Global Youth: Teen blogger in Syria, accused of spying, sentenced to 5 years in prison

A Syrian court has sentenced a teenage blogger to five years in prison on charges of spying for a foreign country. Tal al-Mallouhi was 17 when she was arrested in 2009 and has been held by authorites for the past two years.

Human rights groups said her long jail term was another sign of an intensifying crackdown on opposition in Syria, in the wake of the Tunisian and Egyptian revolutions.

Al-Mallouhi had written articles on her blog saying she yearned to play a role in shaping the future of Syria, which has been under the control of the Baath Party for the last 50 years. She had also asked Barack Obama, the US president, to do more to support the Palestinian cause.

It was not clear whether her arrest was connected to the blog, but a security court charged her several months ago with "revealing information that should remain hushed to a foreign country".

Syria's Higher State Security Court issued Monday's sentence at the end of a trial held behind closed doors, an official close to the court told the Associated Press news agency.

via english.aljazeera.net

Related: Young Egyptians want American youth to share in their dramatic moment of liberation (via MTV ACT)


Global Youth: Is That Egyptian Facebook Sign for Real?

via techpresident.com

Floating around the Internet of late has been the photo above of what looks to be an Egyptian man amidst the anti-Mubarak protests in Cairo's Tahrir Square holding up what appears to be a pro-Facebook sign.

A sign like that lends a little weight to the idea that, whatever tactical role that social technologies might have played in the Egyptian uprising, they've captured the hearts and minds of Egyptians. Alec Ross, the U.S. State Department's senior advisor on innovation, found vindication in the photo. "14:58 ... 14:59 ...,"  tweeted Ross this morning. "Cyberskeptics, your 15 minutes are up."

Powerful stuff, perhaps. But with the sheer volume of photos, tweets, blog posts and more we're seeing about Egypt, provenience is often an afterthought. And perhaps I'm the only one who had the though, but that block lettering looks awfully well done.

So to, um, just put on our skeptical pants for a moment, let's ask, is the Facebook-in-Egypt sign for real? Or is this a joke on Malcolm Gladwell? It's the real deal, or at least all signs point in that direction.

As to what the sign itself actually reads, the Arabic-trained  Aaron Banks translates it as, "Thank you...youth [of] Egypt," then the Facebook reference, and then "Steadfast we will not go."


Weekly Wrap: China, Social Media & Chinese Youth Trends

image from a4.att.hudong.com I've been doing some research on Chinese youth culture and their use of technology, mobile phones & social networking for a book chapter I'm working on and thought I'd share some of my research.

The following sites and articles have provided me with a pretty good insight into what it means to be a Chinese Millennial.

China's Top 4 Social Networks: There is no single dominant network, no Facebook for all of China. The actual Facebook.com is blocked by government censors (Chinese sites all obediently and quickly remove “objectionable” content). No single social network will conquer the China market in the immediate future, least of all a foreign one. [China Social Games]

Digital Confucius Introduces Chinese Students to Liberal Arts at Yale and Beyond: Hundreds of thousands of young Chinese are joining a new craze: auditing American university courses available online. Of most interest: topics like happiness and justice. [CS Monitor]

China's New Culture of Cool: China’s 1.3 billion citizens—particularly the 640 million who are under age 30—are becoming a world force. However, China is not a monolithic culture.

Though deeply rooted in native traditions, its contemporary marketplace is eclectic, combining regional styles with elements borrowed from foreign cultures.

And, it is evolving at a remarkable pace. To succeed in this dynamic emerging market, smart businesses need to understand its driving influences—especially its urban youth. [Cheskin Added Value]

Mobile Youth Trends | China 2010: The Mobile Youth Trends China 2010 Report provides marketing and product managers an overview of both the quantitative and qualitative state of play with young mobile customers (aged 5-29). [MobileYouth]

China Internet Status Report 2010: The latest report on China Internet is ready, which is based on CNNIC data. [China Internet Watch]

China Internet Network Information Center: China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC), the state network information center of China, was founded as a non-profit organization on Jun. 3rd 1997.

