The Internet & Teen Sexuality Section 06 Chereen Zaki - Ashley Mannes - Qres Ephraim Lydia Kelow - Stephanie Kwak - Audai Shakour
PerezHilton.com - Example of popular literature that promotes promiscuity
The Issue How does the Internet affect the way that teens/youth express and construct their sexuality?
Does the Internet make access to sexually explicit material easier? • Is it more prevalent on Social Networking websites? Does the Internet and Social Networking sites encourage sexual content and open-mindedness?
Our case study question was broad due to: • Gaps in the literature • Teen sexuality a taboo topic, teens (minors, children) are a protected group • Most helpful to focus on future areas of study
DISCIPLINES • Communication • Teens use of the Internet to communicate their sexuality • Sociology • Social factors that influence the expression of sexuality on the internet • Why these disciplines? • We wanted a more complete view of the process (structuration theory) • Interviews • Ex: “Social Networking sites (i.e. Facebook, Myspace, etc.) encourage sexual content.” • Demographics: Adults, Teachers, Young Adults, and Teens
COMMUNICATION DISCIPLINE What are the socio-psychological and socio-cultural implications of Internet content on youth? Additional focus on cybernetic and rhetorical communication
COMMUNICATION DISCIPLINE • Gaps: • Youth language codes • Internet as the new Sex Ed. • Methods: • Conduct focus groups and surveys to explore teen use of the internet and sexuality • Rhetorical analysis of codes on homepages
SOCIOLOGY DISCIPLINE • Critical, qualitative and positivist (empirical) perspectives
SOCIOLOGY DISCIPLINE Gaps: Internet influence on social structures, specifically teen culture Teen demographics and internet use (hypersegmentation and massification) Methods: Empirical investigation through surveys and interviews Critical analysis of teen sexuality in the broader culture
ADVANTAGES OF AN INTERDISCIPLINARY CCT PERSPECTIVE
CAUTIONS WITH INTERDISCIPLINARY PERSPECTIVE Tendency to draw too strong of a distinction between analysis of social groups and social organization, and the medium, when both are actually in play (structuration theory) Significant overlap in the two perspectives we chose
RESEARCH PLAN • Longitudinal study of teen use of the internet in understanding and expressing sexuality • Surveys: demographics, HOW teens use the internet to communicate sexuality • Content analysis—based on what teens say they use, we can analyze homepages and chat rooms for codes • Critical analysis—reading the results using frameworks of social structures (e.g. contingency, mass media, convergence)
CONCLUSION The influence of the internet on teen sexuality is a broad topic that needs focus investigation and multiple methodologies. We also would like to expand our research to other forms of technology, since sexuality is clearly pervasive across multiple platforms. For example, sexting phenomenon.