TEEN
12/19/2013 11:00 am ET Updated Feb 24, 2014

Are You A Digital Native? (VIDEO)

You grew up surrounded by technology. Dial-up tones from your parents' computer served as an informal alarm clock, a 30-minute Game Boy session always accompanied your after school snack of choice and you remember when you got your first cell phone -- not when they first came out. You're also fairly certain the last time your class had to help a teacher log into their email account was 2007.

Are you, then, a digital native? You never moved here, never got your technological passport stamped with typewriter ink. You were born into a world where Gates indicated more than something you walked through, where Jobs referred to something you could aspire to, but never apply for. Hyperlinks and other embeddable buttons have always made as much sense to you as the ones sewn on a letterman jacket.

These are all-too-common assumptions, and Mike Rugnetta talks more about the meaning of "digital native" in his recent PBS Idea Channel video. He also explains why technological divides are not necessarily the same as generational divides, and there may be danger in assuming that they are.

"No one is born a native speaker of digital in the same way that no one is born a native speaker of any language. Through context, immersion and practice, they learn. But language is everywhere, and though it may seem as though they are, computers aren't... They are a privilege that not everyone has access too," says Rugnetta.

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