Portable Communities: The Social Dynamics of Online and Mobile Connectedness

Portable Communities: The Social Dynamics of Online and Mobile Connectedness

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by Mary Chayko
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0791475999

ISBN-13: 9780791475997

Pub. Date: 10/09/2008

Publisher: State University of New York Press

In contemporary American life, community has become a portable phenomenon-you can "get it to go" wherever and whenever it is desired at the push of a button, mouse, or keyboard. In Portable Communities, sociologist Mary Chayko examines the social dynamics and implications of having access to countless others at any time. Teeming with the observations of people who

Overview

In contemporary American life, community has become a portable phenomenon-you can "get it to go" wherever and whenever it is desired at the push of a button, mouse, or keyboard. In Portable Communities, sociologist Mary Chayko examines the social dynamics and implications of having access to countless others at any time. Teeming with the observations of people who blog, email, instant message, game, and chat on cell phones, wireless computers, and other portable devices, the book captures the appeal and the excitement, the challenges and the complexities, of online and mobile connectedness. Chayko considers some of the external dynamics that emerge as these communities resonate within the larger society-constant availability, social interaction that is more controlled and controllable, and new opportunities for self-expression, creativity, and even voyeurism. Internal social dynamics involving emotionality, intimacy, play, romance, and networking are also fully explored. Portable Communities provides a unique view of shifts in the social landscape and points the way toward needed social and political change.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780791475997
Publisher:
State University of New York Press
Publication date:
10/09/2008
Pages:
318
Product dimensions:
6.20(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.00(d)

Table of Contents

I Introduction: The Internet, Mobile Phones, and Community

1 The Portability of Social Connectedness 3

II Internal Dynamics: Inside the Portable Community

2 Thinking in Tandem: Cognitive Connectedness 17

The Cognitive "Face" of the Community 18

Sociomental Space 22

Cognitive Resonance 25

Stories and Collective Memories 31

Proximity, Presence, and Reality 37

3 Feeling Connected: Emotionality and Intimacy 43

Friendship and Intimacy 44

Trust and Social Support 51

Happiness and Hostility: The Moderation of Moods and Behavior 56

4 Playing Around: Fun, Games, and Hanging Out 63

Games 64

Just "Hanging Out" 69

Playful Talk: Humor, Gossip, and Flirting 73

The Seductive Allure of Fun 78

5 Social Networking: Convenience, Practicality, and Sociability 87

Sociability 88

Convenience 93

Dating, Romance, and Sex 97

Learning, Working, and Getting Things Done 101

III External Dynamics: The Portable Community in the Society

6 Being There: Constant Availability 113

Comfort and Companionship 114

Emergencies 120

Anxiety, Apprehension, and Overload 124

The Impact on Privacy 130

7 Harnessing Social Interaction: The Control of Time, Space, and People 141

Where, When, and Whether We Interact 142

Technology-Based Strategies for Interaction 145

Spontaneity and Social Interaction 155

8 Creating, Expressing, and Extending the Self (and Watching Others Do So) 159

Socialization in a Technological Age 160

The Making and Remaking of the Self 166

Voyeurism, Watching, and Lurking 173

Multitasking and the "Hyperlinking" of Identity 178

9 Shaping the Social Landscape: Equalities, Inequalities,Possibilities 183

Technological Divides and Power Differentials 184

Old Problems, New Angles 186

Agency and Activism: Mobilizing for Social Change 191

A Look Ahead 197

Acknowledgments 203

Appendix 1 The Methodology 205

Appendix 2 Profiles of Interview Subjects 215

Notes 233

References 255

Index 291

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Portable Communities: The Social Dynamics of Online and Mobile Connectedness 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Portable Communities is such an excellent book, going into depth as to how technology affects our society not only in small groups, but larger ones as well. Dr. Mary Chayko does a wonderful job explaining the sociological factors in how people connect virtually, and provides examples of other people’s perspectives of the Internet. This is an outstanding book for anyone who has an interest in learning about the positive and negative aspects in socializing with others in an online atmosphere.