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FSD2533 Virtual Youth Work 2007: Youth Survey

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Authors

  • Merikivi, Jani (Finnish Youth Research Society. Finnish Youth Research Network)

Keywords

consumers, expenditure, income, internet, online services, parental supervision, social media, virtual communities, youth, youth culture, youth work

Abstract

The survey studied the social virtual world Habbo Hotel and online youth counselling carried out there by the Netari.fi project. The respondents were young people who use Habbo Hotel. Data were also collected from parents using the Suomi24 service (FSD2534).

First, the respondents rated the importance of various communication channels (press, radio, television, Internet and other communication networks, books, movies, mobile phone). The next set of questions covered patterns of Internet use: location of use, duration, frequency, location of computer at home, number of computers at home, type of user and for what used the Internet (e.g. online banking, music, chatting, games, shopping). The respondents were asked how familiar they were with a number of Finnish and international online web services and how strictly specific online discussion forums were moderated. Views were probed on how useful the Internet was for various things, for instance, for information searching, keeping in touch with others, shopping etc. The survey also investigated whether parents participated in the respondents' Internet use, what kind of advice they had given regarding the use, and whether they put any restrictions on the use.

Patterns of Habbo Hotel use were charted: frequency, duration, parental attitudes, activities done in Habbo during the past month, methods of acquiring property, membership in groups, use of money in Habbo etc. The respondents were also asked how important various aspects of Habbo were to them and to what extent they agreed with a number of statements relating to Habbo.

The survey investigated the use, opinions on and knowledge of the Netari virtual youth house and online youth counselling carried out there. The respondents were asked whether they had visited the youth house, how often, how they perceived the youth house and whether the presence of youth workers had increased the time or amount of money they spent in Habbo.

One theme pertained to money. Questions covered how much money the respondents received from parents and other sources and what they would do if they had more money. Futher questions explored how difficult it would be for the respondents to give up certain things (such as the mobile phone, certain things in Habbo, a real pet etc), how important a number of things (e.g. a fine room in Habbo or stylish clothes) were to them, and what kind of gifts they liked. Opinions on the best brands of mobile phones, clothes and magazines were charted. The respondents were also asked to define what kind of consumers they were.

Background variables included the respondent's gender, age, economic activity or at which level studying, number of siblings, household composition, type of accommodation, housing tenure, number of cars in the household, holidays abroad during the past year, and employment situation of the parents.

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