Visitors and Residents Digital Identities

In David White’s video “Visitors and Residents”, White first opened the video talking about digital natives and digital immigrants. What White meant by these two terms are that someone who grew up around technology will most likely be more knowledgable about technology, therefore they are native to the digital world, while digital immigrants are adults that grew up with limited or no contact with technology. This group of people is still able to learn technology, but it will take some time just as learning a new language. Thus, to answer the questions of how age has been used to analyze the success rate of digital technologies, the success rate will clearly be higher for digital natives because they grew up seeing, hearing, and using it every day. Digital immigrants aren’t totally a lost cause, but their success rate is lower due to learning capabilities. As people age, learning becomes harder and also, motivation to learn something difficult isn’t as strong as when they were younger.

Reflecting on myself, I’m a digital native, visitor and resident. I grew up using technology and I’m very familiar with all the features and usage of technology. I can easily learn new technologies with ease without needing much help. I also am a digital visitor by using the web for daily home repairs, DIY projects, and searching up questions that I’m curious about. I’m also a digital resident who have many social media profiles. Through these social media profile, I use them to network, meet with friends, and even offer my own perspectives on topics to the author.

Moving on, an interesting idea mentioned by Mesch was how we can’t group all youth into the same digital culture usage. A large portion of adolescents uses the internet to maintain connections and build relationships. I found this to be interesting because I also relied heavily on the internet to build relationships and maintain connections as an adolescent. It was an important phase in my life that allowed me to obtain the social skills I currently have now. I didn’t use the web much for other reasons, but mainly for social connection.

Another interesting idea from White & Le Cornu article “Visitors and Residents: A new typology for online engagement” was how digital immigrants’ accent are shown through resorting to the web second, instead of first when encountering a problem. I see this firsthand with my parents and I wonder why they didn’t think about searching it up on the internet first before struggling. Thinking more deeply about it made sense that it’s because they’re use to figuring it out themselves before turning to the internet. Since they didn’t grow resorting to the internet for help, it doesn’t appear right away in their brain to search up answers for any problem they encounter.

Lastly, I think it’s interesting that digital immigrants don’t necessary rely on the internet to solve all their problems. As a digital native, I want to stop relying so much on the internet to solve problems and solve it by myself. I want to push myself harder to solve a problem before resorting to the answer on the web.