Study: Those who are most ‘connected’ aren't necessarily happy with being so ‘connected’


Are you a Digital Collaborator? A Media Mover? Or maybe you’re a fearsome Ambivalent Networker? No idea what these phrases mean? (Good!) They refer to the level of technological integration in a person’s life. Someone’s who’s a Roving Node is really adept at using one piece of technology in their life—this is the type of person who e-mails all day long, and knows how to do nothing else. At the highest rung of this ladder, the Ambivalent Networkers, there is plenty of doubt about the wisdom of relying upon technology so fiercely. They’re sad clowns.

Ambivalent Networkers are typically 20-something and male (like me!), and who use technology all day long as part of their everyday life; they probably know what a “Tweetdeck” is. These folks text, e-mail, use social networks, tweet, have 1,000 apps on their iPhone, etc. No doubt, this describes more than a few of you guys.

That these people exist isn’t exactly interesting—there have always been “power users,” so to speak. But what does deserve a mention is the degree to which many of these people aren’t sure that tweeting every four minutes, sending a photo of a dog chasing a tennis ball to his tumblr every hour, or texting “hey” to their friends as soon as they get out of work/class is a Good Thing in and of itself; maybe it’s unhealthy to be so damn connected?

Only about 31 percent of these guys actually like being so plugged in; the rest, presumably, are either do it to be part of the crowd(source) or secretly hate the fact that they “have to” tweet so often. More to the point, you’re more likely to bump into an Ambivalent Networker who thinks it’s a good idea to take a rest every once and a while—try telling that to a Media Mover!

All of this, by the way, comes from a new report from the Pew Internet & American Life Project entitled “The Mobile Difference.”

The point? Well, that the people you seeing glued to their iPhone all day long don’t necessarily enjoy that particular lifestyle. Make sure you’re there to support them through this tough time. Or, if you yourself are an Ambivalent Networker, know that there are alternatives to constantly sliding to unlock.

via Ars Technica