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The data on the distribution of internet users by age and the time shares of the top 10 internet hotspots that Rainie and Wellman chose in chapter 5 of Networked caught the majority of my attention from this week's readings and class discussions. While Desmond and I were discussing chapter 5, more specifically figure 5.3 on p. 139, during class we both noted how each of us has multiple accounts on social networking sites with varying ages. Our discussion made me wonder if this was in any way accounted for in the Pew survey. Table 5.2 on p. 141 caught my interest because of a pattern I saw in the four subcategories that showed a positive change. Social networks, online games, videos/movies, and search seem to me the categories that we have seen embrace the hallmark of web 2.0, user input.

"Critics used to worry that the internet would be an inadequate replacement for human contact because hugging a computer screen is less satisfying than hugging a friend" and "in fact, the evidence shows that ICTs supplement rather than replace human contact." Rainie and Wellman have it right by describing ICTs as a supplement. A recent post on Facebook by my half sister exemplifies this. She recently discovered that my 10 year-old nephew created a Facebook account without her knowing and proceeded to deactivate it. Afterword she turned to her network on Facebook and asked what they would have done and how the handle Facebook with their children. The information that my sister gained from the 35 comments on her post acts as a supplement because she has already decided on the parental action of her choice and took to Facebook for additional sources on the topic. I don't think it would be too much to assume that my half sister had the ability to talk to 35 different people about this incident. This situation is telling of the amount of information, even if it is supplemental, that can be conveyed over ICTs as opposed to strictly during human contact.

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This page contains a single entry by brann038 published on March 28, 2013 1:16 AM.

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