Impact and Implications of New Information Technology on Middle Eastern Youth
This paper presents and reflects upon Middle Eastern youth’s use of new information technology (IT) and the implications of that use. Several key problems and great prospects related to that use will be identified. Middle Eastern youth were found to be fond of their IT use mostly because of their ability to access all sorts of information and communicate with the outside world, including friends and family members abroad. To those youth, while IT is building bridges between them and distant others, it is also building ever stronger walls between them and close individuals, including family members, relatives, and neighbors at the same time. Those youth admit that they surround themselves with IT tools while paying little attention to some of their own needs as well as the needs of others around them. In addition, they are fully aware that misuse of IT tools and addiction are leading to destructive behaviors affecting them in major ways. The purpose of this paper is to address the impact and implications of new IT on Middle Eastern youth, namely the way they are using these technologies and the consequences of that use. The instruments used were short essays and questionnaires which took into account Middle Eastern sensitive sub-cultural differences among the target population. While subjects were given ample time to write and submit their essays, the questionnaires were scheduled and administered on time by professionals. Reasons for the stated problems and recommendations to prevent them or deal with them are provided in the course of this paper. In addition, the paper indicates the need for a comparative and coherent body of research across cultures pertaining to the impact and implications of new IT on our youth.
Mahboub E. Hashem
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