Warm Experts 2.0

  • Sakari TaipaleEmail author


This chapter focuses on family roles in digital families, drawing upon, and updating for the present day, the concept of the warm expert. First, the impact of information and communication technologies on family roles is investigated, based on qualitative research material collected from Finland, Italy and Slovenia in 2014 and 2015. After that the analysis looks at how family roles and responsibilities can change over the human life course. Three types of warm experts are identified, with their characteristics described and discussed. Lastly, the argument is made that intimately knowing the other family members is an essential quality of those acting in the role of warm experts, and that while acting in the role of an warm expertise is often demanding, it can also be rewarding to not just those benefiting from it, but also those in it.


Family relationships Family roles Information and communication technology Life course Proxy user Technology co-use Warm expert 


  1. Bakardjieva, M. (2005). Internet society: The internet in everyday life. London: Sage.Google Scholar
  2. Barnard, Y., Bradley, M. D., Hodgson, F., & Lloyd, A. D. (2013). Learning to use new technologies by older adults: Perceived difficulties, experimentation behaviour and usability. Computers in Human Behavior, 29(4), 1715–1724.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Dolničar, V., Grošelj, D., Hrast, M. F., Vehovar, V., & Petrovčič, A. (2018). The role of social support networks in proxy Internet use from the intergenerational solidarity perspective. Telematics and Informatics, 35(2), 305–317.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Selwyn, N., Johnson, N., Nemorin, S., & Knight, E. (2016). Going online on behalf of others: An investigation of ‘proxy’ internet consumers. Sydney: Australian Communications Consumer Action Network.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of JyväskyläJyväskyläFinland

Personalised recommendations