RWS Paper #3 Draft 11.27.18

In what many call the “age of technology”, one has countless resources made available at their fingertips through technological advancements and social media. It also seems that to many members of older generations, today’s youth has acquired any and all knowledge of technology, since they were born into it, and it has always been a skill of theirs. In her piece titled “It’s Complicated, The Social Lives of Networked Teens” author Danah Boyd asserts that this is not the case. She argues that teens only know what they need to for their everyday lives, and having mastered these daily tasks, it may seem that they know how to do everything, when in fact they only know what they absolutely need to. Adults on the other hand, have had to learn technological skills at a later age in life, and it has been scientifically proven that one has more difficulty learning new skills when they are older. Boyd coined the terms “digital native” for those who grew up learning any and all technological skills they would need in life; and “digital immigrant” for those who are tasked with learning later in life what others grew up with. Her overall argument is that although there are some that have been surrounded by technology since they were born, and there are others who are learning the same skills at a later point in their lives, neither group holds the key to unlocking all that technology can do for us. Both older and younger generations can benefit from learning more than just the bare minimum of knowledge regarding technology. Only through learning and exploring can we further our technological society and unlock the plethora of benefits technology we have yet to discover.

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