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Different Social Networks Are... Different

CmdrTaco posted more than 7 years ago | from the also-salt-tastes-salty dept.

89

An anonymous reader writes "International Business Times reports that not all online social networks are the same, according to new research released this week. Internet research firm, comScore Networks, said on Thursday that significant age differences exist between the user bases of these websites. "While the top social networking sites are typically viewed as directly competing with one another, our analysis demonstrates that each site occupies a slightly different niche," commented Jack Flanagan, executive vice president of comScore Media Metrix."

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89 comments

more FUD from the myspace crowd (-1, Troll)

Asshat_Nazi (946431) | more than 7 years ago | (#16363525)


ENOUGH OF THIS GAY BANTER, ON WITH THE TROLLING!!!

8====D~~



During my years as a councilor at a Boy Scout camp, I have had the chance of many experiences. The chance to see naked boys in the community showers and the sight of sexy bodies going for a dip in the lake but one memory comes back clearer than ever.

First let me introduce myself. My name is Joshua, but friends call me Josh for short, I am 17 years old and about 5 foot 11 with a really toned body. I run 2 mile each morning right after I wake up to keep myself in shape. I had always loved the outdoors and I have plans to be a teacher when I got older so I thought teaching kids is going to be a great experience for me and that's how I became involved in the scouting program.

It was my second year at scout camp being a councilor and that comes with some major seniority, and that was the ability to have the over 21 staff buy me alcohol. One night after a stressful day of working with a bunch of crying whiny little kids I decided its time to crack open my 1/5 of jack. I sit back in my tent relaxed just slowly drinking the night away when Caleb popped his head into my tent. He was 16 years old with a body to die for, he was center for his High School football team and had a six
pack any guy would give his left nut for.

"Hey josh," Caleb muttered, I could tell he had been drinking, " come over to my tent, I cant find my flash light." So I stand to the best of my ability and stumble following him over to his tent, and fall in, shining my light around till he finds his. Then I take the last drink of my jack and lay the bottle down why I lay there looking up into the dark tent ceiling. All of a sudden my dick began to get rock hard as a thought of a plan. I pulled my 8 inch dick out and started jacking off and said "Caleb I am going to masturbate in your tent." "Na you wouldn't dare do anything like that" he replied as he shined his flashlight on my hand as I slowly pumped my cock. He looked at my cock with wide eyes as I began to pump a little faster. I saw him reach over and take off his boxers and began to play with his 5-1/2 inch cock. I laughed at him and said "Wow you really do have a small cock why don't you jack me off and see how it is to hold a real cock on this boy hands."

He looked at me and shook his head no, I reach over and forced his hand away from his cock and began to jack him off he followed suit and began to do the same with me. It feel good because he was going at a fairly fast pace and I began to moan softly. Then he did something I didn't expect he move his mouth over my dick and began to softly suck it. His bobbed his head up and down making sure to please my dick equally with his tongue. He moved his dick over my mouth and I began to suck it, taking it in inch by inch till I hit his pubes then I began to take it in and out slowly. I took my mouth off his dick and used my tongue to pleasure the left ball then the right, then taking them both into my mouth being careful. As we continued to 69 it up, I thought I heard a noise outside so I moved slightly and apparently he took this as a sigh to stop and got off, I was pissed so I grabbed his hand and placed it back on my cock as he began to jerk me off again he got up took off his boxers and said to me Fuck me josh, Fuck me hard"

I couldn't resist this little hot stud so I placed him on the floor and put my cock to his virgin hole and began to softly push inward. I heard him grunt softly as in pain and I stopped; keeping my cock still it was about half way in. Keep going I heard him mutter and I began to put more pressure till my pubes touched his ass. I said here we go as I began to slowly fuck this tight virgin man hole enjoying each pleasure able in and out I took. I began to pump faster and faster letting my balls made contact with his ass.

i am Cumming I muttered as I released 5 huge squirts of my man juice inside his virgin hole. I quickly drew out and turned him over and began to give him a blow job leaving nothing in question and within 30 seconds my mouth was filled full of this studs seed as I drank each gulp that he so graciously gave me. I gave him a firm kiss on the lips and said Good night my Caleb as I walked back to my tent and fell asleep at 2:09.

Also here (5, Informative)

Kangburra (911213) | more than 7 years ago | (#16363535)

The original press release [comscore.com]

Re: voice driven social networking (0, Offtopic)

dean.collins (862044) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369549)

I still think there needs to be a voice component to social networking.

I have a few clients who are using our Mexuar Corraleta technology for voice driven dating (www.mexuar.com or www.Corraleta.com ) but these guys are primarily driven by 1900 'adult' billing so they are using a credit card to 'time charge' their web interface.

I'm looking forward to working with a customer who wants to implement a free for all "click to talk" strategy on a social networking site for voice interaction.

BTW if you want to see a demo and are going to be in Dallas for Astricon we launch our USA sales on the 24th of October.

