New tools, old voices: Text messaging by adult cell phone users
Holly Sevier, University of Hawai'i at Manoa, United States
University of Hawai'i at Manoa . Awarded
Text messaging use has exploded in the last decade, both in terms of volume and popularity, but the youth-centric approach of existing research has left adult texting use largely out of the picture. This study seeks to correct that gap by exploring the use of text messaging by adults aged 45 and older, asking why and how they text, and how the use of text messaging affects their social worlds. Relying on a number of individual interviews and small-group focused interviews, results found that study participants adopted texting primarily for the temporal efficiency inherent in the mode, but also that they tended to text asynchronously. Texting conferred a number of positive social functions on study participants such as increasing the frequency of inter- and intragenerational communications, facilitating feelings of community, and effecting greater control over mobile communications since texting enabled study participants to avoid the ‘trap’ of protracted voice calls.
Sevier, H. New tools, old voices: Text messaging by adult cell phone users. Master's thesis, University of Hawai'i at Manoa.
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