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GLOBAL VILLAGE. Summary of Results November 2007. The Idea. Online Qualitative Research creates new possibilities for international research: Phenomenal growth of Internet usage in a wide variety of countries Multinational clients asking for multilingual research

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global village


Summary of Results

November 2007

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

the idea
The Idea
  • Online Qualitative Research creates new possibilities for international research:
    • Phenomenal growth of Internet usage in a wide variety of countries
    • Multinational clients asking for multilingual research
    • But online qualitative research is currently looked at rather sceptically outside of North America

Let us team up internationally and just DO it together!

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

project objective
Project Objective

Project set up to understand

current & potential future communications needs

of teensaround the world

who are using mobile phones

and computers with internet access

to communicate in their daily lives

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

  • A group of qualitative research consultant partners teamed up to test multilingual online qualitative research in their countries:
    • One bulletin board per country with 20 teenagers
    • 15-16year old boys & girls who use mobile phones & internet
    • Discussing the same core topics
    • Consecutive improvement of methods, and testing additional methods throughout the fieldwork to maximise our learning

This report shows some overall findings from the countries involved

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

research conducted across globe
Research conducted across globe

Canada - Susan Abbott

UK - Julia Gartside-Spink

Germany - Ilka Kuhagen

China- DavidYing Hon Ho

USA - Betsy Leichliter

US-Latino - Otto Rodriguez

France - Colette Chambon

Italy - Raf Manna

Brazil - Diva Oliveira

India - Piyul Mukherjee

South Africa - Corette Haf

Global Village – Summary - November 2007


Life of a Teenager in 2007

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

life of a teenager in 2007
Life of a Teenager in 2007
  • Most important are friends and social life
    • Meet in the city, hang out in parks/ in the city/ in restaurants
    • Shopping
    • Sports
    • Music, dance, partying
  • Love their pets
  • Education is important at this age
    • Especially in China and Germany school is perceived stressful
    • In South Africa and India education is clearly the key to success
  • Plans for life:

“Find a good job, be successful

and earn enough money in order to live well”

    • This is very obvious in India, while in some countries (Germany, UK, Italy..) the future seems less clear, and harder to achieve

Global Village – Summary - November 2007


German teenagers:

      • Appreciate the freedom compared to other cultures: kissing in public and drinking already at 16, no school uniforms
      • But school and exams dominate their lives and create stress
      • Some plan to go abroad or emigrate to have a better chance for success and to learn about other cultures

No uniforms

Global Village – Summary - November 2007


UK teenagers:

      • Developing sense of self and expressing themselves as individuals
      • Their likely/ potential future is an issue
      • The clear primary concern is crime – both personal risk but also from perceptions that all young people seen to pose a crime threat

Having fun, being happy

‘EMO’ culture (depressive)

Fashion item as well as music


Peer pressure to look the part

Love for friends and family – “My rocks!”

Global Village – Summary - November 2007


Italian teenagers:

      • Big difference girls (sense of building their future self, school is important) and boys (hanging out with friends)
      • Future work is a concern (esp. for girls)
      • Only minor crime concerns, hardly any interest in politics



Rockstar icons


Global Village – Summary - November 2007


Inspiration, arts, culture

Fashion items, must have

French teenagers:

Environment consciousness

Connected to the world

Style, individuality

Will to transgress

First temptations

First love


Parties, night life

Global Village – Summary - November 2007



Se Habla


  • US-Latino teenagers:
      • Though English is the preferred language, Spanglish is more effective
      • Keeping in touch with families and friends from country of origin is important
      • Strong concern to get into a good college
      • Proud to be able to live in a free country like USA

Global Village – Summary - November 2007


Chinese teenagers nowadays love how we want. No need to care about others’ view anymore.

Curious about things, learning from different cultures.

My PSP. Real, not counterfeit! Newest gadgets show we are progressive and always looking upwards!

Want style, individualism and freedom.

Like this ... feel close.

Hope of our mother country.

Want to break away from traditions.

Graffiti is standing for this era. We have the dark side as well as the sunny side.

Challenge oneself.

  • Chinese teenagers:
      • Values: Good career, good relationships (parents, family, friends), happiness
      • Aspire to make A LOT (not just enough) money!
      • Exams and parents are main sources of stress
      • Feel have less chance for success in China
        • Want to learn more about other cultures

Global Village – Summary - November 2007



      • Proud to be South Africans (Nelson Mandela, Charlize Theron as models)
      • Love the natural beauty of their country
      • Post Apartheid positives versus Aids, crime and corruption





Global Village – Summary - November 2007


Brazilian teenagers:

      • Value the right to have few responsibilities
      • Enjoy being able to dedicate this life stage to having fun
        • But reject being financially dependent on their parents
      • Try to find a good job
      • Violence is a central issue!