Cheers,
Dean
www.Mexuar.com

Submission info (5, Informative)

MECC (8478) | more than 7 years ago | (#16363563)

It seems that /. is getting submissions with less and less substance. The submission linked a 204 word blurb that predictably had information content somewhere inbetween zero and nothing (it was a 'business times' site after all). The actual comscore article is here. [comscore.com] It has some interesting data.

"from the also-salt-tastes-salty dept." (2, Funny)

Spazntwich (208070) | more than 7 years ago | (#16363743)

That must be him swallowing the advertiser's load.

Re:"from the also-salt-tastes-salty dept." (0, Offtopic)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 7 years ago | (#16363835)

You know, I don't usually like troll-y comments, but that was spot on. (And humorous, too.)

I don't even mind the karma I'm going to lose from this post.

It's Inevitable (1)

ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) | more than 7 years ago | (#16364627)

It seems that /. is getting submissions with less and less substance.
That's because Slashdot submissions are selected on the basis of quantity, not quality.

It's like this. Currently the Slashdot selection process is random or quasi-random. It's safe to assume that selection is based less on individual submission quality as it is based on the likelihood of that submission being randomly, or quasi-randomly selected for consideration by the editor. The key to getting a submission on the front page is to spam as many submissions as is possible.

Now, it's probable that to combat this, the editors long since had a very basic anti-spam system set up. Nothing too fancy, just a prevention against competely or nearly identical submissions. Because of this, each successive spam submission will require slight modification. Therefore to keep up a high quantity of submissions, quality will have to suffer. Witness [slashdot.org] the proof [slashdot.org] that this kind of spamming is indeed occuring.

Meanwhile, submitters of quality summaries become successively demoralised by lack of recognition, and simply don't bother to submit any more. I know I did. This feeds back on itself as the editors, desperate for some meager level of quality, troll through more and more stories. Hence to prevent a quality submission being selected over their own poor ones, the submission spammers must flood the system with ever increasing quantities of low grade material. The end result is that your carefully laid out and checked submissions will be rejected within minutes.

There are a number of possible solution to this situation, none of which have been attempted by the Slashdot editorial team. This situation has arisen from what a Software Quality treastie would call; "A Failure of Process". It's not so much individuals actions that are broken so much as the whole system needing makeover.

Re:It's Inevitable (1)

Deven (13090) | more than 7 years ago | (#16366081)

Excellent analysis. I've spent 30 minutes before writing a well-researched summary with links to informative pages, on topics of clear interest to the community, only to have them randomly rejected with no explanation. As a result, I've mostly given up on submitting stories -- it's a waste of my valuable time.

An obvious solution presents itself -- extend the moderation system to allow moderators to rate stories, much like Kuro5hin does. Then present only the +5 (or maybe +10) stories to the editors to be approved or denied. Better yet, require every such rating to be accompanied by a comment explaining why the story was ranked +1, 0 or -1 by the moderator, and show that list of comments to the editor and the original submitter.

And create a mechanism for moderators to link duplicate sumissions together, so that the editors can see all the related submissions together and select the best one -- and automatically reject the rest as duplicates once one of the submissions is accepted.

Such a system could raise the quality of the stories substantially, and actually make it worthwhile to submit stories...

Re:Submission info (1)

Cruise_WD (410599) | more than 7 years ago | (#16364675)

Thanks for that link - interesting stats indeed.

Just looking at the total percentages across all the sites makes interesting reading - it suggests the the 35-45 crowd are actually the biggest users of social sites - the percentage is highest for them on all sites apart from facebook, and that's only half a percent behind.

Why have these sites acquired such a reputation then as teen-havens? Is it simply they're the most vocal or aggressive socialites? Or the numbers "Just Plain Wrong"(tm)?

and this is news? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16363585)

and this is news?

Re:and this is news? (1)

aplusjimages (939458) | more than 7 years ago | (#16364003)

I've got additional news. Different e-mail services offer different features. Mind blowing I know.

Re:and this is news? (1)

Bastard of Subhumani (827601) | more than 7 years ago | (#16364997)

That's pretty amazing, ... er, report coming in - hold the front page - it seems different cars appeal to different demographic segments - young and fashionable, parents with small children, the elderly. Do you think that might be, ummm, intentional, Bob?

What's the film? It's on at eleven, right?

I hate those kind of sites.. (1)

glowingsnowball (973747) | more than 7 years ago | (#16363597)

I know that a lot of people like them but why? It is like the kid who has an online girl friend you just make fun of him because she's not real. Myspace is full of more fake people then anywhere. If you have real friends you can leave them a message but you probably see them everyday so its a waste. It was ok when myspace was for emo kids but its out of hand. This [youtube.com] video explains it all for me.

MySpace is now mostly older men because... (0)

xxxJonBoyxxx (565205) | more than 7 years ago | (#16363643)

You think MySpace is now mostly populated by older men because it used to mostly be populated by teenage girls? (Or teenage boys; ask your local Republican about that.)

Re:MySpace is now mostly older men because... (4, Insightful)

Lemmy Caution (8378) | more than 7 years ago | (#16363803)

I created a MySpace account because I like new and unusual music. In my experience, people in their 20's and 30's are more interested in unsigned bands and new music than teenagers are. In fact, the person who sent me a "request" to join MySpace was a composer of experimental "classical" music whose work I've followed for years!

