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  • 1.
    Sjöberg, Magdalena
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Lindgren, Simon
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Challenging the roles of “skilled” professionals and “risky” young mothers: peer support, expertise, and relational patterns in Facebook groups2017In: Journal of technology in human services, ISSN 1522-8835, E-ISSN 1522-8991, Vol. 35, no 3, p. 247-270Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Today, many countries spend a great deal of money and effort on programs for expert-guided parenting support to be carried out in face-to-face groups. One goal of such support is to target, help, and educate “risky” groups of parents, such as young parents. It is striking, however, that young parents have a conspicuously low degree of participation in this type of parenting support. Drawing on the assumption that many young parents go online to seek, give, and receive peer parenting support, this paper presents a case study of activities within three Facebook groups. Using a combination of social network analysis, online ethnography, and interviews, we analyze how social network relationships and discussions differ depending on whether the analyzed Facebook group in question is administrated by professionals or peers, what the role of professional experts is, and how young parents might use social media to take control of their own support needs. Our results indicate that some of the affordances provided by Facebook might contribute to a challenging of the roles of “skilled” professionals versus “risky” young parents.

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