As kids, growing up, August represented the last few weeks of late night playing outdoors, last-minute trips to the lake and endless mosquito bites. As the nights dwindled, the sadness began to creep up as the summer was ending which only meant one thing: time to go back to school.

It really wasn’t that long ago (working in this industry) that many of us should recall going up to school to meet our teachers and other classmates.

We’d leave either complaining about how mean our new teachers were or how distraught we were that our best friend wasn’t in our class anymore. Tantrums aside, we would have our school supply list in hand and begin our back-to-school shopping.

Fast forward to the day and age where almost everything is a virtual experience: even the youngest kids have computers, iPads and cellphones before they’ve even reached middle school.

It used to be that you called your friends on the phone to gab about who was in your class and when you were going to the mall to pick up your trapper-keeper. This is no longer the case, as youths are taking to online platforms to gossip about their class schedules, outfits, and supplies instead.

After looking at the data that we’ve compiled, we can see that Twitter is the go-to site for back-to-school chatter, with 6,138 mentions clocked over the past week.

This chatter isn’t exclusively made up of gossiping teens; brands are getting strategic, using social media to target the back to school audience too.

Contests, sales and student discounts are all being advertised in kid-friendly places around the web, as they aim to make the back-to-school experience as profitable as possible, often by luring students in with interactive ways to shop.

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It’s not to say that Twitter is the only platform getting some TLC from students. They are also taking to YouTube to document their wardrobes, give advice, or rant about adolescent woes. The young folk have also made “creative” Facebook pages entitled “Seeing back-to-school ads is depressing.”

While whining about having to go back to school hasn’t changed. The way in which kids are not only getting supplies, but also discussing it with their peers has done a 180 turn. We can only hope their enthusiasm for tech-savvy gossip results in A+ grades.