About a dozen years ago I was a part of a presentation in which my co-presenter told audience members about her discussions with the college students with whom she worked in which she would say, “The internet IS NOT a toaster.” By that she meant that at that time using the Internet was not as simple and easy as putting a piece of toast into a toaster, pushing the button, and then having a perfect piece of toast pop out in just a few minutes.
After 12 years I’d say that for most of the teens with whom we work, the internet IS a toaster. Why? Because it’s a part of day-to-day life and has been for the entire lifespan of anyone who is currently a teen, or younger. The internet to a teen is no different than a toaster, or a refrigerator, or any other appliance that gets used every day. And, it’s not just the internet, technology, web 2.0, ereaders, Twitter, Facebook, etc. is a toaster for the teens with whom librarians work.