Adolescent Online Communication: Old Issues, New Intensities


Much has been made of the new communication forms that are emerging online and of their popularity among adolescents. Are these new forms fundamentally changing adolescent behavior or are they simply providing new venues for what are “traditionally” adolescent issues? In this talk, I will present findings from studies on two different communication forms to argue that these new Internet forums are being used by adolescents to confront and deal with the changes and developmental issues that they have always faced. Because of the medium’s affordances however, we sometimes see these “old” behaviors in new intensities.

Adolescent Online Communication; Old Issues; New Intensities
Author biography

Kaveri Subrahmanyam

Kaveri Subrahmanyam Kaveri Subrahmanyam, PhD, is Professor of Psychology at California State University, Los Angeles and Associate Director of the Children’s Digital Media Center @ Los Angeles. She studies the cognitive and social implications of interactive media use and is currently researching the daily use of interactive media among youth as well as the academic and cognitive implications of multitasking. Dr. Subrahmanyam has published several research articles on youth and digital media and co-edited a special section on interactive media and human development for Developmental Psychology (2012) and a special issue on social networking for the Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology (2008). She is the co-author (with David Smahel) of Digital Youth: The Role of Media in Development (Springer, 2011). She can be reached at ksubrah(at)

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