Although often dismissed as out-of-touch with technology, the majority of older adults (60+) in the United States now use social media. What potential drawbacks and benefits might result from using such platforms? This talk shares insights from both interview- and survey-based research conducted in multiple countries about older adults’ experiences with a variety of social media. Contrary to popular belief, older adults represent significantly varied experiences with online technologies and treating them as one homogenous group of uninformed users misses opportunities for peer support and potential advantages for well-being.
Eszter Hargittai is a professor and holds the Chair of Internet Use and Society at the Department of Communication and Media Research of the University of Zurich. In Fall, 2023, she is William Allan Neilson Professor at Smith College. She is a past fellow of the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford and Harvard’s Berkman Klein Center, MacArthur Foundation, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the U.S. National Science Foundation, Google, Microsoft Research, Facebook, Nokia and Merck, among others. Her work has received awards from several professional associations and for her teaching, she received the Galbut Outstanding Faculty Mentor Award of the School of Communication at Northwestern University.
Hargittai is a fellow of the International Communication Association and an external member of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. Her book Connected in Isolation (The MIT Press, 2022) looks at digital inequality during the Covid pandemic. She has edited four books, most recently, the Handbook of Digital Inequality (Edward Elgar Publishing, 2021). Hargittai holds a Ph.D. in sociology from Princeton University and a B.A. in sociology from Smith College.
Attendance at CITP seminars is open to Princeton University faculty, staff and students.
This seminar will be recorded and posted to the CITP website, the CITP YouTube channel and the Princeton University Media Central channel.