Tuesday, July 14, 2009

What teens’ cellphone mania means for the news business

A group of journalism students at Syracuse University examining how America’s youths use technology, about whom we wrote about this spring, just finished traveling to the original 11 Patchwork Nation communities and talking to people about how communications technology – everything from laptops to mobile phones – affects their daily life.

Words, pictures, and videos of those experiences are now available on their website, Young and the Wireless. The students’ final work, a part of the Knight Foundation’s News21 Project, won’t be on the site until August, but there are blogs – in words and video – worth a look.

The video “7 kids. 1 laptop. 2 hours of tape,” to name one, shows how one computer is passed from person to person within a family in El Mirage, Ariz., a heavily Hispanic “Immigration Nation” community. Note the age range of the kids involved and the amount of use. The group’s El Mirage blog, examining how the locals there use technology, is also an interesting read.

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