Ok, so thanks to my ENGL 295 classmate Becca, I looked at an excellent article that touched on three ways to look at how adolescent bloggers define themselves: identity, language, and interactions with others. These kids are going to be my "Native" population. Now, today I looked a little at identity. In this article, bloggers often mesh online identity with offline identity. They can pretty much choose to be whoever they want on the internet, but most bloggers choose to stick with presenting the person they are in real life. So, there is a singular identity between the two places.
However, with my handy-dandy newly installed diigo toolbar, I was able to see "Alix's" (some random guy) sticky note. Alix thought that "the internet, and the new communication capabilities, help a person identify who they are. It encourages the creation of different and sometimes multiple identities." So there's another theory about what new technology does for identity.
There's also a third theory floating around among us. Two more classmates, Ben and Allison, shared the article Does Social Media Produce Groupthink? which asserts that the digital age hurts individual identity, and people instead tend to form group identity.
So what do you guys think? How does social networking/the internet affect identity? Does something like a blog promote a singular identity, while social networks like facebook lead to group identity? Does it depend on the person? Have you guys found any research on identity in whatever wonderful things you are studying?