From the above video (White, D. 2013), Mr Dave White described digital visitors as those who ‘leave no trace’. On the flipside, digital residents are those who ‘live’ online.
Digital visitors are people who use the net as an aid in achieving certain goals. Basically, these visitors search for what they need from the net, such as researching for articles. Once they are done with it, they would leave without leaving any trail. They are more like the users than members of the web (White, D & Cornu, A.L. 2011).
For instance, I would research on articles and journals through search engine on the web such as Google Scholars. It acts as a tool in helping me to achieve my goal of increasing my knowledge as well as providing evidences to my reports. Once I am done with my researches, I logged off without leaving any trace of my profile in the net.
On the other hand, digital residents are those who spend most of their time online. They communicate with their friends and colleagues online. They take the net as a place where they can express their opinions, form relationships as well as creating an identity (White, D, et al. 2012). Unlike digital visitors, residents leave their footprints in the net. They are those who have an account in social media networks such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr. These residents also use the services provided in the net such as banking, shopping, searching for information and more, reason being that they are convenient.
What I am doing currently — writing a blog post and posting it — is an example of a digital resident.
Besides that, I have an account in social media network such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and I would update it frequently to create my presence in the web. I would also use online services such as internet banking as well as shopping online as it grants me with the convenience. Unlike digital visitors, even when I logged off from my accounts, there will still be traces of my digital profile in the net.
Both digital visitor and resident are not exactly mutually exclusive. One can be both a digital visitor as well as digital resident. You can use the net as an aid in your academic such as researching for more information and also utilising it to extend the social relationship through expressing opinions or communicating with others through the net.
White, D. (2008) Not ‘Natives’ & ‘Immigrants’ but ‘Visitors’ & ‘Residents’. Tall Blog. University of Oxford. [Accessed: 27th November 2014]
White, D. (2013). Visitors and Residents. YouTube Video. [Accessed: 27th November 2014]
White, D & Cornu, A.L. (2011). Visitors and Residents: A new typology for online engagement. First Monday, 16(9).[Accessed: 27th November 2014]
White, D, et al. (2012). Digital Visitors and Residents. Progress Report. JISC, University of Oxford, OCLC, University of North Carolina. [Accessed: 27th November 2014]
White, D, et al. (2014). Evaluating Digital Services: a Visitors and Residents approach. JISCinfoKit. [Accessed: 27th November 2014]