Analyse and synthesis of the existing data

Comments about researches

The European landscape of research about Internet appropriation by young people (including the new portable audio-scripto-visual technologies) presents a deep contrast, facing a common techno-social process.

  • The national situations are really different. Even if it is possible to discover transversal links, often initiated by - or with the help of - EC institutions.
  • The presence of different stakeholder, and they respective influence seem to have a deep influence on the research, in every country.
  • The range of the topics and the methods to build scientific answers are broad, reflecting maybe more the disciplinal anchorage of the research institutions than the "nature" of reality.
  • The complexity of the approaches seems, in a certain way, to follow the technological level of equipment. The more the technology is used, the more the interrogating vision becomes complex. This interpretation, however, is clearer, if we consider researches about the use of Internet, than the use of portable telephones. Despite huge evolutions in term of spreading, kind of users and kind of uses, this latest technology seems not to be seen yet as "good" research topic.
  • The research reflects a very variable combination of the feeling of mistrust and feeling of confidence, corresponding to the fact that the society is crossed by two reverse currents, sometimes combined, where Internet and related technologies are seen as an opportunity or, at the contrary, as a danger.
  • The questioning come late and follows the technical proposals more than it precedes them. The model is not an assessment of the way Internet fulfils needs, but more the building of a list of issues, starting from social fears and from several facts reported by the media and regarded as serious.
  • They are still big unknown zones, especially about telephone and image, where the changes are more recent and the issues building less in progress.
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