Tuesday October 15, 2019

Teenage Boys Use Humour, Irony and Banter to Navigate Social Media Content

For the study, published in Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health, researchers investigated how young boys use Instagram

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Teenage, Boys, Humour
Using humour and irony means that boys can still aspire to have gym bodies and be motivated by sport, exercise and healthy diets, but without the risk of being put down or ridiculed by their peers. Pixabay

Rather than being victims of online harms, such as an unhealthy body image obsession, teenage boys are able to use humour, irony and banter to navigate social media content, a new research found.

“The evidence from teenage boys indicated that you can be a gymlad if you’re ‘ripped’, with a toned gym body, but you can also use gymlad in an ironic way,” said study lead researcher Victoria Goodyear from University of Birmingham in the UK.

“Using humour and irony means that boys can still aspire to have gym bodies and be motivated by sport, exercise and healthy diets, but without the risk of being put down or ridiculed by their peers,” Goodyear said.

For the study, published in Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health, researchers investigated how young boys use Instagram, Snapchat and YouTube to learn about physical activity, diet and body image.

Teenage, Boys, Humour
The evidence from teenage boys indicated that you can be a gymlad if you’re ‘ripped’, with a toned gym body, but you can also use gymlad in an ironic way. Pixabay

Over a 12-month period, more than 1,300 teenage boys from 10 schools and from a range of socio-economic and ethnic backgrounds engaged a series of class activities, interviews, workshops and a survey.

In contrast to popular opinion, the study showed teenage boys were intelligent and critical users and generators of social media.

For example, they used irony, through hashtags like #gymlad to enable them to post selfies about their bodies in the gym without fear of ridicule, and within a context of acceptable banter.

The research highlights the need for adults – parents, carers and teachers – to try to better understand and empathise, rather than criticise how young people use social media.

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“We need to support adults to become more digitally literate, so they understand both the positive and the negative potential of social media,” Goodyear said.

“They can then help young people navigate these landscapes to produce positive health education outcomes.” (IANS)

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Hundreds of Thousands of People Join Teenage Climate Activist Greta Thunberg for a March in Montreal

Thunberg responded to critics, including U.S. President Donald Trump, saying she doesn't understand why grown-ups would choose

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Teenage, Climate Activist, Greta Thunberg
A man sells Greta Thunberg masks during a climate protest rally in Santiago, Chile, Sept. 27, 2019. VOA

Hundreds of thousands of people joined teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg for a march in Montreal Friday, part of a second wave of global protests demanding action on climate change.

Thunberg responded to critics, including U.S. President Donald Trump, saying she doesn’t “understand why grown-ups would choose to mock children and teenagers for just communicating and acting on the science when they could do something good instead.”

Without mentioning Trump by name, Thunberg said, “We’ve become too loud for people to handle so people want to silence us.”

She called on world leaders to do more for the environment, following a meeting earlier Friday with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Teenage, Climate Activist, Greta Thunberg
Hundreds of thousands of people joined teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg for a march in Montreal Friday, part of a second wave of global protests demanding action on climate change. Pixabay

“My message to all the politicians around the world is the same,” she said. “Just listen and act on the current best available science.”

“He (Trudeau) is of course obviously not doing enough, but this is just a huge problem, this is a system that is wrong,” she said.

Trudeau earlier praised Thunberg’s activism saying, “She is the voice of a generation.”

Protests also took place Friday across Europe and Asia, with organizers saying 200,000 people, mainly youths, joined a march in Milan and another 100,000 in Rome.

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Protesters gathered in a host of countries, including India, Spain, Portugal, Sweden, Austria and Germany.

The demonstrations come a week after millions of youths and adults rallied worldwide ahead of the U.N. summit in New York. (VOA)