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Understanding the Digital and Non-digital Participation by the Gaming Youth

Abstract : It is important for the inclusiveness of society that the youth actively participate in its development. Even though the means of digital participation have advanced in the past decade, there is still lack of understanding of digital participation of the youth. In this paper, we present a study on how youth aged 16–25 years perceive social and societal participation and more specifically, how youth currently participate in non-digitally and digitally. We conducted a mixed method study in a large gaming event in Finland using a questionnaire (N = 277) and face-to-face interviews (N = 25). The findings reveal that the gaming youth consider digital participation to include discussions in different social media services or web discussion forums. Creating digital content (e.g. videos) and answering surveys were also emphasized. Perceived advantages to participate digitally include the freedom regarding location and time, ease and efficiency in sharing information, and inexpensiveness. Central disadvantages include lack of commitment, anonymity, misinformation and cheating. We also found that frequently playing gamers are more likely to participate online in social activities than those who play occasionally. Youth who reported that they play strategy games were more active in civic participation than those who do not play strategy games. We discuss the implications of our findings to the design of tools for digital participation.
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Iikka Pietilä, Jari Varsaluoma, Kaisa Väänänen. Understanding the Digital and Non-digital Participation by the Gaming Youth. 17th IFIP Conference on Human-Computer Interaction (INTERACT), Sep 2019, Paphos, Cyprus. pp.453-471, ⟨10.1007/978-3-030-29384-0_28⟩. ⟨hal-02544631⟩

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