Are Moms Stupid?

We noticed something recently in our travels through tech media. It's common--cliche almost--for journalists to talk about simplified technologies, or simplified explanations of technology, as something that "your mom" can understand. There are Mother's Day Presents so easy even Mom can use them. Articles on Facebook privacy can be so clear that even a mom can understand them. The iPad may succeed because it's good for moms who want easy solutions.

We don't use this kind of language about technology with women in general, any longer. Why do we make assumptions that moms are not capable of being technically savvy? Assuming that this media cliche is used to describe the mothers of adult children, is there any truth to the idea that older women/moms are not particularly interested in or knowledgeable about new digital technology? Even if there were, it seems like rather an insulting turn of phrase. Clearly, at 100 a million iPads sold, it's not just older women who are interested in easy 'no fuss, no muss' solutions. Those 'how to be secure on Facebook' news stories are always among the most emailed. I doubt if that's just "moms" sending them on.

We're working on a story about our perceptions of older women and technology. I'd love to hear what you think in the comments section, below.

I'd also love it if you help us out in creating a little audio montage, sending up cliches about moms and technology (sorry, guys, women only on this one). Just dial the Spark hotline, 1-877-34-SPARK, and read the text below.  Then we'll cut it up into a funny, over-the-top montage for the show! Thanks, and don't forget to leave your name!

  • As a mom, I think I better use an iPad. Other computers are too hard!
  • I'm a mom, and I don't know the first thing about online privacy.
  • I'm a mom. Can you help me operate a microwave?
  • As a mom, I feel nervous and uncomfortable around cell phones.
  • I'm a mom and I just don't understand how to operate this technology. It's called a "shoelace".


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