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DOI: 10.33226/1231-7853.2023.8.1
JEL: D83, M31
Ewa Frąckiewicz ORCID: 0000-0001-9009-9435 , e-mail: 10.33226/1231-7853.2023.8.1

Digital inclusion vs. disconnection of social media – generation BB vs. generation Z

Access to Internet resources is a key prerequisite for taking advantage of the opportunities offered by the global web. It is also important to have the skills as well as a positive attitude to really benefit from their use. This represents an advantage in the phenomenon of digital inclusion, in which the older generations are systematically "catching up" with the younger ones. At the same time, however, a completely different trend is observed, consisting of limiting Internet use for reasons of security, protection of one's own health or the desire to build social relations in a traditional, nondigital way. The aim of this article is to compare the state of occurrence of both these phenomena in two age groups belonging to generations BB (baby boomers, 65–74 years old) and Z (16–29 years old), using the example of one of the most expansive network solutions – social media (SM). A statistical descriptive method and individual semi-structured interviews were used. The results show that although the differences in access to network services are steadily decreasing, they remain consistently high for SM. Z and BB use SM differently and in different ways – for generation Z they are a source of interesting content and a medium of communication, for BB – a source of information. Conclusions: the technological environment continues to differentiate between generations in terms of access, while the reasons for limiting the use of SM are two and they are common – time and usefulness of information. The research has the character of the first, preliminary research diagnosing the occurrence of the new phenomenon of disconnection of social media in Poland.

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Keywords: digital inclusion; disconnection of SM; BB generation; Z generation



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