Thursday, February 21, 2008

Where Are All the Girl Bloggers???

Ah, Interweb Mythology

The NYTimes article "Sorry, Boys, This Is Our Domain" highlights the myth that men and boys dominate the internet while women and girls aren't really active world wide web users. Despite the fact that many, many individuals have spent time debunking this untruth (ie, statements of statistics, explanations of cultural expectations, discussions of female visibility, etc), articles like this one still seem to be very necessary in terms of making known the work female internet users.

Specifically, this article concentrates on a recent Pew Institute study that documents that girls (ages 12-17) create more content than boys while also pointing out the gendered differences in technology careers:
The “girls rule” trend in content creation has been percolating for a few years — a Pew study published in 2005 also found that teenage girls were the primary content creators — but the gender gap for blogging, in particular, has widened.

As teenage bloggers nearly doubled from 2004 to 2006, almost all the growth was because of “the increased activity of girls,” the Pew report said.

The findings have implications beyond blogging, according to Pew, because bloggers are “much more likely to engage in other content-creating activities than nonblogging teens.”

But even though girls surpass boys as Web content creators, the imbalance among adults in the computer industry remains. Women hold about 27 percent of jobs in computer and mathematical occupations, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
This article strikes me as a great start to a bigger conversation about gender, blogging, and technology.

What's your take?

PS And what's up with the boys versus girls title? Anyone put up a "opposite sex keep out" sign on her/his website recently? Anyone?

Crossposted at Girl With Pen

Please note that as my M.A. thesis project is complete, the George Washington University is no longer overseeing research conducted in conjunction with this blog (effective June 2007 to present). The Informed Consent Materials created while this blog was under GWU's IRB oversight are still available for your information and the principles outlined in them are still being used as a general guide for my continued work.