MySpace has become virtually obligatory for musicians, and may be part of the path to breaking the major labels' control of the music production and distribution system.

I still can't stand MySpace, though. Hideous, hideous pages.

Re:MySpace is now mostly older men because... (2, Insightful)

jfengel (409917) | more than 7 years ago | (#16364453)

I think that may be because the music industry targets teenagers. I'm not entirely certain why; teenagers don't have as much money as the 20-and-ups. Perhaps because they're more homogeneous: rather than produce 20 indie bands to hit 20 million 30-year-olds, they can produce 1 band to hit 15 million teenagers with easily-led tastes.

Re:MySpace is now mostly older men because... (1)

ottothecow (600101) | more than 7 years ago | (#16374111)

I think you hit the second bit on the head of the nail, you can sell the same thing to TONS of teens before they grow up/go to college and develop their own tastes. The way that teens are kept in close contact with only those people of their exact age group tends to allow for enormous growth of fads (and thats essentially what top 40 music is).

As for the first part of your question, they may have less incomes but they are generally said to have greater disposable income. When they start to get their first job, its not hard to blow all of the paycheck on music or the such. Even before they are working, the money their parents give them is more disposable and they have the power to coerce their parents into buying the CD for them.

Re:MySpace is now mostly older men because... (1)

Gilmoure (18428) | more than 7 years ago | (#16364671)

Maybe it's because musicians pay attention to their ears and don't notice the visual atrocities that is MySpace?

Re:MySpace is now mostly older men because... (4, Funny)

VAXcat (674775) | more than 7 years ago | (#16364311)

That reminds me of the famous quote by an economist, can't remember who, who said, that for instance, at a ski lodge, there are many young girls looking for husbands, and many husbands looking for young girls, but the situation is not exactly transitive...

Re:MySpace is now mostly older men because... (1)

starkravingmad (882833) | more than 7 years ago | (#16373715)

Of course it's not transitive.. that would imply that young girls are looking for husbands, husbands are looking for young girls, therefore young girls are looking for young girls. If my memory of ski lodges and young girls serves me right, that isn't true.

I think you meant symmetric, not transitive..

Re:MySpace is now mostly older men because... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16366725)

"You think MySpace is now mostly populated by older men because it used to mostly be populated by teenage girls? (Or teenage boys; ask your local Republican about that.)"

Yes, because its a well known fact that all Republican's molest little boys.

Shocking! (2, Funny)

Atraxen (790188) | more than 7 years ago | (#16363647)

Wait, you're telling me that Craigslist, Myspace, and MoveOn.org have different audiences? Say it ain't so!

Thank the gods that Mark Foley has been bridging the gap between the Congressional Record and the A/S/L generation...

This is an interesting comment (2, Interesting)

daviddennis (10926) | more than 7 years ago | (#16363649)

The take-home message seems to be that as these sites get more entrenched in society, they look more like society at large. Myspace has over 100 million users, on paper at least. I doubt that there are 100 million kids within the site's target demographic, so it was inevitable that it get older.

I always thought of it as a site of 20somethings, not teens, though. On the other hand, I know a myspace who was 18 when I first met her, and I thought she looked 26 then. Maybe people just grow faster nowadays ...


"It will be interesting to monitor the shifts in Facebook's demographic composition that will undoubtedly occur as a result of the company's recent decision to open its doors to users of all ages."


Not only that, but Facebook always allowed its visitors to continue using the site after they left college, which would have created an upward age shift no matter what they did. Opening up their population will increase that even more, but it is impossible to tell how much due to the lack of a control.

D

Re:This is an interesting comment (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16363793)

I always thought of it as a site of 20somethings, not teens, though. On the other hand, I know a myspace who was 18 when I first met her, and I thought she looked 26 then. Maybe people just grow faster nowadays ...


She was really 16 and had a penis. Man are you naive.

Re:This is an interesting comment (1)

daviddennis (10926) | more than 7 years ago | (#16364245)

I met her in real life before I saw her on myspace, so I know she was perfectly penis-free.

On the other hand, her personality was a bit cold. Pity since she was a real stunner.

D

Re:This is an interesting comment (1, Interesting)

garcia (6573) | more than 7 years ago | (#16363881)

On the other hand, I know a myspace who was 18 when I first met her, and I thought she looked 26 then.

You mean a "person" right? Myspace isn't 18 years old. Just wanted to clear that confusion up.

As far as differences in "social networking sites" (I hate that term as they rarely do anything of the sort) go, yes, they are all entirely different. I utilize Dodgeball [dodgeball.com] although not for social networking (I'm fairly certain that no one uses it for that as the notification of friends of friends hasn't worked in at least 6 months). I use it to keep track of which venues I've been to and when. I used to post the RSS feed on my website as the content there generally pertains to restaurants and where I've been going to so it was a nice fit (once the RSS feed died when they switched to Google's backend I never bothered to reuse it once fixed).

Myspace and Facebook are pretty much worthless in the sense of "social networking" unless you are talking about being online "friends". Plenty of people want another number but rarely do you meet anyone new that is interested in actually being your friend IRL (unless we are talking about 40 year old men and 15 year old girls).

