Thursday, February 21, 2008

Girls Online

Quick note: This article in the NY Times about teen girls and their behavior online is informative and a little provocative, whether you're writing about them or for them. Check it out.

Interesting bits include this:

" . . . a study published in December by the Pew Internet & American Life Project found that among Web users ages 12 to 17, significantly more girls than boys blog (35 percent of girls compared with 20 percent of boys) and create or work on their own Web pages (32 percent of girls compared with 22 percent of boys)."
With this rationale:

"Teasing out why girls are prolific Web content creators usually leads to speculation and generalization. Although girls have outperformed boys in reading and writing for years, according to the National Center for Education Statistics, this does not automatically translate into a collective yen to blog or sign up for a MySpace page. Rather, some scholars argue, girls are the dominant online content creators because both sexes are influenced by cultural expectations.

“'Girls are trained to make stories about themselves,' said Pat Gill, the interim director for the Institute for Communications Research and an associate professor of gender and women’s studies at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign."

Interesting . . . The whole thing is worth a read.

(Also, I think it's interesting that they put this article in the style section. That alone might answer some of the questions the article raises.)


Heather said...

Not only are girls trained to "make stories about themselves"-- but the crafting and sharing of these stories is inherently relational. Girls grow their stories (and selves!) through these kinds of interactions. SO interesting. Carol Gilligan started talking about this years ago but now In A Different Voice has gained new relevance. I know there's quite an amazing story in here somewhere... certainly NOT for the Style section.

elizabeth genco said...

I always find something cool to read or something that I missed when I come over here. Thanks, Andrew.

(ps: "The Shape Of Water" looks amazing; can't wait to hear more about it.)