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digc101 lecture 2

web 2.0
• glossary of terms:
• wikis are co-created content on the web
such as wikipedia

• web 2.0 means the second generation

of the World Wide Web

• blogs are usually created by one

person--online diaries or articles

• participatory democracy
• social networking sites e.g. facebook
• folksonomy e.g. tagging through
delicious--creating a ranking of sites

• collective intelligence used in different

ways--can mean web creations that are
contributed to by a number of people
such as fan sites
• tagging--using an application such as
delicious to tag a site and collect that
information into another site--or tagging
in facebook to draw attention to a photo

• online groups
• semiotics. The term “semiotics” literally
means the science of signs. It is
associated with the paradigm of
structuralism. Signs are any text, mark,
utterance or artefact, so basically
everything is a sign. A cat itself is a
sign, and a picture of a cat is a sign.
• This course focuses more on personal
uses of the web than the global
implications, which we address more in
digc202. Personal or social uses of the
net may still have various layers of
political meaning in the representations
or self-representations chosen, or the
choice to participate or not participate in
on and offline campaigns for social or
political change.
• We do however address the issues of
citizen journalism and wikis. The current
controversial headlines about the
wikileaks army scandal is here:

internet to publicize accusations of
corruption or cover-ups by traditional
media sources that are often privately

• Citizen journalism is also something

called the blogosphere—which is a term
used for the collection of blogs on the
net, some video blogs, some writing

• The public sphere and the possibility or

• One of the issues of contention in new
media scholarship is the uses and
effectiveness (or ineffectiveness) of
blogs or citizen journalism in
manipulating or influencing public
• Other issues that we will be addressing
in this course is social networking and
the politics of self presentation and

• Research ethics and methods for

research into digital cultures—failures ,
false starts, and online ethnographies.

• would eventually produce a

Shakespeare by accident—and if a
hundred monkeys were put in a room
with a computer,
• Folksomony and collective intelligence
arguments, and the counter argument
by Andrew Keane—if a hundred
monkeys were put in a room with a type
writer they they would eventually
produce Wikipedia or any other kind of
„collective intelligence.‟
• Henry Jenkins has a more positive take
on the concept of collective intelligence
on the internet
• Jenkins draws on Pierre Levy‟s concept
of collective intelligence to argue that
internet communities such as fan
communities allow a greater degree
and specificity of shared knowledge
than a single person can achieve.
Jenkins on Levy

• “His book might best be read as a form

of critical utopianism framing a vision
for the future ('an achievable utopia'),
offering an ethical yardstick for
contemporary developments. Levy
explores how the 'deterritorialization' of
knowledge, brought about by the ability
of the net and the web to facilitate rapid
many-to-many communication,
• might enable broader participation in
decision-making, exchange of
information.” in Jenkins).
• Levy draws a productive distinction new
modes of citizenship and community,
and the reciprocal between organic
social groups (families, clans, tribes),
organized social groups (nations,
institutions, religions, and corporations)
and self-organized groups (such as the
virtual communities of the web).
• He links the emergence of the new
knowledge on communication space to
the breakdown of geographic
constraints, of the declining loyalty of
individuals to organized offline groups
in civil society.
• of the diminished power of nation-states
to command the exclusive loyalty of
their citizens. The new knowledge
communities will be voluntary,
temporary, and tactical affiliations,
defined through common intellectual
enterprises and emotional investments.
• Members may shift from one
community to another as their interests
and needs change and they may
belong to more than one community at
the same
• they are held together through the mutual production and
reciprocal exchange of knowledge.” (Jenkins)
other ways of using the term “collective

• There are other ways of using the term

“collective intelligence.” Google use it to
justify the the way that they refine and
rank search results, so that the site with
the most number of hits ranks highly.
• It is also used in regard to folksonomy
practices such as public tagging and
bookmarking through applications such
• delicious. These are all parts of web 2.0
• Web 2.0 is user-generated culture,
participatory media. The web has been
transformed from web 1, which was a
static collection of text and multimedia,
to a generation of web content, services
and design ordered around user-driven
applications, social networking sites
and the means for producing and
disseminating information in a dynamic
many-to-many context.
• This week‟s reading by Mark
Warschauer and Douglas Grimes
(2007) argues that web 2.0 has created
new notions of authorship, audience,
and artefact.
• Next week, we will look at research
methods and research ethics involved
in studying internet forums, blogs and
• In week 4, we will look at gender in blogs and social
media, and explore the idea of activism or anti-
activism in gendered social media use.
• In week 5, we will explore the difference
between social network sites that
reinforce existing social networks, and
those that promote new connections
and communities.
• In week 6, we will look at youtube as a
site that promotes new flows of visual
communication. In the lecture, we will
explore some of the theories
surrounding not just youtube use, and
the use of self-presentational media
and social networks in reinforcing or
creating social bonds.
• In the tutes the following week, we will
bring as many phones, videos and
laptops to class as we can—including
booking some from cedir—to take
videos of ourselves or our avatars to
upload onto youtube sites.
• In the week 7 lecture, we will discuss
folksonomy and participation.
Folksonomy is a form of cultural
production that publicly and collectively
classifies information. Tagging and
del.icious booking, and collective
intelligence of google searches can be
considered to be forms of folksonomy.
This week, we will also explore in more
depth the notion of the online public
• In the lecture in week 10, we will look at
punks, hackers, geeks, fans, and the
culture wars over intellectual property.
We will also be revising for the quiz for
the tutorial in week 13.
• In the lecture in week 9, we will
investigate google and some of the
scholarship surrounding google earth
and the perception of spatial issues and
• Katie Freund will guest lecture in weeks
11 and 12, on Second Life and
exploring online worlds.