While the lines of real life and Internet life are blurring these sites are not doing much to fix that. It might not be the sites fault, obviously, as their users are the ones that decide how to use it "properly".

Re:This is an interesting comment (1)

daviddennis (10926) | more than 7 years ago | (#16364335)

Well, that will teach me to write a comment before I'm fully awake! Thanks for the correction, yes, she was a myspace user, not myspace itself.

I've discovered a very strange thing in developing my own social networking site (URL in signature). People want to be seen as your virtual friend without actually talking to you. I had things set up so that a friend request was just another option within an email, and so people would just click "Ask David to be my friend".

Almost immediately, I got a barrage of questions of how friend requests worked, so now it composes the email for you if you don't really want to bother. It was the only change that my users wanted me to make that made me feel bad, because I still think virtual friends should send each other emails, not just friend requests!

Still, I'm trying to build social networking for the person with a brain. A different niche, for sure :-). I hope you'll give it a look.

D

teens and the men who love teens (2, Funny)

theStorminMormon (883615) | more than 7 years ago | (#16363651)

FTA: There is a misconception that social networking is the exclusive domain of teenagers, but this analysis confirms that the appeal of social networking sites is far broader.

Of course it's not just teens. It's also all the creepy older people that need to hang out with teens. And I'm not really talking about the sexual predators, I'm just talking about the 35 year olds with tattoos and piercings clinging desperately to what's left of their diminishing youth.

So in a way, this misconception that social networking is for teens is precisely why you get so many creepy older people there - they want to be with the teens. Ironically, now that we have stories coming out like this, the social respectability of these sites will increase and we might to see some normal adults. So the creepy adults are paving the way for broad general acceptance. Not to mention the kids who get started with social sites early and then just grow up with them.

Does anyone else want to pull their hair out whenever the news media reports on tech with such a "golly gee willickers!" tone?

-stormin

Re:teens love teens (1)

symes (835608) | more than 7 years ago | (#16363781)

Not to mention the kids who get started with social sites early and then just grow up with them.

Now this will be fascinating to watch. Older adopters of social networking sites will most likely have been embedded in real-world social networks first. Kids who use social networking sites will mature into the world with mates scattered across the globe. This brings a whole new dimension to long-term friendship, one which is both mediated by IT and marketable.

Re:teens love teens (1)

theStorminMormon (883615) | more than 7 years ago | (#16364455)

There are other issues as well. For the most part the concept of friendship is pretty unambiguous in meatspace. But a lot of behavior that would be considered sociopathic (e.g. theft of property) is not necessarily sociopathic on the net.

I suppose this may end up being a non-issue as courts have started to recognize digital property as real property with real wealth, but as the EVE scams demonstrate, there are a plenty of people who engage in behavior online without shame or fear of recrimination who would, at the very least, expect much harsher social consequences in real life.

Consider all the trolls, griefers, and flamers out there. What does this sort of behavior mean for people who grow up seeing this as not something new and different, but as much a part of life as people who flick you off in traffic? And, perhaps more interesting, not what are the cross-generational divides that may result, but the cross-cultural divides? As S. Korea, the US and first-world nations barrel into the digital age, how will citizens of these nations interact with people from countries where internet access is still too sporadic and rare to support this kind of social transformation?

I have to admit that standing on what I consider to be the precipice of people who grew up without PCs (my family's first internet-connected PC didn't arrive until I was 16), I'm a little apprehensive of how I will fit in with younger generations. My father (older generation) is pretty much incapable of learning FPS controls, or manipulating a space ship in 3d (ala Descent). I was able to get a grip on the controls, but it was hard for me. My younger brother (11 years younger) was literally flying spaceships through 3d space about as well as I could when he was 3 years old. The creepy thing is that no matter how adept he is at playing video games and taking them for granted he still (at 14) can't really tell the difference between a computer and a monitor. What's life going to look like when these guys are running the show? Is our generation the only one that will really understand computer internals en masse?

-stormin

Re:teens love teens (1)

ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) | more than 7 years ago | (#16364889)

My father (older generation) is pretty much incapable of learning FPS controls, or manipulating a space ship in 3d (ala Descent). I was able to get a grip on the controls, but it was hard for me. My younger brother (11 years younger) was literally flying spaceships through 3d space about as well as I could when he was 3 years old.
Being able to play first person shooter and space/flight sims is neither a neccessary nor sufficient condition for being "comfortable" or "good" with computers....

The creepy thing is that no matter how adept he is at playing video games and taking them for granted he still (at 14) can't really tell the difference between a computer and a monitor.
...as you make clear in your post.

