How we live now: "I don't think there's such a thing as being offline"

Victoria Carrington

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)
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Distinctions, real and conceptual, in being ‘online’ or ‘offline’ have featured heavily in the ways educational researchers have understood and approached research into the lives and practices of young people, regardless of the ways in which the ‘how we live nows’ of these young people may be rapidly changing around both them and us. This focus matched our understandings and experience of the ways in which we, and our research participants, engaged with the emergent digital culture. In particular, we differentiated between being ‘online’ and being ‘offline’ as ways of building an understanding of the repertoires of practice and skill being developed by the young using these technologies and the worlds opened up by them. Even as we argued that bridges must be built between ‘on’ and ‘off’ and that ‘cyberspace’ should not be constructed as a space or “world apart” (Leander & Kim 2003, p. 271) our research has reflected a set of metaphors about the internet (Markham 2003) and the perceptions and practices that follow. However, metaphors and the conceptual frameworks they draw from and reinforce shift over time, as do the technologies at their core. This paper sets out to explore in messy and potentially conflicting ways how contemporary young people, rather than researchers, understand and experience ‘the internet’ and ‘online-offline’ alongside their engagement with their smart phones Keywords: smart phones, metaphors, internet, online, offline, literacies, postphenomenology
Original languageEnglish
Article number5
JournalTeachers College Record
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2017

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