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So who are the "digital natives"?

By Tom Chatfield   August 2009

As Prospect went to press, the papers were breathlessly reporting a 15-year-old Morgan Stanley work experience student’s analysis of teenage media habits (according to the Times, “the PC is a radio, the games console is a telephone” and, most shockingly of all, “no one uses Twitter.”) Why such slack-jawed fascination? Part of the answer, I think, lies buried in a phrase I’ve started to see increasingly often: “digital natives.” Coined in 2001, it describes that recently-discovered sub-species born into a world of digital technology (previously known as teenagers). Rarely has generational angst had such an anthropological flavour. The word “native”…

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