Enovate: In short, we’re a Shanghai-based insights and design agency. We combine on-the-ground research and an experienced strategy team, to arrive at innovative solutions to China’s youth market. We work with a wide range of client to build meaningful relationships with Chinese youth.

A Look at China's 240 million mobile youth: China’s legion of 240 million mobile owners under 30 yrs old has a significant bearing on the shape of the mobile phone industry and we’re fortunate to have Jesse Hu in the region to do our on-the-street research for us down in Shenzhen city. [Mobile Youth]

Infographic: Social Media Equivalents in China

Image Credit: Enovate


Trend Watch: China's 'Angry Youth' Movement

image from www.newyorker.com The transcript of Kai-Fu Lee's keynote on China's 'Angry Youth' at The Brookings Institution is a fascinating read full of insight and observations of Chinese youth made by someone with the experience and knowledge to do so.

Dr. Lee was the founder of China-based Microsoft Research Asia and was the founding president of Google China. Kai-Fu Lee, is a household name in China, has written three best selling books and all them aim to help people understand, educate or mentor China's young people.

According to Dr. Lee China’s "angry youth," or fenqing, present a challenging phenomenon to both China and the outside world. These young men and women often use the Internet and other channels of political discourse to publicly express their critical views.

Earlier this year Accenture released a report that found young Chinese (14-27 years old) spend an average of 34 hours each week using real-time communications and social media/networking tools. At 34 hours a week, that number is almost triple the average of the other 12 countries profiled in the report.

So who exactly are China's "angry youth?" According to Kai-Fu Lee:

"So when we talk about angry youth, I think we're talking about post-80's, people born after 1980, that they had access to the internet, and that they often use it to vent their frustrations and that frustration often comes from either their patriotism or their desire to seek that which is righteous, fair, true and transparent.

They care about social issues. They're concerned and they feel that they need to be outspoken to have their voices heard, and they often use the internet to gain knowledge and to have their voice heard.

...when we talk about angry youth, I really don't want to think about this as a very negative term because I think if we think deeply about what angry youth are about, this is people who are young people who have access to information, who have a sense of social repsonsiblity, who have their sense of right and wrong--they are not always right--but they have a sense of right and wrong.

Their hyper-nationalistic and often anti-Western sentiments, which first emerged in the late 1990s and are widely disseminated today, stand in sharp contrast to a generation of Chinese youth just 20 years ago.

What gives rise to the frustrations of China’s "angry youth?" How representative of China’s youth are fenqing? What implications does their existence have for the country’s political trajectory? How will the growing influence of China’s "angry youth" impact China’s foreign policy in years to come?

This keynote aims to both answer these questions as well as educate Westerners on the emerging trends among Chinese youth.

China's 'Angry Youth' Movement

 

Related: Barking Robot@Tumblr > China's Top Social Networks


Global ‘Digital Life’ research project reveals major changes in online behavior

Social.media.bandwagon The largest ever global research project into people’s online activities and behaviour – Digital Life – was launched earlier this week by TNS, the world’s biggest custom research company.

Covering nearly 90 per cent of the world’s online population through 50,000 interviews with consumers in 46 countries, the study reveals major changes in the world’s online behaviour.

Among the key findings of the study are:

  • Globally, people who have on-line access have digital sources as their number one media channel. 61% of online users use the internet daily against 54% for TV, 36% for Radio and 32% for Newspapers.
  • Online consumers in rapid growth markets have overtaken mature markets in terms of engaging with digital activities. When looking at behaviour online, rapid growth markets such as Egypt (56%) and China (54%) have much higher levels of digital engagement than mature markets such as Japan (20%), Denmark (25%) or Finland (26%). This is despite mature markets usually having a more advanced internet infrastructure.
  • Activities such as blogging and social networking are gaining momentum at huge speed in rapid growth markets. The research shows four out of five online users in China (88%) and over half of those in Brazil (51%) have written their own blog or forum entry, compared to only 32% in the US.
  • The Internet has also become the default option for photo sharing among online users in rapid growth markets, particularly in Asia. The number of online consumers who have ever uploaded photos to social networks or photo sharing sites is 92% in Thailand, 88% in Malaysia and 87% in Vietnam, whilst developed markets are more conservative. Less than a third of online consumers in Japan (28%) and under half of those in Germany (48%) have uploaded photos to such sites.