Global Village – Summary - November 2007



Usage of cell phones

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

feelings for cell phones

Like a pet, always around me

Feelings for Cell Phones
  • Picture sorting “What picture best represents your feelings for your mobile phone?” worked really well!
  • Different cultures, different countries, different languages chose the SAME pictures... for the SAME feelings!


‘On the go’

Connection, Friendship, Love

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

importance of cellphone
Importance of Cellphone
  • To most teenagers the cell phone is of utmost importance!
    • Not to miss out on anything!
    • A lot of texting with friends
    • Listen to music
    • Some phone calls, for urgent information
    • Snapshots of friends with photo and video
    • For security to get in touch with parents or other help
    • Cellphones areoften used as alarm and watch
  • Without their cell they would feelempty, naked, cut off from the world, lonesome, unsafe , sad, bored and antiquated!

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

day in life of cell phone
Day in Life of Cell Phone

Hello all this is R’s phone ! I never sleep!! but I do lose my voice , especially in the mornings when I am prone to giving R a headache! I’m a little scuffed but still cute. I don’t go with R to school so I’m lonely in the mornings! Afternoons and especially evenings I’m very spoilt cos I get a LOT of attention! Mxit is a staple at all times so I’m always plugged into the world wide web ,..not to mention my charger !! ha ha.  Weekends are by far the best cos I’m always at my boss's side!!! (SA)

Oulala.....7a.m.....let’s work !! I have to make her get out of the bed, this lazy girl !!! After having broken her dreams with my alarm, she put me directly into her school bag (she is too afraid of forgetting me) and the school day begins, like every other…Because she is overly stressed out and afraid to be late, she looks at me a lot during all her way to school, even though she knows very well that she is going to be 10 minutes ahead of schedule...Thanks to my « vibrating » mode, I stay on in her school bag even during lessons but I very rarely get out of it. During the break, a little glance at me (one never knows !?) to see if a new message is waiting for her...usually none, so I’m thrown back in the bag until the next break. Back home, I am directly put on the desk, she often forgets me, captivated by her computer or by something else. It may happen that I ring numerous times, and she’ll notice it only at the moment she is going to switch me off, she says she is thinking to look at me earlier next time, but…I’m switched off. (France)

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

the phone s side of the story
Being a teen's mobile has its highs…

Knowing everything that goes on between your owner and friends, and getting to go everywhere they go

Getting "tricked out" with cool ring tones, call tones, and wallpapers

Basking in the pride of faithful service, doing your job reliably and efficiently -- even to the point of power-tripping

“I am precious cargo to him because i am taken care of so well i even get to sleep on the pillow with him every night so he doesn't miss one text”

…but also has its lows…

Getting starved to death when your owner forgets to recharge or letting your owner down due to "crappy battery life“

Life-threatening accidents -- getting dropped, stepped on, dropped in the toilet


“I’m sick of getting thrown around when she gets mad - take it out on something else not me!!!”

“She gets frustrated [with my poor reception] and throws me, and slams my face shut. It's not really my fault though [it's Sprint]”

Fatiguedue to owner talking until 4am, or non-stop texting

Mental health - "going crazy" due to overuse/old age, or having a "bad attitude" due to a money-grubbing service provider

“… I do only what is required nothing more because it is just too much work. I don't care. All I care about is money. MONEY!!! …”

The phone's side of the story…

Global Village – Summary - November 2007


mobile phone channel choices
Mobile Phone Channel Choices

Current drivers of choice:

(√) = if at computer, and speed/cost is acceptable

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

relationship with my phone
Relationship with my phone

We are with each other ALL the time and most of the time, my phone is doing all the work for me (keeping my schedule, getting calls to me and receiving texts) while I'm the one in my casual clothes doing all the fun stuff!)

I treat it as if it means the world to me / I take care of it / Handle with care / Close to me

We are tight – meaning that I use it ALL the time

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

relationship with my phone company
Relationship with my phone company*

Lately my phone bill has been high. So i feel alot of tension and worriedness when its time to pay the bill

Service is excellent, great reception, no dropped calls, no weird increases on my bill that i'm not notified about. They offer packages just for me with an acceptable price range. Basically they make me happy

They’re always so helpful and always giving me thumbs up ideas on how to do cool stuff with my phone..

They're always "online" and ready to fix my phone when needed, or just answer   questions about my phone.

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

* Canada

use of the internet
Use of the Internet

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

computers for teenagers
Computers for Teenagers
  • Computers are “essential” to life of teenagers
  • Mainly used for communication purposes (email, chat, IM)
    • Networking also with distant friends
    • Catch up with friends, dates, etc.
    • Exchange thoughts with close friends
  • Computer helps balance a stressful day

Is like a friend

Can work off my frustrations & stress

Makes me happy!

Computer is important!

