A couple of times I’ve found it useful to use Marc Prensky’s concepts of the digital native and digital immigrant to make points in things I’ve written. As one reviewer noted of one of these pieces, these are helpful concepts but can’t be realized as absolute categories, which I agree with entirely. The adoption or uptake of digital technologies is far more complicated than seeing people as either ‘natives’ or ‘immigrants’.
Prensky’s work was originally situated in discussions about education, and in particular, perceived differences between teachers and students in terms of familiarity with and use of digital technology. Now, several years on, Henry Jenkins has an interesting article on the relevance and helpfulness of the terminology. See Confessions of an Aca/Fan: The Official Weblog of Henry Jenkins: Reconsidering Digital Immigrants….