011 1:25:47 PM , Rating: 2
Give this one a 6!

dude...they do in ireland
By ballist1x on 11/29/2011 10:46:05 AM , Rating: 2
but once while I was in college (early 90s) I drove through a small town one Fri/Sat night in which the teens would cruise around a small loop in town (or a nearby strip mall parking lot) for hours.

yea i was in ireland for a wedding the other month and ill tell you YES they still do this around the town centre's at night.

It was a Toyota Corolla too, I think he was part of the owners club but seriously all those laps, i was wondering what he was getting out of it.

Im not hating corollas either, i had one up until the other month. He did look like he was Coked off his %%%^ though...

By jimbojimbo on 11/29/2011 2:46:12 PM , Rating: 2
So less teens have licenses... what's the problem? My only concern is all those without licenses driving around now and since they're minors they'll just get a slap on the wrist.

By ChipDude on 11/30/2011 1:58:22 PM , Rating: 2
Who needs a car to get out and socialize and party with friends?

My kids are doing online gaming, when they do homework they are often on all with friends or girlfriend in a realtime chat. In my time I'd go to the library to hang with friends or my girlfiends house. These days my kids are on facebook, skype, or iPad with friends and are at home and socializing.

YOu can argue that it is safer or you could argue that somethings just can't be replaced like haning at the mall, library or a bookstore togather....

By trisct on 12/1/2011 4:08:58 PM , Rating: 2
Does anybody have any idea what 80s movie the headline photo is from?

No one ever accused Americans of being smart
By Beenthere on 11/29/11, Rating: -1
RE: No one ever accused Americans of being smart
By bobsmith1492 on 11/29/2011 2:10:17 PM , Rating: 2
It's not like the US is the home of most of the world's universities, most of the top universities, and the most graduates. It's not like the US is the top exporter of industrial heavy equipment, home of the most tech companies, automotive companies, aerospace companies, home of the start of the space age, computer age, wireless age, Internet age, or any of that. Americans are just dumb.

By jimbojimbo on 11/29/2011 3:04:08 PM , Rating: 2
Also who created the internet? And no, it's not Al Gore.

By FaceMaster on 11/30/2011 3:41:44 PM , Rating: 2
It's not like the US is the home of most of the world's universities, most of the top universities, and the most graduates. It's not like the US is the top exporter of industrial heavy equipment, home of the most tech companies, automotive companies, aerospace companies, home of the start of the space age, computer age, wireless age, Internet age, or any of that.

You're right, it isn't.

By jang_clangle on 12/2/2011 11:01:48 AM , Rating: 2
It's not like the US is the home of most of the world's universities, most of the top universities, and the most graduates. It's not like the US is the top exporter of industrial heavy equipment, home of the most tech companies, automotive companies, aerospace companies, home of the start of the space age, computer age, wireless age, Internet age, or any of that.

No one country holds all those distinctions, and currently the USA holds none of them.

I'd like to dedicate this song to bobsmith1492 -- thank you. Thank you ver' much.
Happy and I'm smiling,
walk a mile to drink your water.
You know I'd love to love you,
and above you there's no other.
We'll go walking out
while others shout of war's disaster.
Oh, we won't give in,
let's go living in the past.

Once I used to join in
every boy and girl was my friend.
Now there's revolution, but they don't know
what they're fighting.
Let us close out eyes;
outside their lives go on much faster.
Oh, we won't give in,
we'll keep living in the past.

"People Don't Respect Confidentiality in This Industry" -- Sony Computer Entertainment of America President and CEO Jack Tretton
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