Exploring the conceptual frameworks that Norwegian children (aged 9-15) understand and use when discussing the Internet and digital media: EU Kids Online

Niamh Ní Bhroin, Mads Middelboe Rehder

    Publikation: Bog/antologi/rapport/kliniske retningslinjerRapportForskningpeer review

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    Abstract

    EU Kids Online is a multinational research network active in 33 European countries. In 2018, this network is conducting an international survey (on a country-by-country basis) about how children use the Internet. The survey seeks toenhance knowledge of European children's online opportunities, risks and safety. In Norway, the survey is being funded by the Ministry of Justice and Public Security, in part-fulfilment of their strategy for the prevention of violence in close relations.
    Previous research undertaken by the EU Kids online network indicates that Norway is a country where children use the Internet a lot. Their use is understood to be ‘independent’ and ‘sophisticated’ (Helsper, Kalmus, Hasebrink, Sagvari and De Haan, 2013). In 2016, 97% of Norwegian 9-16-year-olds were reported to own a mobile phone (91% of these were smart phones) and 64% to use one or more social media platform. Girls between the ages of 9 and 13 were more likely to use social media platforms than boys (Medietilsynet, 2017). At the same time, Norwegian children are understood to be vulnerable Internet users. Parents worry about the amount of time their children spend online, and the kind of content, or people they may encounter there (Staksrud and Livingstone, 2009; see also Livingstone, Mascheroni and Staksrud, 2017).
    In 2017, researchers in the Czech Republic undertook a cognitive test of the optional modules in the proposed EU Kids Online draft questionnaire (Bedrosova, Machackova, Dedkova and Smahel, 2017). Their research shows that conceptual understandings of the Internet and related technologies and experiences have evolved since the first EU Kids Online survey was conducted in 2009. While this may be unsurprising given the extent of technological and social change that has occurred during this time period, the researchers found that participating children did not understand concepts that were current and relevant in 2009, such as ‘chat room’; ‘social media’; and ‘blog' (Bedrosova et al. 2017, p. 6-12).
    Children who use the Internet do so in a variety of socio-technical contexts, i.e. at home, in school or in other institutional and/or private contexts (Drotner and Livingstone, 2008). They access and use different functions of the Internet and digital media (i.e. games, applications, search engines, social media). Furthermore, their interactions occur in multilingual contexts. Concepts relating to these contexts are interpreted, adapted, and used by children as part of their own conceptual framework (cf. Wei, 2011).
    Given this research context, we wanted to explore how Norwegian children used and understood the conceptual framework operationalised in the draft EU Kids Online questionnaire. We set out to explore how Norwegian children discuss their everyday use of the Internet and digital technologies. We focused on addressing the following research question:
    • How do Norwegian children (aged 9-15) use and understand the conceptual framework operationalised in the draft EU Kids Online questionnaire (2018)?
    OriginalsprogEngelsk
    ForlagOslo Universitet
    Antal sider20
    StatusUdgivet - sep. 2018

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