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

use of internet
Use of Internet

Teenagers explore the virtual world, creating new communities, visiting sites of their interest and making new friends around the world:

  • Chat!!! - With Instant Messaging: msn, icq, skype
  • Email
  • Social networking
  • Watch movies
  • Search
    • information for school
    • get information about the world
    • ...or just surf around...
    • disco – see where there is which party
    • download music
  • Play (esp. boys!)
  • Online shopping – only in some countries (Canada, USA, UK)

„I use the Internet probably 20 times more for fun - than for school!“

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

im chatting

It is easier than telephone, you need not pay and you can see whether the other person is there – it is so simple!

  • All teenagers use IMs and use it a lot!
    • Personal: “More personal than an email”
    • Instant: “Message gets there faster“, “ faster answer”
    • Flexible: “Many tools, smileys, types, colours, games”
    • Free “No costs – compared to the phone”
  • ICQ, MSN, SKYPE are the favorites
    • some also use it for VoIP
    • China uses QQ
  • Discussions are different than in a personal setting at school:
    • “We can talk more freely: nobody can interrupt or listen and laugh like at school”
    • “I would talk about topics I would never talk in person”
    • “There is a new topic every day ...”

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

english teenager english
English – Teenager - English
  • A new language has evolved: abbreviations, slang, phonetical...
    • “i wud love 2 hav sum features of the apple i phone nd also sum features nd if possible sumtin like a bond phone i knw aint ppssible bt if it cn b done mayb a GPS system or i mean many things sey viseo calling nd stuff even push 2 talk!!!!” (India)
    • “hi!!!gud mrng tannu..... how r u?? m gr8 2day n all set to continue...” (India)
    • “A will fiel misrubel” without my cellphone” (South Africa)

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

  • There are many local chatrooms, often combined with the networking groups
  • Teenagers use those chatrooms intensively:
    • Tend to be less personal, no personal details given
    • Talk about
      • Music
      • “Anything without having to show emotions”
      • “Can talk about anything without blushing”
    • Though, with too many people involved in the discussion can get “too overcrowded and hard to overview”
    • Anonymity is seen as advantage
    • Never want to meet anybody new really

“The difference to meeting at a real party is that you can enter at any time – day or night – without dressing up and you can talk about some things easier online than if you would meet in person.”

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

online communication


Online Communication

We have new topics every day

Social Networking

You would say things you would never say in person

Anonymous so you never need to blush!

Nobody can listen like when you talk at school with a friend

Meet friends of friends!

Sometimes get to know new people

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

google as an animal
Google as an animal...

Lion:the king of the Net (SA)

Dominates the jungle, others are like cats, clever, able to go anywhere but ridiculous when near the lion (Fr)

Always on the prowl and google is always looking for results (US-Latino)



Damned fast & intelligent (Ger)

Fast, effective & gets it right most of the time(SA)



Owl:Prudent, wise, clever, shrewd (Ger)

Chameleon:Colourful / changes on anything you want to know (SA)


Global Village – Summary - November 2007

current vs future computer as animal
Current vs. Future Computer as Animal

If my current computer were an animal it would be a squirrel because they are everywhere. The hard drive sounds like it's scurrying around and a lot of the time it will shut down and scurry around again trying to recover the file (like a squirrel trying to save it's nuts and berries and then trying to dig it up again). I want my next computer to be a cheetah because it's fast…and you never know what amazing thing it's going to do. it'd be a turtle because its soooo slow..hahaa, i'd like my next computer to be unique so i'd choose a squirrel monkey since they're small..

Global Village – Summary - November 2007


Global Village – Summary - November 2007

reaction to online discussion
Reaction to Online Discussion
  • Teenagers liked the format a lot!
    • It providedanonymity and allowed free answers, no need to blush
    • It gives them the freedom to use at their convenience
    • No need to go to a facility, could use from home
  • Still they thought it was time consuming!

„Their relief when got to the end was clear! „

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

teenagers feel comfortable discussing online
Teenagers feel comfortable discussing online!
  • Anonymity creates comfort!
    • “It was easy for me to open up. Thus I had never a feeling that anybody would watch or observe me”
    • “I felt very comfortable and secure to share all my private feelings”
    • “.. because it was anonymous you could open up easily, not risking to be embarrassed”
    • “being anonymous you could really share your utmost private details, and then the others would probably open up as well as they would see that there is no reason to be scared”

Global Village – Summary - November 2007

bulletin board format
Bulletin Board format
  • Convenient participation:
    • respondents and observers log in any time
    • stay as long or as short as their schedule permits
    • allows for variations in school/ extra-mural/ weekend activities
  • Technology:
    • less fast-paced than Real Time FG’s
    • no fast typing or reading speed required
    • ideal for respondents new to this methodology
    • good for countries with slower internet speed
  • Depth and richness of responses:
    • topics that require thoughtful answers
    • detailed responses
    • interactive discussions
  • Anonymity
    • promotes disclosure of deeper, more personal, candid responses

Global Village – Summary - November 2007