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Understanding Digital Culture

Understanding Digital Culture

Second Edition

March 2020 | 344 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
This is not simply a book about ‘internet studies’.

It is a book that considers many wider forms of digital culture, including mobile technologies, surveillance, algorithms, ambient intelligence, gaming, big data and technological bodies (to name a few) in order to explore how digital technology - in a broad sense - is used within the wider contexts of our everyday lives.

"The first edition of Understanding Digital Culture set a new benchmark as the most comprehensive, scholarly and accessible introduction to the area. This latest edition, thoroughly updated and substantially expanded, is even better – a perfectly balanced book that combines theory and empirical analysis to illuminate the cutting-edge of cultural and social change." 
- Professor Majid Yar, Lancaster University
Revolutionary Technologies?

The Structure of the Book

Chapter 1: Key Elements of Digital Media
Technical Processes

Cultural Forms

Immersive Experiences

Chapter 2: The Economic Foundations of the Information Age

The Information Society

Post-Fordism and Globalisation

Informationalism and the Network Society

Weightless Economies, Intellectual Property and the Commodification of Knowledge

Chapter 3: Convergence and the Contemporary Media Experience
Technological Convergence

Regulatory Convergence

Media Industry Convergence

Convergence Culture ad the Contemporary Media Experience

Producers, Consumers, Prosumers and 'Produsage'

Chapter 4: 'Everyone is Watching': Privacy and Surveillance in Digital Life
The Changing Cultural Contexts of Privacy

Digital Surveillance: Spaces, Traces and Tools

The Rise Surveillance: Causes and Processes

Commercial Imperatives and the Political Economy of Surveillance

Why Care about a Surveillance Society?

Chapter 5: Information Politics and the Online Public Sphere
The Poltical Context of Information Politics

ICT-Enabled Politics

An Internet Public Sphere?

Chapter 6: Cybercrime, Cyberterrorism and Cyberware
Cybercrime: A Muddy Field

The Tools and Techniques of Cybercrime, Cyberactivism and Cyberwarfare

Cyber Politics by Another Means: Cyber Warfare

Chapter 7: Digital Identity
'Objects to Think with': Early Internet Studies and Poststructuralism

Personal Homepages and the 'Re-Centring' of the Individual

Personal Blogging, Individualisation and the Reflexive Project of the Self

Avatar and Identity

Social Networks, Profiles and Networked Identity

Who needs Identity?

Chapter 8: Digital Community? Space, Networks and Relationships
Searching for Lost Community: Urbanisation, Space and Scales of Experience

Globalisation, Technology and the Rise of Individualism

'Virtual' Communities Over Before they Began?

Network Societies, Network Socialities and Networked Individualism

Being Together Online: Networks, Instrumentalism and Intimacy

Chapter 9: The Body and Information Technology
The Body, Technology and Society

The Posthuman

Technology, Embodiment Relations and 'Homo Faber'

Conclusion: Base, Superstructure, Infrastructure (Revisited)

I have used this book for a course on digital culture (bachelor’s degree). The author provides a wide list of references to literature in the field and have made a beautiful overview of literature, history, and various perspectives. I think it’s a very nice piece of work, which contextualizing a lot of contemporary issues related to digital media, social media, ICT, artificial intelligence. There you can find short introductions to most important theories on digital culture as well.

Dr Vincas Grigas
Library Science, Vilnius University
June 3, 2020