Blogger Hacks, Categories, Tips & Tricks

Thursday, November 03, 2005
Teens and the Internet
Pew have a new report about teens and their use of the internet, [pdf] which further reinforces many of Andii Bowsher's ideas about the technology generation gap, and digiborigines. Here's the blog-related stats... Forgive the extended extract:
More than half of online teens are Content Creators.

Some 57% of online teens create content for the internet. That amounts to half of all teens ages 12-17, or about 12 million youth.

These Content Creators report having done one or more of the following activities: create a blog; create or work on a personal webpage; create or work on a webpage for school, a friend, or an organization; share original content such as artwork, photos, stories, or videos online; or remix content found online into a new creation. The most popular Content Creating activities are sharing self-authored content and working on webpages for others.

33% of online teens share their own creations online, such as artwork, photos, stories, or videos.

32% say that they have created or worked on webpages or blogs for others, including those for groups they belong to, friends or school assignments.

22% report keeping their own personal webpage.

19% have created their own online journal or blog.

About one in five internet-using teens (19%) says they remix content they find online into their own artistic creations.

Teens are much more likely than adults to blog and they are also more likely to read blogs.

19% of online youth ages 12-17 have created their own blog. That is approximately four million people.

38% of all online teens, or about 8 million young people, say they read blogs.

7% of adult internet users say they have created their own blog and 27% of online adults say they read blogs. (Note: Data for adult blog readers comes from the May-June 2005 Pew Internet Project Tracking Survey.)

19% of online teens keep a blog and 38% read them.

Older girls ages 15-17 are the most likely to blog; 25% of online girls in this age
group keep a blog, compared with 15% of older boys who are online. About 18% of younger teens of both sexes blog.

Teens who go online frequently are more than twice as likely to blog; 27% of daily users have their own blog, compared with 11% of those who go online several times a week, and 10% of those who go online less often.

Bloggers and to a lesser extent teens who read blogs are a particularly tech-savvy group of internet users. They have more technological tools such as cell phones and PDAs and are more likely to use them to go online. Not only do they live in technologically rich households, but they are more likely to have their own computer at home and to be able to use it in a private space. They help adults do things online. Most strikingly, they have more experience with almost all online activities that we asked about. Bloggers are more likely than non-bloggers to engage in everyday online activities such as getting news, using IM or making online purchases, but content creating and sharing activities are the areas where bloggers are far ahead of non-bloggers.

Older girls lead the blogging activity among teens.
Teen bloggers are tech-savvy and heavy internet users.
Bloggers Create & Share All Kinds of Content
Bloggers engage in content-creating, sharing, and remixing activities more than their nonblogging counterparts.
I am interested in the ways that teens are using blogs, and in some of the problems that are inherent in the true "online diary," such as making private thoughts available in a public medium. I would be interested to know how many of these blogging teens were maintaining sites that made some concessions to safety & security.

For various reactions to Pew, see:
In gruesome evidence of teen's familarity with and use of blogs, Philipp at Google Blogoscoped links to the Times Online, where Leo Lewis has the story of a teen who poisoned her mother and blogged about the process. An unfortunate example, coincident with the Pew Report, of how ubiquitous the technology is becoming, & how the private diaries that we kept under our beds as kids are now published on the web for anyone to see....

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Posted at 12:06 PM by John.
3 Comments:
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Blogger Jim said...
Haven't yet read through the links you supplied. I'll do that in a moment.

Adolescents (I worked with teens for 10 years and will have two teens in my house in a very short time) are simultaneously one of the lamest and most innovative and fascinating demographics in our culture.

This is a cohort to watch, IMO. The innovation push from this group will have its own style but it will also have a significant impact on connectivity across the board: from the technology and media to the content of the conversation.

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Blogger Fritz said...
John,

A high school writing teacher in my city blogs AND he has created a websites for his students to blog to. OldeSchoolNews.com is "Online. Hyperlocal. Because." Much of the writing isn't too bad.

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Blogger Singpolyma said...
"I am interested in the ways that teens are using blogs"

In my experiance, the majority of my friends keep a personal-only blog that is meant to keep distant friends/family updated on their lives (analogous to the mass-emailings some other people do). I have two friends who keep a 'mixed blog' (this is, tech stuff AND personal posts all on the same blog). And I know of only myself and my brother who keep one blog for personal and one for other (my other being technical, his being creative). So I would have to say that, in my experiance, teens tend to be using blogs to keep in touch with friends/family. This is somewhat different than an actual 'online diary' but is also not 'real' blogging as many have come to know it.

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