Free download of danah boyd's must-read book "It's Complicated"


Hah! Too late! Bought it Friday…

Reasonable on Kindle or Nook. Bought a copy since I like to support writers, but a nice thought. I have a 17 year old so if it helps me understand him and his world even a little better it is worth it.

I just finished listening to this book on audible, and I have to admit I was a little underwhelmed. Blame it on my graduating from high school in 2005 with a livejournal and a facebook account, but I really didn’t feel like there was anything surprising in “It’s Complicated.”

Maybe I’m just thrown off because I’m closer to a “networked teen” than a “clueless adult.” Anybody have the same experience with the book, or maybe the opposite one?

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Hmmmm, must be popular - the page does not exist…

You are probably a lot closer to being the subject of the book than being the audience, and the fact that you didn’t find anything surprising could be a flag that boyd’s research is reasonably accurate to your experiences. It wasn’t that surprising to me either, but I’m even closer to that demographic ('08 high school).

Rest assured, there are people for whom this book is quite shocking. That’s kind of the social science dilemma, actually – either something is incredibly shocking and could never be true ever, or it’s something ‘everyone knows.’ Often it’s both at the same time to different people.

The original title for this book was “Like, Duh” because whenever I’d turn over my findings to teens they would roll their eyes and tell me it was obvious. And then they’d ask why I was wasting my time. Their parents, OTOH, would look at me like I was an alien. It’s this disconnect that I’m trying to solve but I don’t expect younger folks to necessarily come away so shocked and awed. I’m more grateful when they come away thinking I did justice to the dynamics that were all around them. It’s really the older crowd that I’m trying to help see the world from a different perspective.


That was basically the impression I got.

Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been recommending the book to a lot of people, but mostly older people I know rather than peers.

Just posting to say thanks for the book, since the author ir reading this thread.

I’m firmly in the demographic that saw Cory’s previous post and thought, “That sounds interesting”, but wouldn’t buy the book because it’s of limited relevance to my life (my child is a toddler, so I’ll be more interested in a revised 2020 edition/sequel).

Since it’s free, I’ll read it at some point to get a better idea of what it’s really like to grow up with “online” being a normal thing rather than some exciting new technology.
I’m really interested to see if my following car analogy holds true:
Generation X and Y grew up in a car-society but we don’t expect Generation X to have an intuitive knowledge of car mechanics, and in many cases they know less than their parent’s generation. They merely know the basics of driving and hope nothing expensive/dangerous goes wrong. I’m pretty sure Generation Z won’t have an intuitive knowledge of the new ‘online’ society, they’ll just know the basics of how to work the technology involved and hope nothing expensive/dangerous goes wrong.

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I bought it on Thursday after seeing the BB recommendation. I have a 13yo who is new to instagram, and two younger kids who don’t have online presences. So far nothing in the book has surprised me but I’m still glad I’m reading it. My 13yo looked at the cover and concluded the book is stupid and she doesn’t want me reading it.

That is a statement you’re going to need to get used to…

That’s an interesting analogy. I wonder if another aspect of it will also become true: I think people in my generate (X) are less inclined to work on cars because it has also become much more difficult to work on cars. The engines are computerized and more complicated in general. Heck, I know a bit about cars, and I couldn’t do anything with mine because it’s impossible for me to access most parts of it, physically. Gone are the days when you could get a wrench in there without removing half of the engine first. I suppose that might be analogous to computers becoming less tinkering-friendly, in general.

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