Youth Voices, as Akward as its Users.

Apr 2, 2009

Youth Voices is a blogging site that is geared toward a very young audience: from teens to preteens. This makes the site's user interface a bit complicated to figure out for technology immigrants. The user interface requires a mastery of terms because the request that a user would like to make is not always made using vocabulary that a person would normally use. For example, just to be able to blog on this site I had to be able to realize that disscusion meant blog. I am a technology native though, so this wasn't to great a task for me, but someone who wasn't born with computers at their fingertips might be intimidated by this and for this reason, Youth Voices is not user friendly for older generations.

Once the commands on the menu bars are understood, youth voices becomes quite easy to navigate. Blogs are easy to check, groups are easy to join, and then there is an ample supply of commands that will rarely be used. Such as Audio and assignment. A helpful search bar allows the user to search for key words, so that the user can read a blog about a topic they are interested in, and then they can easily comment on the blog.

Youth voices consists of multiple panels with poorly named task options. The ability to create groups is very useful and easily done. Youth voices makes groupware easy because a group can blog on a draft of something together, and incorperate those blog revisions into the master disscusion. The search engine allows the reader to read a blog they like and conect with other students who are interested in the same thing the user is interested in. Thus, interaction is an easy process on youth voices, and this is perhaps the most useful feature of the site. This is especially because youth voices allows the user to interact with his or her own audience.

In light of theses aspects I say kids should stick to facebook because this site just does not feel right, even to technology natives.