Is David White right and is Twitter still a thing?

Welcome to my space for the reflections on topic 1 – Online participation and digital literacies.

Today I watched these videos and was mind blown by the approach:

David White: Visitors and residents (jiscnetskills, 2014a)
David White: Visitors and residents – Credibility (jiscnetskills, 2014b)
I was stunned, that I haven’t heard about the “Visitor and Resident concept” before. I mean, eight years since it has been posted and only now, I’m aware of this. Thanks to myself, I signed up for the course. I was impressed.
You can learn to navigate the digital world. There are always new programs, apps or software update coming. The Internet is in a constant state of change. The question is, can or do you want to keep up with this constant change? Does one have the time and resources to follow this change? If so, it doesn’t matter what year you were born or whether you grew up with the smartphone. David White uses the Visitor and Resident concept to challenge the “Digital Native and Immigrants” idea by Marc Prensky. (Prensky, 2001a), (Prensky, 2001b).
Again, I realized myself, I like the concept of “digital natives”. This concept corresponds to my pigeonhole system in my head. Which is neither good nor bad, but simpler for me. With David White concept, I think more about how I behave on the Internet. What do I use for what purpose, personal or professional? Making my own Visitors and Residents map on Padlet(Padlet, n.d.) took some time. I am aware that if I make another map like this in six months, it will look very different.

So, what does it take to keep up with constant change on the Internet? The answer is obvious: digital literacy. Again, the ONL course gives valuable resources which I was not aware of. Firstly (Developing Digital Literacies, n.d.) and secondly (TEDx Talks, 2012).

When I think back to the two weeks with topic 1, I am glad about the many new food for thought. The exchange in my EduNauts group – formerly known as PBL 06 – is super. I find it nice to hear the different opinions from my group members and to have lively discussions. Time goes by way too fast and topic 2 is already here. Please fasten your seatbelts, it will continue immediately.




Developing digital literacies. (n.d.). Jisc. Retrieved 22 June 2018, from

jiscnetskills. (2014a, March 10). Visitors and Residents.

jiscnetskills. (2014b, March 10). Visitors and Residents: Credibility.

Prensky, M. (2001a). Digital Natives, Digital Immigrants Part 1. On the Horizon, 9(5), 1–6.

Prensky, M. (2001b). Digital Natives, Digital Immigrants Part 2: Do They Really Think Differently? On the Horizon, 9(6), 1–6.

TEDx Talks. (2012, March 22). The essential elements of digital literacies: Doug Belshaw at TEDxWarwick.

5 responses to “Is David White right and is Twitter still a thing?”

  1. Hi Stephanie,
    you are right: it’s about time that we re-think the old native-immogrant concept, because this is somehow simply linear, at least to me. It relies on time only, your date of birth. It can’t be a mirror of all those links to time AND space AND content AND people… The visitor-resident-idea is way more of a complex phenomenon. Don’t you think?

    • Hello Miriam
      Yes, I agree with you on that. The visitor-stay idea is much more complex and thus of course not so easy to formulate. It needs an engagement with it. Time and capacity is once again the magic word here. I am really glad that the Kick-off for this has been given here in the course.

  2. Hi Stefanie,

    I very much agree that it’s easy to feel infowhelmed when thinking of the fast-paced development of the digital tools and apps of all sorts. David White’s visitor-resident continuum is useful to raise awareness of our different digital literacy skills as visitors and residents, which will change over time. Quite interesting!
    As for the concept of ‘digital native’, I noticed on different occasions that there are common misconceptions regarding age, which I admittedly shared to some extent as well. For example, I remember an elderly gentleman being admired by a young follower (context YouTube) for his IT skills and knowledge in digital literacies. It’s worthwhile knowing that this elderly man has a background in aerospace engineering and also started a very successful online shop in the late 90s. Apparently, he frequently received similar admiration from many young people and clients with mixed feelings. His brief response was: ‘Well, thanks – but remember, I AM the internet!’

    Certainly a digital resident with great confidence in his own ways 🙂

  3. Hello Stafanie

    Thank you for your post and for sharing your thoughts with us. To be honest, I didn’t know about the “Visitor and Resident concept” either. But now that I know about it, I am also becoming more aware of online media. I often think about whether I’m looking at web/social media content from the point of view of my private interests or professionally. And where / how I will use this content / the newly gained knowledge.
    Somehow it gives me the feeling that I am now more aware of the online world and that makes me feel good 🙂

    Best wishes,

  4. Hi Stefanie,
    I find your reflection quite interesting. You stated the concept of “Digital Native and Immigrants” by Marc Prensky which is broadly known. We learned on our university that the concept is not scientifically founded. And in conversations with other people I often find out that it does not fit reality.

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