Growing out of overconnection: the process of dis/connecting among Norwegian and Portuguese teenagers

Ana Jorge*, Mehri Agai, Patrícia Dias, Leonor Cunha Vaz Martinho

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Abstract

Young people struggle with permanent online connection that is associated with their generation. This article looks at teenagers’ affective relationship to connectivity and disconnectivity, and how it is socioculturally influenced by the media, family, and peers. It reports on an interview study with 36 teenagers between 15 and 19 years of age from Norway and Portugal. Our findings evidenced how disconnection may arise out of a latent feeling of “disaffect” generated in the experience of the ambience of connected and platform culture as well as the media; or of the unavailability created by how teenagers spend their leisure time, which is influenced by families’ moral economies. Teenagers have to perform affective labor in managing the different, sometimes contradictory, forces that converge in the experience of connectivity. Managing digital disconnection appears as an individual—but socially produced—moral obligation to self-govern, to which teenagers have unequal conditions.

Original languageEnglish
JournalNew Media and Society
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 17 Mar 2023

Keywords

  • Affect
  • Connectivity
  • Digital culture
  • Disconnection
  • Social media

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