Here are the key terms from the glossary in the Teaching Tech-Savvy Kids book.

©Corwin Press 2010

Anime (n): Japanese-style animation that emphasizes visual styles

Appropriation (v): the ability to meaningfully sample and remix media content

Asynchronous communication (n): online communication in which both parties do not have to be present at the same time. Information is saved and can be viewed at a later time. This includes sending e-mail, blogging, and responding to posts on bulletin boards or in online forums

Synchronous communication: the opposite of asynchronous communication in that two or more people communicate at the same time but not necessarily in the same place. Examples include Web conferencing, instant messaging, and online chat rooms

Avatar (n): a computerized representation of a person usually as a two-dimensional icon. View examples from Mr. Freccia’s avatar in WikiFreccia in Chapter 4 and Rik Panganiban’s in the What Are Virtual Worlds section in Chapter 6

Blog or weblog (n): a Web site usually maintained by an individual or an organization with regular entries related to the theme of the blog. These entries can include commentary, descriptions of events, or other materials such as photographs or videos

Blogging (v) is used to describe the act of maintaining or adding content to a blog. Visit danah boyd’s blog at http://www.apophenia.com/ or the MacArthur Foundation’s blog titled Spotlight on Digital Media and Learning at http://spotlight.macfound.org. One of Jessica’s personal favorites is Henry Jenkin’s blog at http://www.henryjenkins.org

Collage (n): a combination of different things to create meaning

Collective intelligence (v): the ability to pool knowledge and compare notes with others toward a common goal

Copyright (n): a legal concept used by most national governments that gives the creator of an original work exclusive rights to it, usually for a limited period of time. It gives the copyright holder the right to be credited for the work, to determine who (if anyone) may adapt the work to other forms, to determine who may perform the work, to benefit financially from the work, and other related rights

Creative Commons (n): a nonprofit organization devoted to expanding the range of creative works available for others to build upon legally and to share. This organization has released several copyright licenses to provide more choice in ownership for creators to share their work

Cutup method (v): a remix method performed by taking a finished text (printed on paper) and cutting it into pieces with a few or single words on each piece. The resulting pieces are then rearranged into a new text


Designer (n): someone who designs how a webpage or video game looks and how it functions. Taking a position as a designer means that you are taking a step back from reading the content and trying to understand how a wiki, Web page, video game or any digital content is designed to look and function

DJ (disc jockey) (n): a person who selects and plays recorded music, no matter the source, for an audience

Fair use (n): a defense used in cases to decide whether or not someone has violated copyright laws. The idea of fair use of materials began as a way to allow for people to use copyrighted materials in very specific ways: “criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including making multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research” (Copyright Act of 1976, 17 U.S.C. § 107). Whether or not using the copyrighted materials is fair use is determined by four principles, found in the Copyright Act of 1976:

  • The purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial (for profit) nature or is for nonprofit, educational purposes
  • The nature of the copyrighted work
  • The amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole
  • The effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work

Fandom (n): a community of people who share an interest. Fandoms can range from fans of a particular sports team to fans of a television show, movie or book series. Online fandoms are most often based around media

Flagging (v): the flag button on a particular YouTube video alerts the administrator’s attention that a video may contain inappropriate material such as excessive violence. YouTube’s Web page says that it does not automatically remove a video that is flagged, but it will investigate the issue

Friendship-driven practices (n): a phrase used by Ito et al. (2008) in their final report, “Kids’ Informal Learning with Digital Media: An Ethnographic Investigation of Innovative Knowledge Cultures.” It refers to the networks that are youth’s primary source for affiliation, friendship, and romantic partners (9–10). Visit  http://digitalyouth.ischool.berkeley.edu/report to download the final report

Game world (n): a fictional setting in which characters interact to accomplish certain goals as defined by the parameters of the game

Instant message (n) or instant messaging (v) (IM or IMing): a type of real-time communication based on typing someone a message through a network such as Yahoo! Messenger or AOL Messenger. It is a form of synchronous communication

Interest-driven practices (n): a phrase used by Ito (2008) in their final report, “Kids’ Informal Learning with Digital Media: An Ethnographic Investigation of Innovative Knowledge Cultures.” It refers to networks that support youth and their specialized activities and interests (10). Visit http://digitalyouth.ischool.berkeley.edu/report to download the final report


Linkshells (n): player-created communities that happen in-game and require invitation, have dedicated chat channels, and often have their own organized activities. They are similar to guilds of other MMORPGs

