Publication: Research › PaperPublished
Publication: Research › Paper
In 1998, a survey of American teenagers showed that one out of six expected to use the Internet as a substitute for their current religious practices within the next five years. Today, almost ten years later, the question of the significance of online religion for young people does still to a large extent remain to be answered. Sweden presents an interesting case for studying the impact of computer-mediated communication on religious change among young people. During the latest years, a number of studies exploring how young people use the internet as a new social arena for discussion religion has been carried out. These studies have mainly focused on web sites connected to a particular religious tradition, and on interviews with a smaller number of individual users. Up till now, no large-scale study exploring if, when and how young people turn to the Internet for religious purposes has been carried out. This paper will present findings from the first online survey conducted on the largest Swedish social networking site, Lunarstorm, during april 2007. The study can complement and nuance previous research in several ways. This concerns, firstly, hypotheses about the significance of the internet as an arena for encountering religion in comparison with other arenas. Secondly, the study can contribute to a more thorough analysis of variations in uses of the internet for religious purposes among young people with different religious background. Finally, it opens up for a critical discussion of for what purposes young people use the internet for religious purposes, and where future research might be directed. In discussing these issues, this paper might also contribute to a further discussion about how the internet augments the mediatization of religion in late modern society.
|Number of pages||22|
|Conference||Nordic Conference on Media and Communication Research / NordMedia 2007|
|Period||16-08-07 → 19-08-07|