• In the week 13 lecture there will be an

opportunity to reflect on and critique
course content. Some of the tutorials
are unfortunately scheduled before the
lecture, so there will be no quiz hints
given in this lecture, so that noone in
any tute is disadvantaged. There will be
quiz hints given out in many of the other
• The reading for this week, by Mark
Warschauer and Douglas Grimes
(2007, p.13) argues that the interactions
possible on web 2.0 has the potential to
transform the way that people interact
with each other and technology
• They use the phrase “emergent
semiotics” to describe the new ways
that meaning is made in participatory
media such as wikis and social
• They also use it to describe the
collective intelligence of google ranking
or the home page of youtube that
highlights the most popular searchers
or videos.
• “Our reference to emergent semiotics in
the title of this article was purposefully
ambiguous. On the one hand, it refers
to the emergence of broad new forms of
meaning making, through, for example,
blogs, wikis, and social networking, that
will force us to rethink concepts of
„copyright, identity, aesthetics,
rhetoric‟s, government, privacy ..[and]
ourselves” (Wesch, 2007, 13)
• “On the other hand, emergent semiotics
refers to the way that the meaning of a
particular page or site may only emerge
through automated filtering and
synthesis of the input of many people”
(Warschauer and Grimes 2007 13).
• For example, what shows up on the
home page of Digg, del.icio. us,
YouTube, or Google News [..] is
determined not by conscious editorial
decisions of an individual or group, but
rather by the clicks of thousands of
people around the world.” (Warschauer
and Grimes 2007, P13).
• authorship. Warschauer and Grimes
(2007 3) argue that the concept of
authorship first emerged from a model
of language that understood meaning to
be produced through each element of
language as well as by the “authority
granted by institutions, such as the
Church or the Academy, to produce
authorized versions” (Warschauer and
Grimes 2007, p.3).
• Structuralism is associated with
semiotics. Poststructuralism is critical of
semiotics, and poststructuralists argue
that meaning is not contained in a
single text, utterance, or sign, but is
instead multiple. It also argues that the
idea of the author having authority over
the meaning of a text is dead.
• Poststructualism is seen in the later
work of Roland Barthes, as well as
Jacques Derrida and many others such
as Lyotard. Roland Barthes wrote the
piece “the death of the author,” which
argues that the author is no longer
regarded as the true authority or creator
of meaning.
• Warschauer and Grimes (2007 16)
argue that social network sites “allow
the emergence of symbolic artifacts in
ways that blur the original authors‟
intents and the boundaries between
language and other signs, match a
poststructural perspective”
• Warschauer and Grimes (2007 9)
describe blogs as a bridging tool for
developing academic literacies, and I
have designed the assessments in this
course to build on, recognize, and
respect existing student skills and
knowledge rather than trying to force
them into a high academic style
• According to Warschauer and Grimes
(2007) “Although the contrasts between
Web 2,0 and Web 1.0 are striking, from
a broader historical perspective they
represent a continuation of much older
trends from plain text to multimedia,
• from static to dynamic content--print
media meant that books tended not to
change except through different
editions--web means content changes
all the time--could be considered to be
• from authorship by an educated elite to
mass authorship--so wikis and blogs
and online forums change the nature of
authorship and authorized versions
• from high costs of entry into the public
sphere to low ones.” According to
Jurgen Habermas, the public sphere is
not just the public domain, it is a space
that is public that allows deliberation
and publications of issues that engage
with the state, but is generally outside
state control.
• Habermas (1989) did not think that the
internet opened a space for deliberation
because it was commercialized--the
same as most other media outlets. But
Mark Poster (1997) and Warshacer and
Grimers (2007) argue that the internet
does offer a space for deliberation in
• Cohen N 2008 Gendering Facebook:
Privacy and Commodification, Journal
of Feminist Media Studies, vol 8 issue
2, pp.210-214.

• Dibbell J 2001, „A Rape in Cyberspace;

or How an Evil Clown, a Hiatian
Trickster Spirit, Two Wizards, and a
Cast of Dozens Turned a Database into
a Society,‟ in Reading Digital Culture,
ed D Trend, Blackwell, Malden, Mass,
pp. 199-213.
• Goldsmith, J & Wu, T 2006, Who
Controlsthe Internet? Illusions of a
Borderless World, Oxford University
Press, New York.

• Habermas Jurgen 1989, The Structural

Transformation of the Public Sphere:
An Inquiry into a Category of Bourgeois
Society, trans Thomas Burger, Polity
• Jenkins H Interactive Audiences The
Collective Intelligence of Media Fans,
• Keen A 2007 The Cult of the Amateur:
How Today‟s Internet Culture is Killing
our Culture and Assaulting our
Economy, Nicolas Braley Publishing,

• Reid E, 1999, „Hierarchy and Power:

Social Control in Cyberspace,‟ in
Communities in Cyberspace, eds M
Smith and P Kollock, Routledge,
London, pp. 107-133.
• Poster, Mark1995 Cyberdemocracy:
The Internet and the Public Sphere,

• Postill, John 2008 „Localizing the

Internet: Beyond Communities and
Networks,‟ New Media and Society, 10,
• Warschauer, Mark and Grimes,
Douglas (2007) Audience, Authorship
and Artefact: The Emergent Semiotics
of Web 2.0, Annual Review of Applied
Linguistics, vol 27, pp.1-23.