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Young People and Web 2.0

Young People and Web 2.0

The concept of “Web 2.0” describes those recent developments of the internet, which offer the individual user increased possibilities for identity management, relationship management, and information management. Young people and adolescents belong to the most frequent users of weblogs, video platforms or “Social Network Sites” like studiVZ. However, there has not been much research into usage patterns among these age-groups as well as their consequences, e.g. as regards the shifting of boundaries between the public and private spheres, the attitudes to the protection of information or dealing with contents which are politically or otherwise extreme.

The Hans-Bredow-Institut is cooperating with the University of Salzburg in a project supported by the LfM Nordrhein-Westfalen [Media Authority North Rhine-Westphalia]. Case studies on selected platforms, focus groups and individual interviews with young users, and a representative survey about Web 2.0 use, in contrast to other media types, will give a comprehensive picture of the current status of the Internet among young people.

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Project Description

The findings from the various empirical steps as well as the review of the current status of international research are being discussed and connected to perspectives from sociology of communication, youth studies and legal studies. In this way, the need for action and the options in the areas of public communication, identity formation, media competences and media regulation can be formulated. Design and procedure of the empirical elements are closely connected to other specialised studies on media and young people both in Germany and abroad.

Findings and related research were documented and discussed in an accompanying weblog.

Project Information


Duration: 2007-2009

Research programme:
RP3 - Knowledge for the Media Society

Third party

Landesanstalt für Medien NRW (LfM)

Cooperation Partner

I. Paus-Hasebrink, C. Wijnen (Universität Salzburg)

Contact person

PD Dr. Jan-Hinrik Schmidt
Senior Researcher Digital Interactive Media & Political Communication

PD Dr. Jan-Hinrik Schmidt

Leibniz-Institut für Medienforschung | Hans-Bredow-Institut (HBI)
Rothenbaumchaussee 36
20148 Hamburg

Tel. +49 (0)40 45 02 17-83
Fax +49 (0)40 45 02 17-77

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