TNS Digital Life: Drivers of Online Behaviour

  • Growth in social networking has been fuelled by the transition from PC to mobile. Mobile users spend on average 3.1 hours per week on social networking sites compared to just 2.2 hours on email. The drive to mobile is driven by the increased need for instant gratification and the ability of social networks to offer multiple messaging formats, including the instant message or update function.
  • The digital landscape will change in the future. Research shows that consumers expect their use of social networking on mobiles to increase more than use through PC. In the US, for example, a quarter (26%) of online consumers expect their use of social networking on a PC to increase in the next 12 months compared to over a third (36%) who will be looking to their mobile to increase usage. In Australia the figures are 26% and 44% respectively, and in Sweden they are 28% and 53%.

TNS Digital Life: The North American Digital Landscape  

  • Online consumers are spending more time on social networking sites such as Facebook. In rapid growth markets such as Latin America, the Middle East and China, the average time spent, per week, on social networking is 5.2 hours compared to only 4 hours on email.
  • Online consumers in mature markets remain more reliant on email, spending 5.1 hours checking their inboxes compared to just 3.8 hours on social networking. The heaviest users of social networking are in Malaysia (9 hours per week), Russia (8.1 hours per week) and Turkey (7.7 hours per week).
  • When it comes to who has more friends, online consumers in Malaysia tops the list with an average of 233 friends in their social network, closely followed by Brazilians with 231. The least social are the Japanese with just 29 friends and Tanzanians have, on average, 38 in their circle of friends. Surprisingly, Chinese consumers only have an average of 68 friends in their networks despite being heavy users of social networking sites, indicating a culture that embraces fewer but closer friendships.

Trend Watch: Social Media in the UK 2010 [Video]

 

This is a little video produced by Ireland-based PR firm Simply Zesty that explores the state of social media in the UK.

The video includes some interesting social media stats and other demographic information, including: 85% percent of the UK population is online and they spend over 6 hours on social media sites every month, nearly 60% of them read blogs and 64% have their own profile on a social network.


Infographic: Professors’ Use of Technology in Teaching

image from chronicle.com
The Faculty Survey of Student Engagement surveyed approximately 4,600 faculty members at 50 U.S. colleges and universities in the spring of 2009 to see how they are using new media and social technology in their classroom.

Based on these findings, it doesn't seem like too many professors' are integrating technology into their classroom. What do you think? Do these results surprise you?

Thanks to Dale for the heads up!

Related: In Google We Trust: Young Adults' Evaluation of Web Content


2010 Social Media Matters Report: Majority of Top Media Destinations Are Social

Social.montage According to research conducted by BlogHer and iVillage2010 Social Media Matters Study,” co-sponsored by The Nielsen Company and Ketchum, social sites are now a frequent destination for nearly three-quarters of Internet users.

Social Media Matters 2010

Respondents’ top daily media activities were social as well. Watching television is still on top, but Facebook was the next most common media destination visited every day.

The study found similar rates of usage among men and women, and pegged the percentage of weekly social media users at 73% of the online population.

via www.emarketer.com

Here are some of the other key findings in the 2010 Social Media Matters Study:

  • Blogs trail only search engines as the preferred media source for product-purchasing information for BlogHer users.
  • Among BlogHer users, 96 percent read blogs weekly or more often.
  • BlogHer users are more active than average women across the board on blogs, Facebook, and Twitter.
  • As for iVillage users, message boards and forums were second only to conversations with friends and family as the preferred source of product-purchasing information.
  • 73 percent of respondents from the iVillage community said they share topics on message boards and forums that they would not share on social networks. Of those, relationships (61 percent), health (45 percent), and work-related issues (39 percent) were the top topics they would not share on social networks.
  • 31% higher than the total online population for Gen X generation
  • 3.6 percent of iVillage community members post on message boards or forums every day.

