Welcome to New Media Design for Trimester 2!!!
I want to get to know you, especially, how you interact with technology in your life. After reading the following article, answer the questions at the bottom of this blog post. Remember to sound smart!
Millennials' lead the wired life
New generation 'digital natives in a land of digital
By Athima Chansanchai
Updated: 12:30 p.m. PT Sept
When they were babies,
compact discs were phasing out audio cassettes. When they hit pre-school, the
Internet came into widespread use. In elementary school, they learned how to
surf that ‘Net while vying for the high scores in video games and watching
Disney on DVD. In middle school, pagers and PC’s were part of daily life. In
high school, cell phones with organizers, instant messaging and cameras were in
In college, they can
order books online, bring laptops to class and IM friends while on study breaks
in the library.
This generation of
students is as comfortable with computer screens as the pages of their
textbooks — if not more so. As they go back to school, they’ll continue the
seamless integration of technology into their lives.
They’re known as
Millennials — young adults whose gadgets are like appendages to them. They
can’t imagine life without their cell phones, iPods, computers and being
online. As the Pew Internet & American Life Project astutely observed, they
are “digital natives in a land of digital immigrants.”
One such native,
Samantha Wachtel, 17, a senior at Tamalpais
High School in Marin County, Calif.
does two things when she gets up every morning: checks her pink Razr for missed
calls while she slept and she turns on her Dell computer. Before she leaves the
house for school, she checks e-mail, MySpace, listens to iTunes, instant
messages her friends and sometimes just surfs the Web via Google.
At school, she is
enrolled in the two-year film-based Academy
of Integrated Humanities
an New Media (AIM) program for juniors and seniors. It integrates three subjects
— English, social studies and computer applications. Each year, AIM has a
certain theme that students follow in each of the three classes. Each student
in the program draws from these classes to make documentaries.
“This generation is
really about expressing themselves — ‘me media’ — where they get to connect and
do it themselves,” said Caitlin McBride of Fresh Films, a sponsored
organization that allows high school students in certain cities to compete to
make films in a week.
The road to Wachtel’s
tech savviness began almost from the moment she came into the world.
She can’t really
remember audio cassettes, going right into CD’s as a child. VHS tapes and
players quickly became replaced by DVD’s. She grew up using computers,
recalling how even as a child she used Microsoft Word to type up brief
assignments. On family vacations to Lake Tahoe,
her family would use CD players for those eight-hour round-trip car rides.
“We still do these
trips but the only difference is that instead of CD players, we all have iPods.
We are a family of 6 and 4 of us have iPods,” she said.
runs the YPulse blog and is due to release her first book, “Totally Wired: What
Teens and Tweens Are Really Doing Online” next spring, which is about
demystifying the relationship between teens and technology. She said Wachtel’s
experience, like other teens', has been defined by communal links forged
“Napster and peer to
peer networks was a really defining moment for this generation and explains
their sense of entitlement around intellectual property. They grew up file
sharing,” Goodstein said.
A speech by Lee Rainie, director of the Pew Internet & American Life
Project, published in March, “Life Online: Teens and technology and the world
to come” described how “Millennials have a special relationship to technology.
They are not all tech-savvy…in the sense that they all know what’s going on
‘under the hood’ of their gadgets... but they have a unique attachment to the
communications power of these new technology tools.”
It’s an attachment
Goodstein said stems from some pivotal points in their upbringing.
“IM was a huge
development in that it revolutionized the way younger teens communicate with
each other — especially younger ones, they’re not going out quite as much.
They’re spending a lot of time on IM and text messaging finally taking off in
the states. All these are new ways for teens to stay hyper connected to each
other,” Goodstein said.
It’s such a part of
this generation’s daily life to maintain connectivity, said Beverly Wilkes, an
executive with Oz, a Montreal-based company whose gear allows IM programs to
function on cell phones.
“This is a technology
instant generation, instant with staying connected with group of friends,” she
said. “If you’re running to school you’re still able to chat with your friend…
In study period, you can’t jump on the phone, but you’re able to quietly tap
over a message and keep the conversation going.”
