Child discipline remains an area of intense discourse over the years, with the discussion intensifying with the advent and introduction of technology and social media to children.
One of such focal points that have remained a highly contested grey area remains the use of phones by children.
Microsoft founder Bill Gates may have lent credence to the school of thought who believe that children should not carry phones till they are much older, as he says he did not permit his children to own a mobile phone until they turned 14.
Gates made the revelation during an interview on Thursday with the British newspaper The Mirror.
Not only does Gates force his kids to wait until age 14 to get a smartphone, but he also limits the amount of time they could use them before going to bed.
Smartphones were also banned from the dinner table, especially during meal times.
“We often set a time after which there is no screen time and in their case that helps them get to sleep at a reasonable hour,’ he told The Mirror. Gates and his wife, Melinda, are parents to Jennifer, 20; Rory, 17; and Phoebe, 14.
Despite the irony of Gates playing a pivotal role in the technological revolution of the digital age, he still thinks limits need to be in place for children.
“You’re always looking at how it can be used in a great way homework and staying in touch with friends and also where it has gotten to excess,’ he said of smartphones and social media.
‘We don’t have cell phones at the table when we are having a meal, we didn’t give our kids cell phones until they were 14 and they complained other kids got them earlier.’