This class is basically “Internet and society”, “critical Internet studies.” Not just communities, but also governance and policy.
Sociology is quite behind in technology stuff. Many 90s sociology PhDs have ended up in communications departments.
Monograph (book) is an important form of scholarly communication. All books we read are ethnographically, qualitatively deep. This year we’ll also be reading Data & Society, Shorenstein Center, etc reports.
Get to a mindset where the stuff we read is material to work with in preparation for our conversations
Come in with collectively lots to discuss
The preparation pays off
Seminar class; we’d be sitting at a long oval table in person
“I am a very slow reader, so I know I gotta bake in some extra time and I like to notate with my pen”
If we miss a class, lean on classmates, not just professor
Hope is that we’re connected with each other by the end of the course
Looking at gallery view feels like being a security guard
Separate conversation happening in chat during class can be cool
But let's set some conventions around it: collectively manage and moderate; bring up things aloud if relevant
Chat is a game changer for big lectures
Glimpse into the thought processes of the most engaged students
Multiple partial attentions… eh, not really
Audio: Mic on feels more engaged, but I get worried about making noise
Happy to give extensions w/ S^3 note, for religious holiday in advance, etc.
Pre-book in advance
We’re not “we want to make your paper better,” it’s “we want to make your writing better”
Book review (1000 words): 30%. Last sem one of the students got theirs published in a major venue. We’ll all be reviewing the same book: Phillips, This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things
Research paper (3000 words): 30%. Could be primary research (more for grad students) or just an extensive lit review
Final presentation: 15%
~5 grad students, ~10 undergrads
PDF proxy: no way to retain annotations
Thursday: dip our toes into Internet history
Next week: heaviest theory/conceptual week. Technological <> social is a circuit
Disinfo, QAnon, dark participation, Will Partin (UNC, Data & Society) visit
Moderation, TBD visit (possibly Twitch lawyer)
Youth and social media, especially Black youth
Week 13: TBD
We'll watch some documentaries, like Feels Good Man about the Pepe meme