Analysis: Digital 'Natives' Invade the Workplace

Source Organization: Pew Research Center

09/28/2006 - As consultant Marc Prensky calculates it, the life arc of a typical 21-year-old entering the workforce today has, on average, included 5,000 hours of video game playing, exchange of 250,000 emails, instant messages, and phone text messages, 10,000 hours of cell phone use. To that you can add 3,500 hours of time online.

Our work at the Pew Internet Project shows that an American teen is more likely than her parents to own a digital music player like an iPod, to have posted writing, pictures or video on theinternet, to have created a blog or profile on a social networking web site like MySpace, to have downloaded digital content such as songs, games, movies, or software, to have shared a remix or“mashup” creation with friends, and to have snapped a photo or video with a cell phone.

"Today’s younger workers are not ‘little us-es,’” argues Prensky, an educator, gamingexpert, author of Don’t Bother Me, Mom – I’m Learning. “Their preference is for sharing, staying connected, instantaneity, multi-tasking, assembling random information into patterns, and usingtechnology in new ways. Their challenge to the established way of doing things in the business world has already started.”

Read the full report Digital 'Natives' Invade the Workplace on the Pew Internet & American Life Project Web site.

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