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Self-created digital content sharing in retirement

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Tim Riley MeCCSA 2014 presentation - Self-created digital content sharing in retirement

In the United Kingdom the retired population is rising and statistics show that growth in the use of digital technologies and the internet are also increasing within this age group. However a polarised view of this age range has emerged as either a ‘tech-savvy’ ‘silver surfer’ web user or a fearful, ‘digitally dismissive’ reticent nonuser. This suggests an oversimplified perception of the over-65s, a section of society often ignored in qualitative internet research, and overlooks growing numbers who are using digital technology and the internet for something more than to search and consume online goods and materials.

Through the use of qualitative research interviews this paper presents an insight into a small but significant section of retirees who are using the internet to share self-created digital content. Self-created content, in the context of this research, is defined as an arrangement of visual and/or audio material that requires some element of composition or editing.

Participants revealed that they were self-initiated in their uptake of post-retirement education. Nonetheless, the acquisition of digital technology skills were often learnt unintentionally and as a consequence of embracing a new interest in retirement or the rediscovery of an old one that they may not have been able to explore prior to retirement.

This presentation addresses how retired web users deploy self-created content sharing practices to communicate online and their motivations for engaging in these practices. Practices of this kind are of importance for individuals’ self-expression and participation in an increasingly digitalised world.

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Self-created digital content sharing in retirement