Re:teens love teens (3, Interesting)

theStorminMormon (883615) | more than 7 years ago | (#16365599)

Do you habitually just jump on the end of a post and pretend to make a counterpoint to a figment of your imagination, or you are just making an exception in my case? Contrary to the impression you leave with your quotation marks (watch where you sling those things!) I never argued that FPS/space shooters were either necessary or sufficient for being "'good' or 'comfortable' with computers" (note that what I put in quotes can actually be found in your post*)

My point was simply that generations prior to ours have a hard time grasping computer concepts. I picked, purely for fun, two gaming-related examples. There are plenty others. If you've ever done any support work in your life, you've met the older men and women who want you to explain how to burn a CD and take line-by-line notes. The result? They can now burn a CD, as long as it's only the same type (e.g. data vs. music) using the exact same software on the same computer. Swap up Nero for Roxio or move the shortcuts to the burning software - and they are lost.

The generation following ours, as far as I can tell, has taken to computers like a duck to water, as it were. Not *all* kids, of course, but by and large they figure stuff out. They blog, surf, rip, burn, etc. with some degree of competence. However this competence is only superficial. Ask a lot of these kids anything about how the technology works and you'll get a blank stare. It just works.

So, generationally speaking, it seems as though the generations that were exposed to computers late enough in life to not take them for granted, but early enough in life to adapt may be a unique generation.

But don't let my questions get in the way of you sounding clever by any means.

-stormin

* I don't always use quotation marks to quote people, but the only other use I think is valid is as a literary device when describing someone speaking, and when there's little chance of the quote being misunderstood (as in my reference to "golly gee willikers!" in my first post on this topic).

Re:teens love teens (1)

Jack Action (761544) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368411)

So, generationally speaking, it seems as though the generations that were exposed to computers late enough in life to not take them for granted, but early enough in life to adapt may be a unique generation.

Fascinating point.

The change to a totally digital world is on a par with the Gutenberg revolution. Yet, the authoritative history of the effects of the printing press was not written until the 20th century (Marshall McLuhan -- The Gutenberg Galaxy), when print began to recede with the coming of electronic media.

Maybe one of the unique generation spoken about in the parent will write a masterpiece capturing the nature of our current change?

You can always hope.

Re:teens love teens (1)

cavemanf16 (303184) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369655)

You're not exactly correct about generational differences. I think the thing you are witnessing is the switchover from "how things used to be" (i.e. no computers) to "how all things now are" (i.e. everyone uses computers).

Notice the flip from a no-car society to a 2 cars in every garage society. We take cars for granted, everyone learns to drive, and only some become very knowledgeable and capable mechanics, and only some can really drive well... all the rest pretend to do both, but it's obvious that they're idiots to the knowledgeable and capable drivers and mechanics. (I'd place myself in the "knowledgeable and capable enough" category - i.e. I can troubleshoot some stuff but generally will defer to paying an arm and a leg to someone better than me whenever it gets a little complicated.)

Computer users in this age are much the same. The older generation of people who wouldn't ever "get it" in the first place are the ones who repeatedly infect their computers with spyware and other virus crap, and those few who do get it don't stick out like sore thumbs because their capacity to master their computer puts them entire leagues ahead of the other old people. Meanwhile, you have these kids growing up with computers everywhere who "use" computers everyday, but still couldn't distinguish between a CPU, a video card, and the monitor and the functions of each... to them, those are just parts that go in "the computer."

And what about those kids who are users in almost all aspects of their lives? Well, they grow up to be used car salesmen and Best Buy computer salesmen.

Re:teens love teens (1)

theStorminMormon (883615) | more than 7 years ago | (#16373319)

I'm not sure where you disagree with me on this. I agree that we're witnessing the switchover from "how things used to be" to "how all things are now", but this switchover was not instantaneous. It has taken about a generation. And thus the generation that watched it happen is, in some ways, very unique.

People born in the 50s and 60s, heck all the way into the 70s were too old for the most part to catch on in the digital age. Meanwhile, anyone born in the 90s was too young. By the time they were old enough to start messing with computers, they were everywhere.

So it's those born from, say, the late 70s to the early 90s that grew up without computers, but then embraced them early enough to really get it. I'm just remarking on how quickly that transformation took place, and how few people were around to really be a part of it.

-stormin

Re:teens love teens (1)

cavemanf16 (303184) | more than 7 years ago | (#16376855)

OK, that's a fair comment that there is this unique 10-20 yr group of people (GenX'ers and GenY'ers in popular media) that grep's the whole computer thing in a way that anyone else born before or after us doesn't. (I was born in 1976, btw) I guess I wasn't so much arguing that point as much as the thought that those who grow up with computers (post early 90's babies) will somehow have a very different experience than others. I am just viewing that paradigm as similar to previous technological advances in our society like flight or the automobile.

However, if part of your argument happens to be that our educational system in the U.S. blows chunks and could therefore contribute to a future generation knowing basically nothing about the actual operations of computers, then yes, I can agree with that. Which leads us to either welcome our future Chinese overlords, or to run around acting like idiots in our future oversized jail cell: the U.S.A. as the rest of the world passes us by. :-P

Re:teens love teens (1)

Bloke down the pub (861787) | more than 7 years ago | (#16365069)

My father (older generation) is pretty much incapable of learning FPS controls, or manipulating a space ship in 3d (ala Descent).
Oh man, he's practically soylent green already.

