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Call for Papers − Digital Material/ism: How Materiality shapes Digital Culture and

Social Interaction
First Issue of Digital Culture & Society

Abstract deadline: February 1, 2015
The idea of a society, in which everyday smart objects are equipped with digital logic and sensor
technologies, is currently taking shape. Devices connected as learning machines to the “Internet
of Things” necessitate further research on issues related to digital media and their materiality. In
this context, media, culture and social theories, dealing with the materiality of digital technology,
have gained increasing relevance.
Investigations of digital material have given rise to a wide range of (new) research questions,
approaches, and issues. From the early 2000s onwards, we can identify two major strands of
research that developed: (1) from the technological and material conditions of hardware and
software towards (2) the social/political/economic/legal infrastructures and power relations of
proprietary networks and platforms. The eventual establishment of research fields such as
software studies, critical code studies, media archaeology and the notion of the post-digital −
represented by scholars such as David Berry, Wendy Chun, Alexander Galloway, Mark Hansen,
Katherine Hayles, Friedrich Kittler, Lev Manovich, William Mitchell, Anna Munster, Adrian
Mackenzie, Jussi Parikka, Eugene Thacker, and others, − can also be understood as indicators of
an institutionalisation of ‘media-materialistic’ research. For the first issue “Digital Material/ism”,
the newly founded Digital Culture & Society journal calls for further methodological and
theoretical reflection on issues of digital materiality and digital materialism.
Approaches may be rooted in (digital) media and cultural studies, as well as social sciences.
Interdisciplinary contributions, for example, those from science and technology studies, are
likewise welcome.
Paper proposals may relate to, but are not limited to, the following topics:
- the internet of things, smart objects and ambient intelligence
- augmented environments
- wearables (and augmented reality)
- hardware studies and Open Hardware
- hacker, Maker and DIY Culture
- post-digital media research
- media ecologies and e-waste
- agency of assemblages
We invite submissions, which may react to, and expand on to the following questions of “Digital

as well as spaces and contexts of smart objects. we are interested in the practical relevance of the materiality of recording.’ or ‘historical-material’ conditions of data networks? Following Matthew Kirschenbaum’s (2008) conception of “formal materiality” as “the imposition of multiple relational computational states on a data set or digital object” (Ibid. such as “forensic materialism” as suggested by Kirschenbaum (2008).at Annika Richterich − a. and surveillance of the physical environment? 2.g. storing and processing (alongside the technical modelling of storage. digital objects. how was the notion of materiality developed with regard to digital media? Moreover. and question epistemological assumptions. Conceptual/theoretical reflection We invite papers that address key notions in the discussion of digital materiality.Digital Culture & Society ⎟ Call for Papers “Digital Material/ism” 1. whether they are invited to submit a full paper. wearable computing devices.richterich@maastrichtuniversity. Methodological reflection We invite contributions that address methodological issues of approaches focused on digital media materiality. which only entered the discussion of digital media studies in the 2000s. “Software as a historical knowledge base”: it has its own history and does not only follow technological norms and 2 . Full papers are due on: May 1. What are the methodological implications of such technological developments? What ethical challenges do researchers face.g. “Materiality” is a crucial term. e. institutional and cultural settings. but also yields social. 2008) Historically. e. p. related to the data enabled by new digital media technology and their material features? 3. How do materialistic positions tacitly use metaphors of clinical or administrative control to assure the relevance and societal benefits of their devices? How is the notion of ‘smart/ness’ used in order to promote new forms of technological interactions with. we subsequently consider the results of Matthew Fuller’s (2003. Thereby.g. 2015 Authors will be notified by February 16. or beacons. Articles may examine usage and production. 2015. Field Research and Case Studies We invite papers on socio-technological developments related to digital media materiality. discrete data and metadata-guided processing operations). 100 words) are due on: February 1. in which philosophical traditions do the key representatives of “Digital Materialism” place themselves? In what ways do they assume canonical models when examining the ‘transcendental. 300 words) and a short biographical note (max. Deadlines and contact information Initial abstracts (max. Contributions may be based on (empirical) case studies.reichert@univie. 12). in a metaphorical sense (see Boomen 2014) or as governmental alignment. 2015 Please send the abstracts and full papers to: Ramón Reichert – ramon. e. They may likewise address discourses of truth and evidence related to digital media materialism.’ ‘empirical.