Related: Millennials, Men Watch Most Online TV


Weekly Wrap: Oprah's Mobile Apps, Facebook Open Graph 101, Mobile Gaming Soars, Foursquare Marketing, Teen Texting Stats, Youth Media iPad Apps & More!

Barking.robot.iconOprah Launches Oprah Mobile Apps: The application, available for the iPhone, BlackBerry, Palm Pre and Google Android platforms, offers video clips and previews from Winfrey's talk show, ticket alerts, weekly polls, and articles and photos from Oprah.com, The Oprah Magazine and Oprah Radio.

I have no doubt that Oprah's legion of smartphone carrying fans will make this app a hit! [Venture Beat]

Publishers Guide to Facebook Open Graph: Whether we like it (pun intended) or not, we have to understand what this move means. It impacts users, publishers, competitors and, of course, Facebook itself. In this post, we summarize what Facebook announced and ponder the impact this will have on everyone. Related: Facebook Social Plugins [RWW] [Facebook Developers]

Youth Media iPad Apps to Know: With more and more magazine, publishing and TV execs exploring the potential of creating interactive, social apps for the iPad, we thought we'd point to a few of those getting an early start for our latest Ypulse Toolbox. Related: 5 amazing iPad e-books for kids  [Ypulse] [CNET]

Mobile Gaming Soars on Smartphones: Mobile gaming is more than ever a tale of two devices: feature phones and smartphones. The U.S. population playing games on regular mobile phones fell by 35% last year to 29.5 million, while the number of smartphone gamers shot up 60% to 21.4 million, according to a new comScore report. [MediaPost]

7 Quick Steps to Foursquare Marketing: Marketing using Foursquare is beneficial because although a small user base, they are loyal.  It also takes up almost no time, so the ROI can be high. Foursquare marketing is most appropriate for brick and mortar businesses (people physically walk into your store to make purchases), but anyone can be taking advantage of Foursquare. [Real Time Marketer]

Millennials Want Social Sites to Delete User Data: Debunking the oft-repeated assertion that young people don't care about privacy, new research shows that Web users between the ages of 18 and 24 are highly protective of certain information about themselves. [Online Media Daily]

Mom’s Guide to Those Facebook Changes: What do these changes mean? And what should you do if you don’t like the prospect of automatically sharing your activity with everyone you know on Facebook? Related: Facebook Safety Resources for Parents, Teachers & Teens [GigOm] [Barking Robot]

Teen Texting Stats: Anne Collier, author of the must read NetFamilyNews blog and co-founder of ConnectSafely, has a great analysis of the Pew Internet report on teen texting. [NetFamilyNews]


Weekly Wrap: Foursquare Nabs MTV & VH1, Linguist Urges Kids to Embrace Twitter, Saving the Google Students, COPPA & Youth Marketing, Free iPad eBooks & More!

Barking.robot.iconSix Reasons to be Skeptical of the 'Digital Natives' Discourse: Almost all of the claims of the net gen discourse are in popular media and if they are based on research, it is proprietary and full methodological details are not provided. All of the sound research that refutes the claims is published in scholarly journals and has been subject to peer review. [Net Gen Skeptic]

Saving the Google Students: For the Google generation, closing school libraries could be disastrous. Not teaching kids how to sift through sources is like sending them into the world without knowing how to read. [LA Times]

