Thursday, January 17, 2008

Pew Reports: Teens and Social Media, Digital Footprints

The Pew Internet & American Life Project has recently published Teens and Social Media (December, 2007), a report that describes how teenagers make use of social networking tools to communicate. The full 35-page report is freely available, along with the five-page summary of findings preceding it. From the summary:

64% of online teens ages 12-17 have participated in one or more among a wide range of content-creating activities on the internet, up from 57% of online teens in a similar survey at the end of 2004:
--39% of online teens share their own artistic creations online, such as artwork, photos, stories, or videos, up from 33% in 2004.
--33% create or work on webpages or blogs for others, including those for groups they belong to, friends, or school assignments, basically unchanged from 2004 (32%).
--28% have created their own online journal or blog, up from 19% in 2004.
--27% maintain their own personal webpage, up from 22% in 2004.
--26% remix content they find online into their own creations, up from 19% in 2004.
The percentage of those ages 12-17 who said "yes" to at least one of those five content-creation activities is 64% of online teens, or 59% of all teens.

Another Pew Report, Digital Footprints: Online identity management and search in the age of transparency, is also available in full. It reports that "most internet users are not concerned about the amount of information available about them online, and most do not take steps to limit that information. Fully 60% of internet users say they are not worried about how much information is available about them online. Similarly, the majority of online adults (61%) do not feel compelled to limit the amount of information that can be found about them online."

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