When reflecting upon Rheingold’s point of using ICT’s enthusiastically and nimbly, I was immediately reminded of those in my life who have also progressed through the process of becoming media-literate. Those from the previous generations are often hesitant when it comes to using internet and mobile technologies because of the overwhelming unknowns they must face. Rheingold mentions, “Evidence suggests that people do well as networkers if they are not timid about technology. Although diving into this world may be challenging at first, I have personally witnessed how becoming media-literate can provide an individual with the ability to find information, assess it, and react to it. My mom is the perfect example as one who had no technology or computer skills, in addition to limited English proficiency. Soon we realized neither of these reasons were reasonable in holding her back from being an avid media user. Once she jumped into the world of Wechat and Facebook, her enthusiasm to broaden her networks increased and motivated her to explore new digital tools. She became a participant in the many diverse networks and can now function independently when participating in her networks.

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One thought on “Enthusiastic Networkers

  1. Although my mom is proficient in English she struggles with using technology in her day-to-day life. When a new phone is purchased or she updates the home computer I am forced to come home and visit for a day to help walk her through the do’s and don’ts of her new found media. When I think specifically about people needing to learn how to use online media and technology as a way to learn, create, and react to the world around us I instantly think of how lucky kids are. Kids are often begin raised with these things around them and teaching themselves how to use phones, computers, tablets, and so much more. The point you brought up makes me think then, what are some ways that we can provide education for older generations who would benefit from being able to use these things? I wonder if local community colleges or volunteer groups would put on “tech classes” to teach people who are no longer in school and have easy access to digital literacy and online media, how to maneuver these things. What are your thoughts on that?

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