"The distinction between correlation and causation is not a mere technicality to acknowledge before moving on to a pre-ordained conclusion; it is fundamental to a correct interpretation of the work." Read Vicky Rideout's response to Jean Twenge's provocative Atlantic article on the London School of Economics' Parenting for a Digital Future blog.

Read Vicky Rideout's comments about teens and smart phones in the August 2018 issue of the Atlantic


The second wave of Social Media, Social Life - a survey of teen social media use for Common Sense Media;

A survey with University of Texas Professor Craig Watkins about Millennials' use of social media for social and political engagement;

An evaluation of a pro-social media campaign for the Clinton Foundation's Too Small to Fail;

And more - stay tuned!  


Given the variety of activities children can undertake on their phones and tablets, does it make sense to talk about "screen time" any more?  And in this transmedia world, how can we effectively measure children's media usage - or should we even bother to try? 

Read Vicky Rideout's commentary in the Journal of Children and Media on why it does make sense to continue doing our best to measure the time children and teens spend with various types of media, using quantitative, nationally representative, probabilistic samples - despite the many challenges of doing so.  The article includes lots of key data from the recent Common Sense Census: Media Use By Tweens and Teens, now available in an academic journal. 


danah boyd puts the 'spotlight' on Vicky Rideout in the International Communications Association's newsletter for the Division on Children, Adolescents & Media 

read the interview >

Watch Politico's behind-the-scenes video about Barack Obama's 2004 Democratic Convention speech, including an interview with Vicky Rideout, director of speech writing for the Convention. 

The firm is run by Vicky Rideout, a veteran Foundation executive, non-profit program director, and political aide whose career has run the gamut from working with then-State Senator Barack Obama on his historic speech to the 2004 Democratic Convention, to winning an Emmy Award with MTV for most effective public service campaign.  In addition to being covered in the popular press, her research has been published in peer-reviewed journals like the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), Pediatrics, and the Journal of Marketing and Public Policy (where she received the Thomas Kinnear Award recognizing the article that “makes the most significant contribution to the understanding of marketing and public policy issues within the most recent three-year period). 

Ms. Rideout founded VJR Consulting in 2010, and since then the firm's clients have included Northwestern University's Center on Media and Human Development, Common Sense Media, the Joyful Heart Foundation, Cartoon Network, Hope Lab, the Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop, and many others.  The firm's projects have included national surveys on children's use of new technology, families' use of educational media in the home, parenting in the digital era, teenagers' experiences with social media, and teachers' opinions about the educational impact of students' media use. The company's work for our clients has been featured in the New York Times, Washington Post, USA Today, ABC World News Tonight, and many other news outlets.  We have helped our clients negotiate media partnerships worth millions of dollars with Viacom, USA network, and Time Warner Cable. 

Ms. Rideout has been a featured speaker at the Association of American Publishers, the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, the Banff World Television Summit, the Youth Mega-Marketing Event, annual conferences of the National Association of Broadcasting and the National Cable Television Association, and at retreats for the Fox Broadcasting Company and PBS Kids. She has testified on youth and media at the U.S. Congress, the Institute of Medicine, the Federal Trade Commission, and the Federal Communications Commission.

She currently serves as editor for Reviews and Commentary for the Journal of Children and Media. She previously served on the Institute of Medicine’s Committee on Accelerating Progress in Obesity Prevention, the James Irvine Foundation’s Leadership Awards committee, the PBS Kids Advisory Board, and the Advisory Council for the San Francisco Children’s Creativity Museum.

Prior to founding VJR Consulting, Ms. Rideout spent more than ten years as a vice president of the Kaiser Family Foundation, where she established and directed the Foundation’s Program for the Study of Media and Health.  Prior to joining the Foundation, she founded the Children and Media program at the children’s advocacy group Children Now

At the Kaiser Foundation, Ms. Rideout negotiated ground-breaking partnerships with the television networks MTV, BET and UPN, securing high-profile, multi-million-dollar donations of media time to conduct youth-oriented public education campaigns. The public service ads, original long-form programming, and online content she helped develop through these partnerships received many awards, including a National Emmy Award for best public service campaign. Ms. Rideout also directed numerous media-related studies for the Foundation on topics such as: the role of media in childhood obesity; public service advertising on television; the impact of health messages on the TV shows Grey’s Anatomy and ER; the amount and nature of food advertising on television and the Internet; the amount of sexual content on TV; teens’ use of the Internet for health information; and media multitasking among American youth.

Ms. Rideout also established and hosted a seminar series for staff of public health agencies in Washington, D.C., about trends in social marketing and public service advertising. The forums addressed such topics as Using New Media for Public Education Campaigns; Public Service Advertising in the U.S. and Great Britain; and Assessing the Effectiveness of Public Education Campaigns. In all, she has produced numerous forums on media and health, attracting a diverse group of high-level participants such as then-Senators Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton; the presidents and CEOs of MTV and Fox Television; media producers and directors such as Dick Wolf and J.J. Abrams; rap stars Chuck D. and Common; former Vice President Al Gore; and several Chairmen of the Federal Communications Commission.

Before joining the non-profit world, Ms. Rideout had many years of experience in government and politics, including as a legislative assistant in the U.S. House of Representatives and as a policy adviser and speechwriter to numerous officeholders and candidates. She was the director of speechwriting for the 2004 and 2008 Democratic National Conventions, where she worked closely with the Obama campaigns on Barack Obama’s remarks to the 2004 convention, and on message and strategy for the 2008 convention. 

She graduated with honors from Harvard University and received her MA from the Maxwell School of Public Affairs at Syracuse University.

Peer-Reviewed Publications and Partial List of Speeches and Testimony

Behind The Scenes In Denver at the Democratic National Convention
February 11, 2009, By Katie Couric, CBS News