The Impacts of Internet on Adolescents in Hong Kong

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The Impacts of Internet on Adolescents in Hong Kong

This is a study of mass media in Hong Kong by focusing on how teenagers consume internet by researching on the usage & categories (this will give a solid introduction to this paper) and three modern problems (heavy uses of social platform, internet addiction, and online gaming addiction“) that a number of teenagers in Hong Kong seems to have or come across with, with reference to data and information that suggest the existent of these phenomenon. In addition Hong Kong’s data will be compared with some western data.

Usage & Categories:
Starting from usage & categories, there will be no doubt to say that almost every teenager in Hong Kong have access to a computer and internet in any sort of way, it might be at school, public internet place, cafe or at home. The way they use internet varies depending on where they are, for example; school use is for work, public internet place use is for gaming if the computer is in a gaming centre or library use is also for work, cafe use is for working or social networking and lastly home use will mostly be on entertainment, social services or private uses.

Solely looking at the statement that just been pointed out it might misinform people the fact that every teenager uses internet the same way as I said but that is not the fact. In a fair way to readdress this, some teenagers are heavy active users, some are not, some focus on gaming while others focus on social networking and some might just use it as an information database.

There are 4878713internet users in Hong Kong, that is 69.2% of the whole population1, and there the population of teenagers (14-19) is 435500 which is 6.5% of Hong Kong’s population2. There are 816 computers per 1000 which puts Hong Kong ranked 11 in the world3, so it is fairly easy to conclude that almost every teenager will be able to have access to a computer and internet in some way, by saying this, any social problem related to computers and internet will have a huge impact to Hong Kong as well as all the teenagers, so will be reasonable to look into problems in this field as these problem are increasingly concerning our society. This problem doesn’t just affect Hong Kong; United Kingdom is ranked 123 which is also in risk of arise of these problems.

Heavy Uses of Social Networking Platforms:
It is very safe to say that almost everyone that owns a computer with internet access will have a Facebook account and according to some research from the internet most teenager uses it ≧4 times a week. Being addicted to social network has slowly becoming a social issue. Data of internet usage in Hong Kong shows that Facebook ranked 4 and Xanga ranked 10, both of these sites have beat other popular websites such as HSBC and Apple4. Facebook has dominated the social networking market mainly because it is free and user friendly, on the other hand teenagers do not use twitter (known to be Facebook’s main rival) because it cost money to “tweet” and they would rather use that money to text their friends on phone, also they know that not much people actually look at what they have ‘tweet’ and slowly loses their interest in doing so5. There also is a very popular blogging site; Xanga. It used to be extremely popular 4 years ago in Hong Kong but due to its layout it has been outplayed by Facebook once it was launched, the problem that Xanga had wasn’t because Facebook was ‘better’, in fact it was because Facebook was just simply easier to use by a long way and just by a couple of clicks you can view what your friends are doing and interact with them without being overwhelmed with unwanted data and advertisements.

Statements and journals have been recently been “yelling” out their views and concerns about this increasingly worrying phenomenon but mainly focusing on Facebook and Twitter. A blogger have said that “For some people Facebook has become like breathing and first thing these people do is...
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