Hanging Out, Messing Around, and Geeking Out: Kids Living by Mizuko Ito, Sonja Baumer, Matteo Bittanti, danah boyd,

By Mizuko Ito, Sonja Baumer, Matteo Bittanti, danah boyd, Rachel Cody, Becky Herr-Stephenson, Heather A. Horst, Patricia G. Lange, Dilan Mahendran, C. J. Pascoe, Dan Perkel, Laura Robinson, Christo Sims, Lisa Tripp, Katynka Z. Martínez

An exam of younger people's daily new media practices—including video-game taking part in, text-messaging, electronic media construction, and social media use.

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Additional resources for Hanging Out, Messing Around, and Geeking Out: Kids Living and Learning with New Media (The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Series on Digital Media and Learning)

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The growing availability of digital media-production tools, combined with online networks that traffic in rich media, is creating convergence between mass media and online communication (Benkler 2006; Ito 2008a; Jenkins 2006; Shirky 2008; Varnelis 2008). Rather than conceptualize everyday media engagement as “consumption” by “audiences,” the term “networked publics” foregrounds the active participation of a distributed social network in the production and circulation of culture and knowledge. The growing salience of networked publics in young people’s daily lives is part of important changes in what constitutes the relevant social groups and publics that structure young people’s learning and identity.

By shifting the focus away from the individual and to the broader network of social relationships, situated learning theory suggests that the relationships of knowledge sharing, mentoring, and monitoring within social groups become key sites of analytic interest. In this formulation, people learn in all contexts of activity, not because they are internalizing knowledge, culture, and expertise as isolated individuals, but because they are part of shared cultural systems and are engaged in collective social action.

The chapter follows a trajectory of deepening engagement with creative production, beginning with casual personal media production and then discussing how youth get started with more serious commitments to creative work and how they improve their craft, specialize, collaborate, and gain an audience. The final chapter, “Work” examines how youth are engaged in economic activity and other forms of labor using new media. The chapter suggests that new media are providing avenues to make the productive work of youth more visible and consequential.

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