Re:teens love teens (1)

mackyrae (999347) | more than 7 years ago | (#16365469)

The creepy thing is that no matter how adept he is at playing video games and taking them for granted he still (at 14) can't really tell the difference between a computer and a monitor. What's life going to look like when these guys are running the show? Is our generation the only one that will really understand computer internals en masse?
Yes, unless we start training the kiddies. My boyfriend taught his 10-year old sister to mod (I assume he means video games, but he might mean computers), DOS, and emulation. He was surprised when I said I don't know DOS. Apparently he was running -just- DOS for 2 years. I say he keeps at it. Help her make a web site (he does web design) with HTML and CSS instead of a WYSIWYG. I never taught my younger siblings anything about computers. They're close to my age and relied on me to fix it. Now, I'm forcing them to learn it because I'm not there to fix their computers for them. I would like to teach my youngest cousins to use computers really well (rather than mediocrely).

Re:teens love teens (1)

theStorminMormon (883615) | more than 7 years ago | (#16365723)

Yes, unless we start training the kiddies.

Excellent point. I suppose when I have kiddies (first one arrives in about 8 weeks!) I'll take that route. Not right away, of course. First things first, and pooping is more important than gaming (not to mention walking and speaking).

The trouble is that I think there probably won't be enough techies out there teaching the kiddies the ancient and revered art of actually knowing what happens inside your computer. That's not how people in my generation learned computers. We learned because we wanted to play games and DOS required at least a little fiddling. And once you started fiddling, you started wanting to know more.

But every since WinXP gamers don't really need to know much at all to game. They just point and click and the game runs (or they buy a new computer if it doesn't). So there's no hook from gaming to learning. The result? A whole generation of WoW addicts who couldn't go 1 day without touching a keyboard, but who haven't the faintest idea what's happening inside those magic boxes.

I'm glad your boyfriend is mentoring his sister. I'm actually trying to teach my little brother what's up (my sisters are actually pretty competent, if not hackers) but it's not that easy when I don't see him that often.

And it's safe to say my kids will pick it up. Their father is a decent math major and their mother is an excellent math/comp sci dual major - but what about all those people out there who aren't hard core, but who know how to do basic trouble shooting and then go into other fields? Tons of people my age learned the basics of computing, then went into non-computing fields. Will they really be interested enough to teach their kids? I doubt it.

-stormin

Re:teens love teens (1)

mackyrae (999347) | more than 7 years ago | (#16367405)

I figure if I have kids, "puzzle time" will really be "helping mommy put in more ram" or something like that. Give them some old hardware that should really just be junked, and let them assemble it and disassemble it. I've always been into the "ooo how's that work...? *take apart, break, fix, put back together*" thing. I think kids like to do that kind of stuff too. Techies will be the only ones having 5-year-olds speaking sentences that are half-acronym and make no sense to other kids.

I couldn't catch my siblings young enough. When I got interested (read: became expected to act as FTS), I didn't know enough to teach them. Now that I do, they're too old to mold.

Re:teens love teens (1)

theStorminMormon (883615) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368135)

Hahahaha... I like the idea of puzzle time. My wife wants to home school, so I imagine she'll be doing something similar. She really likes math more than computers, however, so I imagine puzzle time is going to be algebra starting when they're about 5. She's still really angry about not being allowed into advanced math classes when she was younger because she was a girl (I guess some teachers are still stupid) so if our kids are anything like her, they really will be doing algebra at that point.

I guess that means that it's my duty to make sure they also know how to install RAM, identify the components of a computer, etc. I'll do my best to make sure the first computer they get to mess with is also the first computer they build.

-stormin

hight tech but not technical == squib (1)

teh_chrizzle (963897) | more than 7 years ago | (#16370275)

So there's no hook from gaming to learning. The result? A whole generation of WoW addicts who couldn't go 1 day without touching a keyboard, but who haven't the faintest idea what's happening inside those magic boxes.

that's is my wife in a nutshell. she was in the asheron's call beta and was one of the only female monarchs in the game. she was even interviewed by time magazine for an article on female MMORPG'ers. i opened her dell to upgrade the harddrive and she was nervous that i would break something. when i asked her if her 1000hour sims game was backed up (just in case) she was like "i have no idea what you are talking about".

she is not just an avid gamer, but she uses the internet for pretty much everything. she can produce an itinerary and coupons for just about any activity that we can come up with. she can text way faster than i can and we IM all day long while we are at work... yet she has very little knowlege of how computers, phones, websites, or networks operate. she represents this new phylum of geek that is steeped in geek culture, without actually posessing true geek powers.

in the harry potter books these types are known as "squibs"... people who grew up in the wizarding world, yet have no innate wizarding powers.

Re:hight tech but not technical == squib (1)

theStorminMormon (883615) | more than 7 years ago | (#16373353)

That's a brilliant metaphor and I think I will steal and use it myself.

I'll try to give you credit if I get famous with it! ;-)

-stormin

Re:teens and the men who love teens (1)

ectal (949842) | more than 7 years ago | (#16366193)

35 is "older"?

Come on! 35 is the new 25.

At least, that's what I tell all them teenagers on myspace.

