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Recent CRN Activities: Interview with 100 Teens

Media Kids Research Project was inaugurated with the founding of CRN. This group researches how children use the latest media by holding workshops with children and directly communicating with them.

See: Future Experience Workshop, Takeyama Laboratory, Keio University
Case Study of Children's WEB Utilization,Shinya Kawakami,CRN Researcher


From late 2003 to 2004, broadband Internet service became prevalent in Japan, extending to even households. As third generation mobile phones (3G) became popular, nearly all came equipped with camera, mail and Internet functions. It can be assumed that children born and raised in this media environment have a vastly different perception of media than that of adults. What do the Internet and mobile phones mean to young people nowadays? This fiscal year, we began a project to interview 100 teens and find out from them in their own words.

See: http://blog.livedoor.jp/tn100nin/
We are interviewing students from the higher grades of elementary school to senior high school students. So far, eight interviews have been completed. After each interview, notes are posted on the blog, but since these are written in Japanese, I have included a few statements below.

With a mobile phone, I don't need a digital camera. (Girl, 18)
I don't want to own both. Just a mobile phone is fine if it has camera functions. And a resolution of 1.3 million pixels is good enough because I don't print photos, but only look at them on my mobile phone. I don't save the photos on my PC, either. I sometimes send photos by e-mail, to my hairdresser, for example, to show her what my hair looks like.

I don't watch TV or read the paper (Girl, 18)
I'm too busy to watch TV and I don't read the newspaper, either. If I have time, I'd rather surf the Internet than watch TV. My teacher tells me to read the paper, but I can get news on the Internet, and it is much easier to understand. Also,the articles I want to read are updated in real time.

After beginning the interviews, I realized that parents rather than the school have a greater influence on issues of children and media. Children need parental consent to own a mobile phone, and in most cases, parents pay the bills. Owning a PC and internet access at home are also subjected to parental choice. Some children mentioned that their fathers were absorbed in games. Now that parents today are a generation accustomed to games, computers, and mobile phone, children's perceptions of media will change even more. We look forward to more interviews and hearing what these children have to say!

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