Diverse everyday information practices in Australian households

Vivienne Waller

Abstract


Qualitative research into the everyday information-seeking practices of eight diverse households in the city of Melbourne, Australia permitted insights into the variability in dynamics around information practices. The current study combines an information practice approach to information-seeking with finer detail on use of the Internet. Rather than treat the Internet as a monolithic entity, this study looks separately at the use of more recent Internet technologies such as social media and Wikipedia. The study examines the type of information that people seek, the ways in which they stay informed and their engagement with a range of information resources. In particular, the study illustrates the enormous disparity in the level of information resources available to participants. It also illustrates the extent to which use of the search engine, Google, has become naturalised within the everyday information practices of some Internet users in Australia. This study indicates that public libraries still have particular importance for more disadvantaged members of the population.

Keywords


information practices; search engine use; information seeking

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ISSN 1756-1086 (Online)