Monday, April 14, 2008
Youth Public vs. Adult Public
This is a huge issue today and one that I am familiar with because when my little brother, who is 14, created his Myspace page last year my parents came to me with questions. They knew I had an account but never worried much about it because I didn't create mine until I was a senior in high school and to be honest they didn't know much about it. Neither of them are computer savvy enough to know the risks that it can entail but began to worry and have questions when the dangers of Myspace became public chit chat in our town, on the news and in papers. I agree that there are dangers on these websites when users post phone numbers, addresses, very personal information, as well as when they begin to accept "friends" on the site they do not know at all. But, for the most part in what I have seen through surfing my brothers page and his friends pages is that they are merely using them as a teen outlet. It is a way to "be cool", represent yourself, vent about frustrations and hardships experienced during those frustrating years of junior high and high school. And as I told my parents, from what I have seen with my brother and most of his friends pages they are not accepting strangers as friends, their profiles are private, and even better, many of them don't even use their real names, ages, or locations. I believe my brothers says that he is 50 years old and lives in "where ever you want it to be, CA". I find most of the content on his page extremely funny and harmless, and I do check up on his page often because I promised I would keep a watch out for my parents. But truthfully I think the source of this struggle between the youth public vs. the adult public regarding these network sites is the mere fact that these sites are in the unknown to most adults, which leaves them worried and stressed. I think they need to be understanding to the fact that this is a new age and these sites and much of the internet culture today is different and exploratory, and is not an area of their expertise.