Re:teens and the men who love teens (1)

theStorminMormon (883615) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368697)

35 is only "older" when it's 35-trying-to-look-like-15.

-stormin

Re:teens and the men who love teens (1)

ectal (949842) | more than 7 years ago | (#16368837)

Ha! That's a good point!

Re:teens and the men who love teens (1)

theStorminMormon (883615) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369165)

My wife and I are about to have our first child so I'm in no mood to start saying older people aren't young! I'm 25 now, but I'll be 35 soon enough, and 45 after that. So I'm rather heavily biased not to consider those ages "old".

I can remember being 15. Sometimes it seems like forever ago, but other times I feel very little time has passed at all.

-stormin

Totally O/T but what the hell (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16368971)

Of course it's not just teens. It's also all the creepy older people that need to hang out with teens. And I'm not really talking about the sexual predators, I'm just talking about the 35 year olds with tattoos and piercings clinging desperately to what's left of their diminishing youth. So in a way, this misconception that social networking is for teens is precisely why you get so many creepy older people there - they want to be with the teens...

Speaking of misconceptions...

My girlfriend of 5 years has a nose ring, and is heavily tattooed, she's also 5'10" and has long, natural, fiery red hair, so people do "notice" her.

She got her nose ring when she was 13, she's now 49, and I can tell you that she isn't clinging desperately to what's left of her diminishing youth.

Like myself, she never lost it, so nothing to "cling to", we are cultural "outsiders" by the mere fact that we live our lives with a passion unknown to most people, and we don't care what you, or anybody else "thinks", because you've put yourself in a tidy little box, or more aptly, a "cage".

Search for "Domestic Primate" sometime, and see yourself in the mirror.

Next up (1, Funny)

wootest (694923) | more than 7 years ago | (#16363691)

Next up: Tautologies are tautologies!

Re:Next up (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16363799)

I'm going to have to see the logical proof on that one to believe it.

Study must be flawed (1)

GGardner (97375) | more than 7 years ago | (#16363725)

I just can't believe that 40% of MySpace visitors are 35 years old or older, as the original article states. I'm not sure how they are measuring this, but there's all kinds of possible errors in these methods.

Re:Study must be flawed (1)

Kangburra (911213) | more than 7 years ago | (#16363763)

There could be errors, but that age group is as tech savvy as any other so why not?

Re:Study must be flawed (1)

Lemmy Caution (8378) | more than 7 years ago | (#16366151)

There's a left-over assumption of a generation tech-divide that is becoming less and less meaningful. I'm probably from the first generation that really had that divide - home computing really came into its own as I was a child, and I picked up things pretty organically. Home computing at that time meant programming, too: over-the-counter software was limited, interfaces were command-line, etc.

I'm beginning to think of the 10-year window that followed my childhood as a "hump" - after seeing children (even some of the undergraduates at the Uni. where I am a researcher) treat computers as consumer products and "black boxes". The technology behind them has become too opaque - they are stuck on the other side of the interface. A computer is much closer to television now than it was 15 years ago.

So, the 30-to-40 set may actually be more technologically sophisticated than the sub-30 set.

Re:Study must be flawed (1)

GGardner (97375) | more than 7 years ago | (#16366873)

So, the 30-to-40 set may actually be more technologically sophisticated than the sub-30 set.

Which is why I'd be surprised to seem the using MySpace.

Re:Study must be flawed (1)

Firedog (230345) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369627)

I'm part of the 30-to-40 set you speak of. I started out with the Apple II and went from there.

I think this evolution is similar to what happened with cars. 30 or 40 years ago, people commonly maintained their own cars - partly because the machines were simpler, and partly out of necessity. As a result, people had a much better understanding of what was under the hood than they do today. Nowadays, even independent mechanics can't do much more than minor maintenance without investing tens of thousands of dollars in specialized equipment.

Those who like to tinker with cars still can, usually with older models. The rest of us don't even need to know how to change the oil, although we might still be really good drivers.

And there will always be kids who want to tinker with computers. Fortunately, there are lots of cool things out there to play with. When I was growing up, you couldn't just download Eclipse...

Re:Study must be flawed (1)

Kangburra (911213) | more than 7 years ago | (#16375171)

although we might still be really good drivers.


I think a lot of older drivers would say that to be a good driver means knowing how to change the oil/brake pads etc. Lest you become a steering wheel attendant.

Re:Study must be flawed (5, Funny)

digitalhermit (113459) | more than 7 years ago | (#16364331)

Easy -- They're all old guys trying to pick up young girls. My name is Chinese, but most American's think it's female. In fact, they think of this lithe ice skater. The reality is that I'm an overweight, balding, gap-toothed, Asian male nerd... but I get so many requests from 45+ year old guys pretending to be 18 and feigning interest in stuff I listed as my pastimes. E.g., Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Hello Kitty merchandise (my daughter loves it), sushi (tons of requests to hang out for sushi and wine, lots of wine). I have emails from dozens of dudes telling me they like walking on the beach and conversations in coffee bars. I finally relate to those millions of women who get physically ill when some dude tries some pathetic line...

(Hmm.. Any females reading this please note how sensitive I am from the above post. If you want to get together to chat, let me know).