Kirschenbaum. 85-93. Cambridge: The MIT Press. (2003) Twisty Little Passages: An Approach to Interactive Fiction. pp. Cambridge: MIT Press. 3 . M. Montfort. Cambridge: MIT Press. (2008) Software Studies. Amsterdam. Harvard: Harvard University Press. Fuller. A Lexicon. M.Digital Culture & Society ⎟ Call for Papers “Digital Material/ism” References Boomen. Institute of Network Cultures. (2008) Mechanisms: New Media and the Forensic Imagination. B. Latour. van den (2014) Transcoding the Digital: How Metaphors Matter in New Media. (1987) Science in Action: How to Follow Scientists and Engineers through Society. N. M.

Emphasising the relevance of new practices and technology appropriation for theory as well as methodology debates. 4 . Gamification. “In Conversation with . where appropriate. platforms and applications reconfigure daily lives and practices. theory. Surveillance and Privacy. and how it conversely influences the development of digital technology itself. It invites reflection on how culture unfolds through the use of digital technology.. international journal. but would like to initiate a discussion concerning their research material or methodological insights. anthropology. and Digital Cartography. The editors aim to include a range of articles that involve theoretical and/or methodological debates.Digital Culture & Society ⎟ About the Journal About the Journal: Digital Culture & Society Digital Culture & Society is a refereed. Each issue consists of 3 main sections: 1. the journal also encourages empirical investigations. The journal’s structure reflects the editors’ aim to spark and incorporate the discourse on digital media practices. history and methodologies. This however. The journal is a research platform for those who are interested in the interdisciplinary field of digital media studies. and new topics will continuously supplement these themes due to the dynamic of the research field. sociology. Topics are specified in the respective call for papers. Big Data. cultural studies. The newly established journal provides a publication environment for interdisciplinary research approaches. Extimacy. Sensory Ethnography. media/art history and information science. inspiring engagement with current debates in theory and/or methodological issues. “Entering the Field” is dedicated to the presentation of empirical work and potential research fields in digital media studies. or input related to material culture studies. science and technology studies. actor-network theory. Quantified Self. The thematic section of each issue is dedicated to an overarching topic. the overall topic of the published work is integrated and located within the wider frame of the journal’s emphasis on digital culture and society. in the light of authors’ own empirical investigations. contemporary theory developments and methodological innovation in digital media studies. It involves topics such as New Materialism. Thereby. critical code studies and software studies. 2.. It offers a forum for critical analysis and inquiries into digital media theory. is a non-exhaustive list.” presents dialogues between the editors and authors of recently published works in the field of digital media studies. fostering discussion about the ways in which digital technologies. which will be examined through interdisciplinary contributions. such as research by design and media archaeology. 3. game studies. It welcomes contributions addressing the relevance of interventional approaches. The journal’s goal is to create a crossdisciplinary repository on the interconnection between research fields such as media studies. The editors have created this section to provide a platform for researchers who are not able to provide a full-fledged paper yet. gender studies. Digital Culture & Society seeks contributions that display a clear.

Early stage research might be suggested for the section “Entering the Field.000 words in length for the main section.reichert@univie. language editing may be provided. Being based in Europe.000-8.500 words. Pablo Abend. Authors are asked to submit a short biographical note indicating their institutional affiliation. Karin Wenz. In cases where the reviewers are convinced of a paper’s academic quality. Maastricht University (NL) For further information feel free to contact: Ramón Reichert − ramon. Annika Richterich. etc. The editorial board is an international network of researchers from Austria. formatting. Maastricht University (NL). The editors will select abstracts. with particular regard to the inclusion of non-native English speakers. Mathias Fuchs. the Netherlands and Germany: Ramón Reichert. University of Cologne (GER). The publisher is based in Germany and focuses on interdisciplinary research in media studies.transcript-verlag. Submission guidelines The initial abstracts should be 300 words in length. The publisher will provide final although the main argument may be less developed than in the case of the papers for section Annika Richterich − a.). The full papers will be peer-reviewed and the authors will receive the feedback of the reviewers for a final revision of their The journal addresses an international audience and will involve authors from diverse disciplinary and national backgrounds. and authors will then receive an invitation for the submission of a full paper. Visit: http://www. University of Vienna (AT). Leuphana University Lüneburg (GER).Digital Culture & Society ⎟ About the Journal Submission procedure Initial submissions should be abstracts only.” It should show a relation to the CfP. Information about the publisher Digital Culture & Society will be issued as a printed journal and distributed online by transcript. The editors invite contributions which react to the topic/s suggested in the respective call for papers. The editors likewise wish to foster an inclusive publication 5 . but raise concerns related to its style or grammar.richterich@maastrichtuniversity. A peer review procedure will ensure the quality of publications. Authors who are invited to submit a full paper will receive further information on the journal’s guidelines (citation. it aims at encouraging dialogue referring to European perspectives on digital media theory and research. cultural studies and media/art history. Invited full paper submissions should be 6. Submissions to “Entering the Field” should be no longer than 2.