MIGRANT CHILDREN’S SOCIAL EMBEDDEDNESS BY MODALITY SWITCHING THROUGH ONLINE VIDEO GAMES
Abstract: Online video games are a mass phenomenon in today’s life that have become a leisure activity for many people, including children. One feature of the online video games is meeting others with more common interests which can help children find social networks to share common values and interests. The present study provides on the social outcomes of online video games for migrant children, especially in terms of social interactions. In this regard, the transference of communication from online to offline setting that can lead to bridging online weak ties are often neglected. Such communication practice for migrant children can help them develop relationship and social embeddedness within the host community children. This study used a qualitative method to collected data from 10 migrant children living in Gothenburg, Sweden, who had recently moved to Sweden. The results showed that the migrant children interacted with the host community children via online video games, and this had a positive impact on their social embeddedness. The findings also showed that modality switching from online to offline setting increased children’s level of trust, and significantly helped them achieve a source of information and social embeddedness. Moreover, it was found that migrant gamers were generally embedded within the host community children. Finally, the study suggests that communication via online video games and transference of online interactions to offline setting can have positive social outcomes for migrant children.
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