Friday, November 14, 2008

The kids are alright

Those of you like me with teenagers in the house will be heartened by this report from The Economist:
The Generation Raised on the Internet: The Kids Are Alright

Mr Tapscott identifies eight norms that define Net Geners, which he believes everyone should take on board to avoid being swept away by the sort of generational tsunami that helped Barack Obama beat John McCain. Net Geners value freedom and choice in everything they do. They love to customise and personalise. They scrutinise everything. They demand integrity and openness, including when deciding what to buy and where to work. They want entertainment and play in their work and education, as well as their social life. They love to collaborate. They expect everything to happen fast. And they expect constant innovation.

...Net Geners are much more positive than their predecessors about their family. Half of those interviewed regard at least one parent as their “hero”. Mr Tapscott believes the internet is producing an improved, more collaborative version of family life, which he calls the “open family”. Parents increasingly recognise that their youngsters have digital expertise they lack but want to tap, and also that their best defence against their children falling foul of the dark side of the internet, such as online sexual predators, is to win their children’s trust through honest conversation. Ironically, Mr Tapscott’s recommended “platform” for this essential social networking could hardly be more old tech: the family dinner table.

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