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Due to the novelty of the topic in the Romanian context, multiple dimensions were taken into consideration. In order to move beyond the victimization perspective, this article relies mostly on the social agency theory that envisions teenagers as skilled and informed actors, who possess the technological, social and communicative competencies which enable them to distinguish between safe and unsafe situations both online and offline. The sample consisted of subjects aged 10 to 19 who completed a self-report questionnaire administered in classrooms from secondary schools and high schools in Cluj- Napoca, Romania, Girl talk 101 local sex personals study November of the analyses indicate a series of factors ificantly associated with this particular practice, with some differences for boys and girls, e.
Among the most important predictors, e. Other items, like parental monitoring and exposure to sexually explicit content, showed ambivalent relation to the investigated behavior. Key words: adolescents, online-offline dating, predictors, skilled social agents. More recently, while technophobes are increasingly nuancing their discourse, scholars have begun to focus on specific issues and risk groups.
Second, adolescents often act as skilled agents, employing various communication tools for a series of purposes, although the delineation is not always clear instrumental, rational purposes that overlap with ludic, playful experimentations ; it should be kept in mind that while teenagers might become victims of online deceit, they themselves may also misrepresent personal information and lie. Therefore, there is a need for contextualizing Internet use within everyday practices, for seeing children as active agents, in order to avoid constructing them as passive or vulnerable Livingstone, In addition to this, I will try to avoid the rhetoric of moral panic, doubled by the "moral quality of the discourse of innocence" Meyer, intertwined with the sacralisation of childhood.
In light of the fast pace of Internet adoption and the spread of new uses, it becomes more and more necessary to view the children as skilled agents in using different Internet tools, often more skilled that most adults:. Such demands assume that children need adult protection, which is incongruent with claims that children tend to be more skilled at using the Internet than their parents. Livingstone,p. Although critics could argue that Girl talk 101 local sex personals study is precisely the problem: they are skilled, but not self-reflexive and they lack the maturity to grasp the whole meaning and possible implications of their actions, I feel strongly that a shift in perspective is necessary.
It has been argued that the discourse of innocence turns children into helpless victims in constant need of adult protection, through re-productions of children representations as both structurally and innately vulnerable Meyer, One concept that proves useful is structural vulnerability as opposed to physical or social vulnerabilitywhich is constructed through asymmetrical power relations mainly between children and adults and reinforced by the discourse of innocence.
The attempt to bring together research on adolescent behavior and research related to romance and sexuality on the Internet appears to be a difficult endeavor. While on one hand, there is the mainstream panic voice that calls for safety precautions when surfing the Web doubled by the fear that adults will not be able to keep pace with the technological perspectiveon the other hand we have the perspective of skilled, rational, utilitarian adults, using the Internet for various instrumental purposes, including sexually related.
From the latter, two theoretical ideas about dating practices of adults investigated by Peter and Valkenburg have caught my attention: the compensation hypothesis looking for casual dates online in order to compensate for shortcomings in offline dating, e. However, in the case of teenagers, specific conditions such as peer pressure and the nature of the online communication might work in a completely different direction: popular teenagers, with high physical and social self-esteem might have a higher probability to engage in online-offline dating due to the high visibility to their circle of friends, classmates or schoolmates.
Conversely, the same mechanisms would prevent shy ones to expose themselves to possible scrutiny and ridicule. As for the recreation hypothesis, even though high-sensation seeking adolescents might engage in more active search for sexually explicit material or dates, any investigation should take into their ludic tendencies, such as deliberate dissimulation of information on the Internet. Wanted, deliberate exposure was found to be higher for boys and youth who talked to strangers online about sex Wolak et al.
In line with the above mentioned research, I predicted that deliberate exposure to explicit content, along with surfing for topics related to sex life or surfing for romantic contacts, would be positively connected to the online-offline dating decision; however, my subsequent goal is to see also whether the exposure to unwanted sexual materials and solicitations online acts as a negative predictor of the decision to continue the interpersonal relation formed online with an offline date encounter. Moreover, unwanted exposure seems to be higher for teenagers with higher depression scores Wolak et al.
Consequently, I formulated the following hypotheses:. Exposure to unwanted material and sexual solicitations online is negatively related to the On-Off dating decision. In line with findings Mesch,I expect deliberate exposure to pornography to be gender-dependent. Identity management. However, keeping in mind that teenagers act as skilful social agents, it is time to bring these two perspectives back together. While engaging in various degrees of online disclosure usually on their SNS profilessome teenagers also choose to deliberately dissimulate lie about their Girl talk 101 local sex personals study, looks, school or even sex.
For example, teenagers use deception strategies either for play or identity management purposes in order to maintain the control over the online interactions. According to Toma et al. The dynamic nature of this communication pattern restricts any elaborate self-presentation to the personal profile on the SNS, while maintaining scarce cues and scripts for the instant communication. For adolescents, the relation between the offline and online self has a particular nature.
In addition to this, teenagers employ various strategies to optimize their dating selections through referrals, e. Photographs on SNS profiles and referrals might work as warrants. Nevertheless, identity experiments on the Internet might prove to entail several benefits. Valkenburg and Peter report that adolescents who engage in online identity experimentation also communicate more often with people of various ages and cultural backgrounds.
