I’m at Computers in Libraries this week, and this morning I attended Helene Blowers‘s talk on digital natives. It was awesome. Helene is a great advocate for children and teens using technology. Here are some selected notes from her talk:
Identityâ€”For teens, their online identity is the same as their in-person identity; they explore to see if a space is safe; their social identity is very important to them
Safetyâ€”Digital natives have grown up in a world that they perceive as very safe; adults are paranoid that there’s a lot we need to protect them from; teens are great at making good decisions about their online safety. Only 0.8% of teens report meeting someone in person who they met online without asking their parents’ permission.
Information Qualityâ€”We’re seeing a shift from authoritative to collaborative control; social responsibility is heightened; we can influence people by sharing information; Britannica now has Wiki elementâ€”there are advantages to getting and sharing information in this way; people trust user-generated content the most to help them make decisions about purchases
Creativityâ€”Teens have the ability to express themselves and create content; cultural consumers are digital natives; thrive on information and ideas to fuel their own self-expression; 2/3 of teens are content creators
Opportunityâ€”Teens have high accessibility to information and technology; there’s no barriers; the playing field is leveled; access is universal; connection is ubiquitous; teens have access to a huge sandbox to assert their identity
Sharingâ€”Teens don’t see this as piracy; it’s copying, remixing, creating mashups
Check out Helene’s slides here; there’s lots of rich, useful information in there.