Luddite (n): connotes a person or group who opposes technological progress. For a discussion of the social movement of British textile artisans known as Luddites, visit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Luddite

Mashup (v): to borrow elements from a number of different sources to create a new message

Massively multiplayer online role playing game (n) (MMORPG): this genre of role-playing games has garnered global popularity due to the large number of players who can interact with one another in virtual worlds. World of Warcraft boasts over 11 million players worldwide; read about Andy Maul’s experiences with the game in Chapter 5

Meme (n): a small, flexible bit of cultural information that is shared in informal (or viral) ways. See Chapter 5 for an example from Facebook

Multiuser dungeon or domain (n) (MUD): in the very early days of the Internet (before it was the World Wide Web), MUDs provided players with a virtual space for social interaction based on textual commands and description

Networked public (n): a networked public is both the space constructed through networked technologies and the people who are connected by those technologies. Networked publics are spaces that share many of the same properties as unmediated publics like parks, cafes, malls, or parking lots

Offline resources (n): resources that are accessed somewhere other than the Internet or other online services. Some examples are books or journals in a library, encyclopedias, and hard copy papers

Online resources (n): resources accessed on the Internet, online services, or internal networks. Examples include Wikipedia, articles on the Web, and reference materials


Participatory cultures (n): a term used by Professor Henry Jenkins to describe groups that are very open and encourage contribution of cultural material (such as fan fiction or videos) to the group. People often find encouragement and support and feel that their contribution will be valued

Post or posting (v): the act of sending an electronic message, article, or video to a site. In most instances this allows other users to view the posting. Patricia G. Lange discusses how she posts her videos on her video blogs in Chapter 3

Recut (v): a parody trailer for a movie created by editing footage from that movie or from its original trailers and thus is a form of mashup

Relational Perspective (n): the view that technological practice are bound to social life and not simply “neutral” tools

Remix (v): to take an existing work and make a new version by including new elements such as audio or narration

Remix (n): a new form of media inspired and adapted from an original source

Search engine (n): a Web search engine designed to search for information on the Internet. General examples include Google.com and Yahoo.com, but even YouTube can have its own search engine embedded into its Web site. For a brief history of search engines, visit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Search_Engines

Simulation (v): the ability to interpret and construct dynamic models of real-world processes

Social network sites (n) (SNSs): Web-based sites that allow individuals to construct a public or semipublic profile within a bounded system, articulate a list of other users with whom they share a connection, and view and traverse their list of connections and those made by others within the system. Examples include MySpace, Facebook, and this Ning network

Traffic (n): the amount of activity a Web site such as YouTube receives during a given period of time

Tweet (n): a short text-based post that is no more than 140 characters sent to a group of people. It is a form of micro-blogging and used through the social networking site

Twitter feed (n): a series of tweets similar to a threaded discussion by one or more authors


User (n): someone who uses a computer to access Web sites or logs into e-mail accounts. Users are different from designers in that they are interacting with the site for its content and resources and are not necessarily attentive to the organization or function of the site itself

Video blog or vlog (n): a version of a blog or weblog, a personal video site that uses video as the main way to communicate messages. Although it foregrounds videos, video blogs often contain other media such as photographs and text comments that people post to a video. Video blogging includes many different genres that range from the professionally-oriented narrative with actors, scripts, and editing to more diary or communicative forms in which people address a camera directly to share intimate thoughts. There are video blogs centered around certain themes, such as citizen journalism, how-to videos for tasks such as cooking, and video blogs targeted toward youth. Visit Patricia G. Lange’s video blog at http://www.youtube.com/user/AnthroVlog

Virtual worlds (n): computer-generated, two- or three-dimensional, multi-user spaces, where people interact with each other and the environment through their avatars. Some examples of virtual worlds are Second Life, Whyville, World of Warcraft, and Webkins. These environments often mimic characteristics of the real world, including having land, water, space, gravity, buildings, and even weather. Read Rik Panganiban’s vignette on virtual worlds in Chapter 6 and visit http://www.rezed.org to learn more about virtual worlds and education

Visualization (v): the ability to interpret and create data representations for the purposes of expressing ideas, finding patterns, and identifying trends

Wiki (n): a collaborative Web site that allows users to add and edit content. Visit Wikipedia to view the user-generated encyclopedia or visit Wikispaces to take a tour of how a wiki can assist educators


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