  1. 1. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement MeCCSA 2014 8th January 2014 Tim Riley University of Westminster Self-created digital content sharing in retirement
  2. 2. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement 1. Creating and publishing of digital content is no longer the preserve of the professional. 2. Increase in participative media production where users are more actively, responsively, and inclusively engaged. 3. Little is known of the content creation and sharing practices of the adults the UK (particularly +65). 4. Terms such as ‘digital natives’ (Prensky, 2001) and the ‘digital’ and ‘net generation’ (Tapscott, 1999; 2008) appear too simplistic and ignore the diversity of all internet users. Context
  3. 3. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Background • UK population is ageing • Set to continue as ‘baby boomers’ reach retirement • Living alone • Lack of mobility • Issues of care
  4. 4. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Office for National Statistics (2012) Chapter 4: Mortality, 2010-based NPP Reference Volume Background
  5. 5. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Office for National Statistics (2012) Chapter 4: Mortality, 2010-based NPP Reference Volume Background
  6. 6. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Internet access 2013 •83% of households have internet access •73% of adults accessing the Internet everyday Source: Office for National Statistics – Internet Access - Households and individuals 2013. Recent UK Survey Statistics
  7. 7. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Recent UK Survey Statistics
  8. 8. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement +65 digital proficiency An oversimplified perception and polarised view of this age range has emerged. (Gorard and Selwyn, 2008) Either: A ‘silver surfer’ as an older ‘tech-savvy’ web user (Martin, 2007) or A fearful, reticent nonuser - ‘digitally dismissive’ (Morris and Brading, 2007) Gorard, S. & Selwyn, N. (2008), The Myth of the Silver Surfer. Adults Learning, 19:5, pp. 28–30. Martin, N. (2007), Silver surfers take over the internet. Telegraph Media Group Limited Morris, A. & Brading, H. (2007), E-literacy and the grey digital divide: a review with recommendations. Journal of Information Literacy, 1:3.
  9. 9. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement +65 digital proficiency Raban and Brynin argue that: “aging is not a one-dimensional process [and] it would be wrong to assume that only the young have learning curves, even if they move along these curves faster” (2006:43) “a large proportion of older people are ready to adopt new technologies and have positive attitudes towards technology” (2006:48) Raban, Y. & Brynin, M. (2006), Older People and New Technologies. In: Kraut, R., Brynin, M. & Kiesler, S. (eds.) Computers, Phones, and the Internet. New York: Oxford University Press.
  10. 10. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Criteria and themes • Vernacular creativity (outside a professional framework) • Creating digital content (not necessarily ‘user-generated content’) • Sharing self-created digital content • Motivation (intrinsic and extrinsic)
  11. 11. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Definition Content creation in the context of this research is defined as: An arrangement of visual and/or audio material that requires some element of composition or editing that has been created outside of a professional framework. Digital text is not included in this definition, other than its association to the visual and/or audio content. The inclusion of digital text would make analysis of content too broad.
  12. 12. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Types of digital content • Digitally created • Remediate from analogue to digital • Digitised physical content to digital • Digital remix • Remix of digitised analogue and digital content • Remix of digitised physical and digital content • Remix of digitised analogue, physical and digital content • Redacted or re-edited digital • Redacted or re-edited analogue content Content Creation in Context
  13. 13. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Content Creation in Context
  14. 14. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Methodology Age bands of this study +65 (retired) Sample 12 participants already engaged in digital content creation and sharing Qualitative methods Interviews: face-to-face, semi-structured, open-ended and conversational
  15. 15. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Sampling •Theoretical sampling – based on their relevance to the research. •Random sampling would have been unlikely to have located participants already engaged in the creating and sharing of digital content Recruiting participants: Criteria for recruitment of participants required that data was sourced from individuals already engaged in digital content creation and sharing.
  16. 16. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Sampling • Internet: content sharing websites, social media platforms, Social network site, email, forums, internet searches • Telephone: personal one-to-one telephone calls • Educational establishments: universities, colleges • Introductions though events: meet-up groups, organisations (U3A) Interviews: •Face-to-face semi-structured audio recorded (1 via Skype using two-way camera). •Length varied from 30mins to 80mins.
  17. 17. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Participant data
  18. 18. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Key areas of concern 1. Acquiring skills and knowledge of digital domain (re-education). 2. Content creation. 3. Sharing self-created content. 4. Motivation for creating and sharing.
  19. 19. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Key areas of concern Bill: “When you retire if you don’t do something you probably vegetate.”
  20. 20. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement More free time - Gave the majority of the participants the freedom and opportunity to either: •Renew an interest or suppressed ambition from earlier in life, which work and/or raising a family had restricted them from doing. or •Adopt new interests through re-education in universities, colleges or groups, such as the University of the Third Age (U3A). +65 Re-education
  21. 21. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement +65 Re-education All participants undertook some form of post-retirement education. •Self-initiated re-education in retirement •University, college, distance learning, organisations (U3A) All participants created visual content and published to: •A personal blog •Video sharing sites •Photo sharing sites
  22. 22. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement +65 Re-education 1. Participants were self-initiated in their uptake of post- retirement education. • This enabled them to acquire skills necessary to rediscover and explore (creative) interests they were unable to partake earlier in life. • Due to constraints of working, family life or through being discouraged at an early age by family members or institutions.
  23. 23. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement +65 Re-education 2. For some, post-retirement education helps extend or transfer physical world interests they were already engaged in, such as painting or drawing, to a digital form and for sharing. 3. For some, introduction to the digital domain was an unintended consequence of post-retirement education • This often came via interest in subjects such as photography or astronomy, where introduction to digital technology or software was necessary for successful completion and progression.
  24. 24. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement +65 Re-education 4. For some, knowledge attained from formal education led them to adopt ‘trial and error’ learning as a way to gain a higher proficiency of digital technology. • Several complained there were very few intermediate software courses available to them. • Participants adopted learning through online peer knowledge transfer.
  25. 25. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Content creation Digital Photography: •Introductory gateway content creation medium. •Ease of use – compared to the ridged nature and processes associated with analogue photography. •Introduction to editing and compositing software packages, such as Adobe Photoshop. •Encouraged creative experimentation with layout, composition and layering.
  26. 26. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement www.youtube.com/user/geriatric1927 Content creation
  27. 27. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement geriatric1927 First video – August 4th 2006 As of 1st January 2014 41,716 subscribers 9,254,830 video views 430 videos Content creation
  28. 28. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Content creation Blogs and websites: •Creation and management of websites as a hobby (through membership of an organisation e.g. farmers market or geological society). •Local and global in reach. •Altruistic. •Encouraged the publishing of remediated non-digital content (drawings, paintings). •Introduction to community and sharing that accompanied having a blog.
  29. 29. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Content creation • Artistic self-expression. • Sense of achievement. • Creative satisfaction. • Confidence.
  30. 30. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Sheila: “I’m retired. I live on my own [but] I just feel closer to people and I don’t feel alone.” June: “I am less alone and I can share what I create and I can discover others work and they can discover me and I can pass it on.” Content sharing
  31. 31. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Content sharing The adoption or transfer of vernacular creative practices to the internet afforded greater modes of communication and content sharing opportunities. •Helped connect participants to local and non-local communities and special interest/niche groups. •Helped connect to local interest groups and engage physically in social activities. •Helped bring closer ties between friends and community, and linked health, mobility and knowledge. •Helped combat loneliness through sharing and communication.
  32. 32. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Motivation to create and share content Jane: “It makes you feel good when someone says they really like your picture so that is definitely a motivation for sharing it.”
  33. 33. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Motivation to create and share content • Rediscovery or adoption of creative practices. • Ability to connect with an niche online communities (both location and non-location based) • Receive and give feedback (which helps build creative self- confidence). • Learning through social interaction (both online and offline). • Altruism.
  34. 34. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Conclusion • Recognition of the diversity of knowledge of over 65s – career experiences, hobbies, access to technologies and education. • Value of sharing self-created content. • Encourages less phatic communication due to discussions and conversations about content and practice. • May help combat issues of issues of loneliness, social and physical isolation, and lack of mobility as number of retired citizens increases.
  35. 35. Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement Tim Riley – University of Westminster – Self-created digital content sharing in retirement tim@timrileydigital.com @timfrantic Thank you

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