Understanding participation styles within teen Virtual Worlds: A comparison of UK and Finnish users

Janet Ward, Johanna Gummerus

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceeding with ISSN or ISBNConference contribution with ISSN or ISBNpeer-review


Purpose Teens spend an increasing amount of time online particularly in teen-based virtual worlds such as Habbo Hotel™ & Stardoll™. Research to date has focused on identity and personal development highlighting issues such as bullying. This research aims to identify the participation styles of teen users and reflects the international nature of this market by undertaking a two-country comparison of users. Methodology A phenomenological approach is taken informed by Consumer Culture Theory. Wide ranging discovery interviews will yield rich data. UK and Finnish nationals in their home countries will carry out interviews. Findings The exploratory interviews will generate detailed narrative accounts of how teenagers engage with these virtual worlds and how they fit within their lived experience. The interviews are being undertaken during October/November 2013. Analysis and interpretation of the findings from these discovery interviews will be submitted in the full paper in February 2014. Originality Value Participation styles are identified in relation to both the socio-cultural context of the teenagers and the specific virtual world context. Comparing the UK and Finnish results will allow identification of participation styles and behaviours that may cross cultures and others that are cultural tied.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationChildren & Teen Consumption Conference, Edinburgh 2014
Number of pages5
Publication statusPublished - 2014
EventMultidisciplinary Perspectives on Child and Teen Consumption: CTC 2014 ‘Being, Becoming and Belonging’ - University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Duration: 9 Apr 201411 Apr 2014


ConferenceMultidisciplinary Perspectives on Child and Teen Consumption
Abbreviated titleCTC
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


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