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
     
 

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… See more details below

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.

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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

3 Feeling Connected: Emotionality and Intimacy 43

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

5 Social Networking: Convenience, Practicality, and Sociability 87

III External Dynamics: The Portable Community in the Society

6 Being There: Constant Availability 113

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

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

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

Appendix 1 The Methodology 205

Appendix 2 Profiles of Interview Subjects 215

Notes 233

References 255

Index 291

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