Weekly Wrap, Foursquare Edition: Meet Gatsby, Fresh off the heels of hooking up with Bravo TV and Harvard Foursquare signs a similar deal with MTV & VH1, Microsoft adds Foursquare data to Bing Maps & a really cool visualization of Foursquare check-ins at SXSW. [Iconoculture] [Mobile Entertainment News] [Mashable] [TechCrunch] [SimpleGeo]

10 Reasons Students Are Tuning Teachers Out: You’re teaching to a generation of students that can access more information more quickly than any other generation. Don’t tell students that you don’t want to figure out how to use the internet or that you don’t answer email. You’re putting yourself into a category you don’t want to be in. [GYJoe]

US Census Bureau Adds Mapping App to Facebook: In an effort to reach out to young people, the U.S. Census Bureau is launching a huge nationwide campaign incorporating social media, broadcast media and print to encourage people to fill out their census forms this year. [Inside Facebook]

Ypulse Interview| Jamie Tworkowski: Jamie is the founder of To Write Love on Her Arms, a non-profit movement dedicated to presenting hope and finding help for people struggling with addiction, depression, self-injury and suicide. Related: MTV Poll: Generation Stress [Ypulse]

Preparing Your Content for iPad: Platform-specific considerations and UX Guidelines for web content in Safari on iPhone OS devices, with specific information for iPad. Also, iPad to Offer 30,000 free eBooks at launch. [Safari Technical Notes] [Apple Blog] [UX Magazine]

Marketing to Kids | A Time for Playing by the Rules:Whether it’s Quiksilver, Monster Energy Drinks or ESPN X Games, the look and feel of the typical action sports-related website is young, edgy, authentic. Action sports marketers need to be aware, however, of the panoply of laws that regulate marketing to kids, including the federal Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). [GroupY]

Quote O' The Week: “I hate being thought of as a product. I am not a doll, and people want to treat me that way. I’m older now. I have an opinion. I have my own taste.” - Miley Cyrus on why being a Disney pop princess is so difficult. [Gossip Girl] [Barking Robot]

Blogging, academia, and the new public intellectual: John Holbo admits he and his fellow pioneers have lost the “revolutionary fervor” of blogging’s early days. “I’m fortunate to be at the top of the food chain, to have these bully pulpits where I can stand up and know thousands of people will hear me,” he says. “But we all thought blogging was going to transform academic life, and that didn’t really happen. [Cal Alumni Association]

Linguist Urges Kids to Embrace Twitter: Language is forever changing -- and forms such as tweets and text messages are no less valid than any textbook version, says the linguist David Crystal, whose latest book encourages children to engage with the possibilities of their lingua franca. [The Independent]

More People Are Watching TV While Surfing the Web: This is some decent news for the TV industry, since the fear is that Internet time is eating into boob tube viewing. Overall, TV viewing is up 1%, year over year, according to the report.  [Business Insider]

Why Apple’s iPad Can’t Succeed in Schools (Yet): You see, tablets-as-books is a great idea until the battery dies, and then the student has no textbook and no computer. She will have to plug-in to a power outlet if she wants either of those things back. Related: A Kindle in Every Backpack [The Apple Blog] [Barking Robot]


Video: Teens Share How They Consume Digital Media & TV


Generation M2: Media in the Lives of 8- to 18-Year-Olds is the third in a series of large-scale, nationally representative surveys by the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) about young people's media use.

It includes data from all three waves of the study (1999, 2004, and 2009), and is among the largest and most comprehensive publicly available sources of information about media use among American youth.

This video explores the powerful force that media can be in the lives of teens and tweens. The three young people who are profiled explain what types of media they use—such as smart phones, computers, TV, video games—how much time they spend with media and what impact it has on their lives.

Related: Daily Entertainment Media Use Among Teens Up Dramatically From 5 Years Ago 


Demographics of Teen Content Creators

The information in this presentation examines how teens create and communicate, both in school and in their personal lives.

These slides were shown at the public forum The Power of Youth Voice: What Kids Learn When They Create With Digital Media, a public forum presented by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the National Writing Project, and the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation, on November 18, 2009.