While Malcolm Gladwell
points to a select group of people who are natural “Connectors” who link to a
wide variety of people in “The Tipping Point,” this generation of students has
practically been reared to do that without thinking. They’ve tapped into the
communal kind of flow of information and have figured out quickly how to use
the technology they’ve got on hand to further it.
from their parents and finding new family with peers and they want to talk to
them constantly — whether that means commenting on MySpace, texting, IM’ing,
etc,” Goodstein said. “These are all these different ways to keep conversation
going digitally, 24-7. Any devices, any technology that helps them do that is
less about gear and gadgets and more about utility.”
Ten, 20 years ago,
going back to school meant shelling out for a new wardrobe and a Trapper
Keeper, she said. Now, it’s laptops, desktops and cell phones.
MySpace and YouTube
In a timeline of development for these teens, besides the aforementioned
technology, the major highlights would include: Internet based e-mail, laptops,
portable gaming, blogging/vlogging/podcasting, Friendster, MySpace and YouTube.
how important it is to maintain that connectivity through MySpace.
“I was against havng a
MySpace for a very, very long time. I claimed my house a ‘MySpace free zone’
for a while because I hated it when people came over and went on their MySpaces
to send comments and what not. Then one of my best friends made me one without
my consent and that is probably the only reason I have one today,” she said. “I
wouldn’t consider myself one of the many ‘MySpace addicts’ who go on five times
a day and compete for the amount of friends and constantly put up new pictures
of themselves hoping people will think it’s cool and comment on it. I simply go
on to keep in touch with people I hardly ever see or talk to.”
In Wachtel’s world,
pocket electronic dictionaries and Donkey Kong racing with her older brother
was the norm. Now, she finds herself on the computer every night either
typing up a report or doing research for a class. And in applying for colleges,
she downloads applications and finds out about the schools online.
When Stefani Beser, 19, of Pikesville, Maryland, applied to colleges two years
ago she did it all online, eventually ending up at the nearby Villa Julie
College, where she is about to begin her sophomore year.
“I personally though it
was easier,” she said. “With paperwork things get lost and ripped and you also
have to deal with postage.”
Like Wachtel, she grew
up with video games (a very early edition Gameboy), CD’s (her first one being
No Doubt’s “Tragic
Kingdom”) and always, a
portable CD player. While she didn’t get her first cell phone until she was 15,
her younger sister got one when she was 11 — a fact of how advanced and how
necessary that particular piece of mobility has become.
It wasn’t until about
third grade that Beser was introduced to the Internet by the school librarian.
“I remember at first
wondering, how does this work, and it got to be where I can’t live without it,”
Beser said. Like many people her age, she uses her computer for e-mail, IM’s,
music, video watching, some blogging, Facebook and MySpace.”
For her, IM’ing is a
means to an end. And parents, you might want to pay attention to what she’s
saying as your students go back to school this fall.
“I also think cell
phone bills can get expensive, so it’s easier to send a quick message,” she
said. “With college friends split up all over the country, it’s saving you a
lot of money and it’s still a conversation.”
From the cradle to
college, this is a generation that’s not only emerged as one of the most tech
efficient and adaptable, and more than ever, linked to peers learning and
adapting the same way.
© 2006 MSNBC Interactive
After reading our article for this week, we learned that people of
our generation are considered Digital Natives, meaning that our first
"language" is technology. Our first blog discussion will be a kind of
survey. Please copy the survey below, and then paste it into your
response, along with your answers. Please answer all of the questions,
and feel free to comment on someone else's survey response.
Your response is due BEFORE class on Friday.
What would you rather: be without TV or without internet?
Do you IM?
Do you Text?
What's your favorite website?
How long do you spend on the Internet each day?
Describe your parents' abilities and skills using the Internet/computers:
Do your parents limit/block your internet activity?
My main mode of communication is:
What do you think about sharing personal information on the internet? (name, hobbies, school, etc)
What's the first thing that pops into your mind when you hear the word:
Speaking of file sharing, what is your opinion of downloading music without paying for it? Is it stealing?
How could teachers better use technology in classrooms?
Are you a digital native or a digital immigrant? What about your parents?