The Insta-Dead: The Rhetoric of the Human Remains Trade on Instagram

Photos retrieved from a simple search of Instagram for “Human Skulls”, collected July 10, 2017    By Dr. Damien Huffer (left) and Dr. Shawn Graham (right) / 07.12.2017 Huffer: Postdoctoral Researcher, Stockholm University Graham: Associate Professor, Carleton University ‘The Insta-Dead: the rhetoric of the human remains trade on Instagram’ https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.546132 Issue 45 Abstract There is a[…]

The Ideology of Friendship in the Era of Facebook

The behavior of consistent liberals and consistent conservatives is the topic of a Pew study. (Photo: Oli Dunkley/Creative Commons) By Dr. Daniel Miller Professor of Anthropology University College of London 7:1 (2017) Abstract This article suggests that while anthropologists have developed a highly nuanced analysis of kinship and friendship under a more general comparative study[…]

Social Media also has a Dark History – Lessons can be Learned

By Dr. Nicholas Bowman / 06.27.2017 Associate Professor of Communication Studies West Virginia University It was in April 2016 that Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg announced that the social media platform was providing its nearly two billion users the opportunity to livestream content. The move was viewed as a natural extension of the platform’s primary goal: providing a space[…]

Why Social Media Apps Should be in Your Disaster Kit

Shutterstock    By Dr. Daniel P. Aldrich and Courtney M. Page / 09.08.2017 Aldrich: Professor of Political Science, Public Policy and Urban Affairs, Director Security and Resilience Program Page: PhD Candidate in Political Science Northeastern University With floodwaters at four feet and rising, a family in Houston, Texas abandoned their possessions and scrambled to their roof[…]

Far Beyond Crime-Ridden Depravity, Darknets are Key Strongholds of Freedom of Expression Online

By Dr. Roderick S. Graham / 01.25.2017 Associate Professor of Sociology Old Dominion University The internet is much more than just the publicly available, Google-able web services most online users frequent – and that’s good for free expression. Companies frequently create private networks to enable employees to use secure corporate servers, for example. And free[…]

Plato’s Allegory of the Cave and the Modern Digital World

Plato’s Allegory of the Cave describes “shadows” on the cave wall which we are taught from birth to perceive as real forms. These shadows are everything from false or hateful political/religious ideologies to scientific racism; just about anything that is bartered as truth and fact. Here are the parallels between his cave and the broadcast[…]

Misinformation on Social Media: Can Technology Save Us?

Sharing election hashtags: Dots are Twitter accounts; lines show retweeting; larger dots are retweeted more. Red dots are likely bots; blue ones are likely humans. / Clayton Davis By Dr. Filippo Menczer / 11.27.2016 Professor of Computer Science and Informatics Director of the Center for Complex Networks and Systems Research Indiana University, Bloomington If you[…]

How Should We Teach Our Kids to Use Digital Media?

Parents should be involved in their children’s use of electronic devices. / Shutterstock By Dr. Jenny Radesky / 10.21.2016 Associate Professor of Pediatrics University of Michigan Any time a new technology is introduced, it disrupts values, routines and behaviors. This goes back well before the printing press replaced oral histories or the telephone replaced face-to-face[…]

How Twitter Gives Scientists a Window in Human Happiness and Health

Each tweet that relays an emotion, opinion, or idea joins millions of others. “Globe” via Shutterstock By Dr. Lewis Mitchell / 07.13.2016 Lecturer in Applied Mathematics University of Adelaide Since its public launch 10 years ago, Twitter has been used as a social networking platform among friends, an instant-messaging service for smartphone users, and a[…]

Social Media is Changing Our Digital News Habits – But to Varying Degrees in US and UK

Same news, different medium? Elvin   By Dr. David Levy (left) and Dr. Damian Radcliffe (right) / 06.14.2016 Levy:  Director of the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism, University of Oxford Radcliffe:  Professor of Journalism, University of Oregon Digital technology has dramatically reshaped the news and media industries in the past decade. We’ve left[…]

Mapping the Structure of the Archaeological Web

(NOTE: Image not included in original article.) By Dr. Shawn Graham Professor or Historical Methods Carleton University Originally published in Internet Archaeology as Graham, S. (2015). Mapping the Structure of the Archaeological Web, Internet Archaeology 39. https://doi.org/10.11141/ia.39.1 39:1 (2015) Summary What is the context of our archaeological blogging? When we blog, are we merely shouting into the[…]

Russian Officials Make Plans for an Autonomous, State-Controlled Internet

A new draft bill lays the groundwork for an autonomous RuNet. Image from Wikipedia By Tetyana Lokot / 05.27.2016 Russian officials at the Communications Ministry are preparing the groundwork for a Russian Internet that would be fully controlled by the state. A new draft bill, tentatively titled “On the Autonomous Internet System,” would enable government[…]

Finding Solitude in an Era of Perpetual Contact

Don’t neglect to unplug and be actually alone. Woman on beach via shutterstock.com By Dr. Scott Campbell Professor of Telecommunications University of Michigan Being alone has many benefits. It grants freedom in thought and action. It boosts creativity. It offers a terrain for the imagination to roam. Solitude also enriches our connections with others by[…]

Social Media as Masochism

By Rob Horning / 05.15.2016 When I read anthropologist Natasha Dow Schüll’s book on gambling, Addiction by Design, it started me thinking of how machine gambling works as an analogue for social media: Both facilitate an escapism through engagement, an immersion in immediate risk-taking routines that obscures the larger existential crises. (A lot more about that in this post.)[…]

Social Media Activism at the Margins: Managing Visibility, Voice and Vitality Affects

theodysseyonline.com By Dr. Anthony McCosker Professor of Media and Communications Swinburne University of Technology Social Media+Society 1(2), July-Dec. 2015 Abstract This article is concerned with social media activism at the margins and deals with the problem of managing visibility and voice and the role of affect in the emergence of contested publics over time. While[…]

Communicating Meaning Online: A Digital Expression of Theory of Mind

© Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 By Krystal D’Costa Anthropologist The growth of email, instant messaging, texting, and various other digitally-mediated communicative tools (DMC) has been rapid and pervasive. The majority of people today are comfortable enough to use these communicative tools on a daily basis, particularly among younger generations. DMC appears to be a preferred[…]