Re:Study must be flawed (1)

xIcemanx (741672) | more than 7 years ago | (#16365541)

Hey Kwan...I uh, really enjoy sushi too. Why don't we hang out sometime and have some sushi and...wine? I like walking on the beach talking about Buffy the Vampire Slayer, do you?

How an old guy usually interacts with teen girls (1)

BenEnglishAtHome (449670) | more than 7 years ago | (#16379405)

Y'know, being a pudgy white nerd in my mid-40s who actually does think that the Buffyverse was the greatest televised artistic creation in history makes for some weird moments. A while back, I injured a knee and took my physical therapy at a place that does a booming business in injured little girls, mostly teen cheerleaders and soccer players. So here I am, riding the stationary bike, doing my stretches, and constantly surrounded by drama queen, rap-talkin' little whiners. No amount of cute visuals could make up for the throbbing headache I left with every day.

So one day, in conversation with my trainer, I said something. I don't even remember what it was - some quote from Buffy, or was it a Puffy AmiYumi reference? - and three or four girls around me just froze. They stared. They backed up and walked away and whispered. Obviously, some fat old slob that knew that stuff must have hobbies that make the skin crawl. Frankly, I was a little put off by the whole "let's treat this guy like radioactive anthrax" vibe that lasted the rest of the day.

Oh, well. I should find something to take my mind off such things. I'm gonna go check my Tivo and see if there's an episode of Hanna Montana I can watch.

Well, duh (5, Funny)

metamatic (202216) | more than 7 years ago | (#16363825)

MySpace: Crappy bands and empty-headed teenage girls.

LiveJournal: Trolls, drama queens and emo girls who are into cutting.

Orkut: Brazilians and nobody else.

Yahoo / Yahoo 360: Bored teenagers and creepy swingers.

Friendster: Old people who are so behind the curve they think Windows is a pretty neat OS. The kind of people who call their web browser "the Internet" and use MSN Messenger.

Re:Well, duh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16364477)

LiveJournal: Trolls, drama queens and emo girls who are into cutting.

And jwz [livejournal.com]

Re:Well, duh (1)

kkiller (945601) | more than 7 years ago | (#16365533)

The kind of people who call their web browser "the Internet" and use MSN Messenger.

By that reckoning Friendster is populated by 20-something Brits, most of whom who have contact with the net in the last six years have an MSN messenger addy. I don't know about the US, but MSN has always been huge here.

Re:Well, duh (1)

metamatic (202216) | more than 7 years ago | (#16367149)

I'm English, I only know one person who uses MSN, and she's American. I stand by my characterization...

Re:Well, duh (1)

kkiller (945601) | more than 7 years ago | (#16370591)

I'm English and the majority of my friends, and most of my family, have MSN buddy names. But yes, friendster sucks :D

Re:Well, duh (1)

Chapium (550445) | more than 7 years ago | (#16367987)

From what I've seen, its mainly been AIM and yahoo here. MSN seems to be gaining ground with its "Live" release.

Re:Well, duh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16368377)

You're forgetting an essential item: /.: pale nerds living in their parents' basement.

Language stratification (1)

21mhz (443080) | more than 7 years ago | (#16369867)

Orkut: Brazilians and nobody else.

That's interesting. To me, LiveJournal is Russians and little else. The share of Russians there is disproportionally large [livejournal.com]. There is such a pulling effect when just about everyone interesting and speaking the language posts in LiveJournal. My friend list has mag editors, media pundits and prominent public figures. As a result, LJ is the place to come for all the latest buzz in Russian.

Of course they are different (1)

tontammer (988352) | more than 7 years ago | (#16363839)

How else do you think the new ones will compete with the older and more popular ones?
But obvoiusly most of them do not cut it. I think stumbleupon and grupus are two good ideas I have seen in recent times.

sorry for the anonymous posting. in a library right now.

New Market (3, Interesting)

Wiarumas (919682) | more than 7 years ago | (#16363869)

Hmmm.. I see nobody has tapped the 1-12 market yet. It's a potential gold mine! They are the social networkers of the future afterall!

Re:New Market (1)

mgblst (80109) | more than 7 years ago | (#16364547)

My 9 year old neice loves posting gaudy colourful pictures that sparkle on her 5 different sites. Don't worry, the 9-year olds onwards are covered.

Bizarre (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16363957)

This is like saying that different cafes attract different kinds of people

A known problem. (2, Insightful)

astellar (675749) | more than 7 years ago | (#16364725)

Every social network trying to solve one known problem - how to waste time effectively [google.com] and efficiently. Some of them has a complite success.

Re:A known problem. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16371403)

Sort of like an optimised null loop?

FriSt st0p (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16367239)

the political mees Correct network

MySpace attracts older people? (1)

DoubleMike (942739) | more than 7 years ago | (#16379805)

I'm willing to bet that 5% of MySpace users are exactly "99" years old. I know from experience that almost every MySpace user under the age of 16 lies about their age on their myspace profile. I don't think this study can accurately measure a statistic that's guaranteed to be skewed by underage liars.
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