Understanding Technology

  • Emma Bond
Part of the Studies in Childhood and Youth book series (SCY)


Rule (2002, p. 242) outlines key theoretical models that have previously shaped knowledge of communication technologies, and proposes that ‘if we are to grasp the role of technology in the changing social world, it helps to take stock of where the concepts for understanding that role come from ’. Drawing on his suggestion, this third chapter explores the theoretical literature on technology to broaden the previous conceptual framework on understanding childhood, outlined in Chapter 2, and clarifies emerging themes and categories in light of other social phenomena. The rapidity with which children and young people are gaining access to online, convergent, mobile and networked technologies is unprecedented in the history of technological innovation and diffusion (Ólafsson et al., 2013, p. 6). In order to understand the claim made by Ólafsson and her colleagues above, some consideration of the history of technological innovation and diffusion is required, and theoretically how this history has been and is understood. This approach is important as, rather than consider each technology as a separate entity with different characteristics, Rice (1999) argues that it is important to have a broader understanding of media technologies and that it is essential to consider both the consistencies and the inconsistencies. He suggests that it is beneficial to study attributes of media in general, and the paradoxes created by both new and familiar media.


Mobile Phone Everyday Life Social Medium Public Sphere Everyday Experience 
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Copyright information

© Emma Bond 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Emma Bond
    • 1
  1. 1.University Campus SuffolkIpswichUK

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