Identity protective behavior could be seen as a component of the broader attitudes and behavioral set that can be described as Internet safety practices. Identity protective behavior could be influenced by various factors e. Identity protective behavior nondisclosure and dissimulation is negatively related to On-Off dating decision. SNS use and online profiles One of the tools from the multimodal technologies Ledbetter, the adolescents employ in order to present themselves to peer-groups and potential partners are the personal profiles on SNS sites that have recently received increasing appeal among the communication and networking tools employed by the young Romanian population.
Smith found that teenagers who have a SNS profile or post pictures of themselves online are no more likely than other youth to be contacted by online strangers. Others Rosen, have discovered other benefits of SNS use: more support from friends, more honest communication that would complement our suppositionsless shyness both online and offline. Because of the extensive use of IM communication among Romanian teenagers, I pd a similar connection to the dating behavior; therefore I included both social tools in the analysis:. In a study related to feelings of insecurity and fear of crime among teenagers, de Groof assessed the positive connection between the level of parental supervision here, monitoring and the level of fear experienced by children.
Moreover, in their study conducted on Australian teenagers, Fleming, Greentree, Cocotti-Muller, Elias and Morrison found out that younger teenagers who Girl talk 101 local sex personals study not discuss Internet safety with their parents are less safety conscious. In line with this logic, I assumed that a perception of more extensive supervision of time, content and Internet contacts would be negatively related to the decision of meeting someone offline.
With a H5: The extent of parental monitoring online and offline has a negative influence on the On-Off dating decision. Conversely, I pd that teenagers with a more positive self-image are more likely to engage in offline encounters with people met online. Some of the psychosocial factors defined as self-concept Harter, ; Heim et al.
The amount of time spent online is positively correlated with On-Off dating decision. Method self-report questionnaires were administered in classrooms from secondary and high schools in Cluj-Napoca, Romania, in November Approval to conduct the survey was obtained from the local school inspectorate and from the principals of each school included in the sample.
Although the questionnaire aimed to encompass a variety of activities and behaviors, both online and offline, a special part was dedicated to issues related to online-offline dating. Table 1: Descriptive Characteristics of the Sample On average, boys in our sample use the Internet for 3 hours on a school day Std.
Also, the teenagers have been using the Internet for 2. Correlation coefficients were moderate but ificant at p How often do you surf the Internet to find pornographic material? S2 How often do you surf the Internet to find advice about sex life? A reliability analysis was conducted for the nine items. One item had rather low interitem correlations with the others S1 and the Alpha coefficient was. The item that had the highest interitem correlations overall was setting up actual dates with persons met online.
The most frequent form of parental control is related to the time the children spend in front of the PC reported by Nevertheless parental monitoring offline general can be described as characterizing girls more than boys. No ificant correlation was detected between the items of parental monitoring online both general and SNS specific and offline. Week positive correlations were found between the items of general online monitoring and SNS monitoring. There is no special attention in terms of parental monitoring for children that use SNSs in comparison with chil dren that do not use these services.
However, parental monitoring or mediation items were included in the regression models, even though the prediction value was rather low. Amongst those who have not, the most frequent reason is the minimization of the importance of the incident. Our are consistent with research on Internet dangers e. We also included several items of personal identity management disclosure but also dissimulation, on the grounds of the agency perspective.
Table 3: Disclosure of personal information on SNS profiles. One item had the lowest interitem correlations with other items in the reliability analysis posting the name of the city in the personal SNS profilethe explanation being that all the SNS sites offer default enabling of location visibility and favor the display of geographical networks. After the item was removed, the Alpha coefficient was.
Another dimension of identity management can be classified among agency items, namely the online dissimulation and identity play. Table 4: Dissimulation of personal information online e Other factors We asked our subjects to self-evaluate a series of social skills and abilities in comparison to other peers of same age and sex, on a 5-point scale varying from 1 much less to 5 much more.
Some of the items those with positive connotations revealed internal correlations interitem analysis — Alpha coefficient. The items included in the PSDD are:. How much you would say the expression …. The correlation was. First, bivariate associations were calculated in order to assess the preliminary impact of the independent variables in the explanatory model Table 5. Several differences can be observed from bivariate analyses between boys and girls with respect to factors that might influence the On-Off dating decision.
Table 5: Bivariate associations with online-offline dating for boys and girls. Partially confirmed for boys and girls the active search for pornographic materials is not ificant. Exposure to unwanted material and sexual solicitations online is negatively related to On-Off dating decision. Not confirmed for the unwanted solicitations- there is no connection. Infirmed for the unwanted exposure to sexually explicit content positive connection for both boys and girls. Adolescents who seek potential partners do not hide. Their SNS profiles are open to anyone, some of them revealing personal information e.
Partially confirmed for boys and girls — restrictions of SNS profiles are negatively related to the On-Off dating. Some of the dissimulation actions are positively connected to the On-Off dating decision. Furthermore, the use of social and communication tools Instant Messaging, SNS, webcams is positively related to the On-Off dating, as well as to other aspects of online sociability of persons the teenager talks to on the Internet, higher of friends since using the Internet.
Confirmed for boys and girls. Other mediation items had no influence in the model. The extent of parental monitoring online and offline is negatively correlated to the On-Off dating decision. Not confirmed for boys. Partially confirmed for the offline monitoring of girls. Partially infirmed for the general online monitoring Girl talk 101 local sex personals study girls.
Further items were introduces, e.
The amount of time spent online is positively correlated with the On-Off dating decision. As predicted, higher sociability and social self-esteem are positively connected to online-offline dating, one explanation being the relative visibility of this particular practice to the peer group. Loneliness does not influence the decision.Girl talk 101 local sex personals study
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