Chapter 8: Youth Culture

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Gitte Stald has been researching mobile technologies since their early days of
adoption by younger audiences. In her talk, she focuses on adolescents and their
mobile media use. Stald shares her findings from the longitudinal and cross-cultural studies she has been conducting over the years. The chapter builds on findings from a Danish and a European context, but they can be expanded to think about mobile youth culture in general.
Gitte Stald discusses the concepts of digital natives and digital immigrants, sharing, immediacy, and the feeling of presence (or absent presence), social coordination, and the fluidity of time in digital society. The chapter also covers new topics such as the use of mobile phones in digital learning, fear of loss of privacy, power plays in digital interaction, and digital literacy. She talks about how the use of mobile phones in daily life facilitate peer interactions and shows how they allow youth carefully to curate and update the identities they project online, on the go and in real time. As such, Stald argues that mobile phones act as mediators for social engagement and sharing of personal information with others. Growing up with the technology, newer generations view their phones as indispensable to managing their social lives.
Stald observes that while being connected all the time gives youth a sense of
freedom, control and autonomy, their increasing access to mobile phones is a cause anytime, anywhere access to one another is now possible with mobile phones, time no longer has to be fixed, and can be negotiated.
The discussion at the end of the chapter focuses on how technology changes at
an increasing pace, and how its adoption changes the way we live and interact.
Mobile phone use influences interpersonal and group dynamics, from the smallest unit of society to large social movements, making it crucial for researchers to employ context-aware, collaborative and mixed-methods research to study this new technology.
Translated title of the contributionKapitel 8: Ungdomskultur
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDebates on Mobile Communication
EditorsAdriana de Souza e Silva
Number of pages16
Place of PublicationOxon, UK, New York, NY
Publication date2016
ISBN (Print)9781138691582
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Mobile
  • youth culture
  • social presence
  • Digital natives
  • Digital Literacy


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