Identity

Students: Panic Over Online Privacy, Identity is Overblown

Wednesday, August 04, 2010 Comment facebook homepage reflected in sunglasses

Blogger Chris Sinclair attends the University of California, Irvine, and brings a youth perspective to DMLcentral. Going on the Internet and reading blogs these days I feel like all I see are warnings about the evils of online networking, fleshing out a plethora of controversies involving social media sites. I find many of these articles boring and somewhat repetitive in their chastisement of Facebook and other sites and the Internet in general for suddenly making all of our “private” information “available.” How is this information “private” if a person has willingly made it public to a


Emergent Networks: Fotologs as Performances of the Self

Monday, May 24, 2010 Comment black and white photo of girls shadows

Raquel Recuero, a Brazilian professor, is an Internet culture researcher in South America. Fotolog, a photo-sharing site, grew quickly in South America, becoming one of the most popular social networking services in Chile, Brazil and other countries. Fotologs became interesting narratives of everyday life, carefully constructed by users to share the impressions they wanted to display for their audience. They became identity performances. A Gothic user I interviewed, for example, would only publish pictures in black and white, always accompanied by Gothic band lyrics. He said it was a way to “make a statement about himself.”


Social Media in South America: Orkut & Brazil

Friday, November 13, 2009 Comment Orkut banner Brazil

To start my participation here in DMLcentral, I want to write about social media outside the U.S., specifically in South America. Let’s take the case of Orkut in Brazil, an interesting and relatively-unknown subject that I’ve researched and followed closely for years. Orkut is very much a cultural phenomenon in Brazil. Although Brazilians had experience with other social networking sites (Fotolog, for example, was very popular among young Brazilians in 2003 and 2004, before Orkut appeared), Orkut caused a revolution in Internet access in Brazil.  As Orkut grew quickly in Brazil starting in 2004, it became


The Rhetoric of MySpace vs. Facebook

Monday, October 26, 2009 Comment myspace is for losers graffiti on building

From Eszter Hargittai’s scholarship to more recent work by marketing analytics firms, we know that race and socio-economic status shape MySpace and Facebook usage. Yet, it is the rhetoric used by participants that highlights how these distinctions play out.  In an upcoming paper entitled “White Flight in Networked Publics?” (to be published in Lisa Nakamura and Peter Chow-White’s upcoming anthology on Race and Digital Technology), I map out the language used by teenagers – and, to a lesser degree, adults – to explain the divisions between MySpace and Facebook.   When one of the teens that I