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How much time do Danish youngsters spend on social network sites? February 14, 2008

Posted by Malene Charlotte Larsen in PhD Data, Social networking sites, Survey, Youth.

As promised, I would blog in English about the new survey on Danish young people’s experiences on social network sites. I can start off with something simple; the amount of time that they spend on social network sites.

According to the questionnaire, 30,9 % of the Danish users between the age of 12 and 18 spend more than two hours a day on SNS:

[Respondents’ answers to the question: ”How often do you use communities or social network sites?”]

Please note that these are not average numbers for all Danish teenagers, but reflect the amount of time that users of social network site between the age of 12 and 18 spend on the sites that they themselves consider to be social network sites. In the questionnaire we did not predefine SNS as we wanted the respondents’ take on it. Many of them consider MSN Messenger to be a social network site/community/chat portal as well.

In the category “Other” many of the wrote “All the time” or informed that they spend up to four, five or even ten hours a day on social network sites.

About the survey
The survey was conducted in 2007 together with The Danish Media Council for Children and Young People. It consisted of an online questionnaire with both factual questions about media habits and use as well as questions to which respondents could answer qualitatively. 2400 youngsters between the age of 12 and 18 years old answered the questionnaire with personal views on as well as examples from their online experiences.

New survey: Young people’s experiences on social network sites February 12, 2008

Posted by Malene Charlotte Larsen in PhD Data, Safer Internet Day, Social network sites, Survey, Youth.
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Today is Safer Internet Day 2008. In that connection the Danish Media Council and I launch some of the results from our online survey about Danish children and young people’s use of social network sites. See more about the survey here.

Download press release.

Download fact sheet with central findings.

Unfortunately, the documents are in Danish, but I promise to blog about the central findings in English when I have more time. Now I have to get ready for the Safer Internet Day event in the Experimentarium in Copenhagen.

Go’ morgen Danmark February 11, 2008

Posted by Malene Charlotte Larsen in Media coverage, News media, PhD Data, Social Networking, Survey, Youth.
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Tomorrow morning at 7.15 I will be in “Go’ morgen Danmark” on TV2 (Danish television). I will be talking about the new survey I did with the Danish Media Council for Children and Young People. See more about the show here.

Live TV from Safer Internet Day February 11, 2008

Posted by Malene Charlotte Larsen in Internet Safety, Safer Internet Day.
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safer-internet-day-2008-banner.gifTomorrow at Safer Internet Day the social network site Netstationen will be covering the event from their online TV channel.

See Netstationen’s online tv channel here – live tomorrow between 12.00 -15.00.

New survey on young people, sex and the internet February 7, 2008

Posted by Malene Charlotte Larsen in Internet, Sex, Youth.

A new Danish survey dealing with young people’s use of the internet to purchase or sell sex shows that every tenth of the participants in the survey has received payment.

2367 Danish young people between the age of 14 and 24 have participated in the survey.

  • 79,8 % of them have never given or received any payment for sex – and don’t know anyone who has.
  • 9,8 % of them know someone who has either given or received payment for sex.
  • 9,1 % of them have received some kind of payment for sex.
  • 1,3% of them have given some kind of payment for sex.

The study is conducted by Cyberhus, a Danish online community for children and young people run by social workers, for Aarhus City Council. Read more about the study here and read the whole report here (only in Danish).

It is important to know that one cannot simply conclude that one out of every tenth youngster in Denmark has received payment for sex. As project coordinator, Jonas Ravn, says in a newsletter from Cyberhus:

Man kan ikke ud fra undersøgelsen konkludere, at hver 10. unge i Danmark har solgt sex. Men 9,1 procent af de unge, der har valgt at deltage i vores undersøgelse, har fået betaling for at levere seksuelle ydelser. Men egentlig er det ikke undersøgelsens primære mål at undersøge omfanget, men at se på, om og hvordan de unge bruger nettet til at lave aftaler om sex.

Also, the definition of payment includes not only money, also but material things such as alcohol, cigarettes and clothes.

Furthermore, the study shows that the sale and payment of sex often take place between friends and acquaintances. And most often as a sudden impulse.

Is “Stop Pretty Boys” any different from reality tv? February 6, 2008

Posted by Malene Charlotte Larsen in Facebook, Reality tv.

Yesterday the Danish news media reported on a new Facebook group called “Stop Pretty Boys!” (see e.g. press coverage here, here or here). The group was created by two Danish students as a joke and in order to ridicule boys who care about their looks, wear tight clothes, make-up or a lot of self tanning cream etc. On the site the creators upload pictures of boys/men who they consider to be “pretty boys” and the members of the group then make fun of and comment on the pictures. According to the news media, this is the fastest growing Facebook group in Denmark (at the moment there are slightly over 28.000 members).

A couple of journalists called me up yesterday to ask me what I think of this group, if it is a form of bullying, a new Facebook trend and so forth. First of all, as a researcher I really don’t have any opinion about this group. I have not been following it and know very little about it. Therefore, I didn’t want to comment on it. Second of all, I do not consider this kind of public ridicule to be a new “trend” or “phenomenon” in relation to online social networking. It is not what online social networking is really about and it is in stark contrast to the normal loving discourse between IRL-friends on social network sites. (more…)

Safer Internet Day 2008 February 5, 2008

Posted by Malene Charlotte Larsen in Internet Safety, PhD Data.
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safer-internet-day-2008-banner.gifNext Tuesday, February 12, I am participating in “Safer Internet Day 2008“.

Safer Internet Day is a yearly event organised by Insafe, the European internet safety network. Last year 43 countries from all over the world participated in the event.

This year’s theme is “Life online is what YOU make of IT”. I am participating in the Danish part of the event which takes place at the science museum, the Experimentarium, in Copenhagen and is arranged by The Danish Media Council for Children and Young People. Here, many of the most popular social network sites for children and young people in Denmark, like Arto.dk, Habbo.dk, Netstationen.dk, MSN.dk and Cyberhus.dk, will participate both online and offline. See the Danish programme here.

During the event I will be presenting some of the primary results from the online questionnaire about young people’s use of social network sites that I launched last year at Safer Internet Day together with the Media Council. There are some really interesting data on the different experiences – both good and bad – that Danish youngsters have online. I will upload a small fact sheet presenting the data on the actual day. (However, as the data are part of my PhD project I haven’t deeply or theoretically analysed them yet. But some preliminary conclusions can be drawn.)

Watch the official Safer Internet Day 2008 video clip here.