Digital Methods

Digital Methods

by Richard Rogers

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Overview

Digital Methods by Richard Rogers

A proposal to repurpose Web-native techniques for use in social and cultural scholarly research.

In Digital Methods, Richard Rogers proposes a methodological outlook for social and cultural scholarly research on the Web that seeks to move Internet research beyond the study of online culture. It is not a toolkit for Internet research, or operating instructions for a software package; it deals with broader questions. How can we study social media to learn something about society rather than about social media use? Rogers proposes repurposing Web-native techniques for research into cultural change and societal conditions. We can learn to reapply such "methods of the medium" as crawling and crowd sourcing, PageRank and similar algorithms, tag clouds and other visualizations; we can learn how they handle hits, likes, tags, date stamps, and other Web-native objects. By "thinking along" with devices and the objects they handle, digital research methods can follow the evolving methods of the medium.

Rogers uses this new methodological outlook to examine such topics as the findings of inquiries into 9/11 search results, the recognition of climate change skeptics by climate-change-related Web sites, and the censorship of the Iranian Web. With Digital Methods, Rogers introduces a new vision and method for Internet research and at the same time applies them to the Web's objects of study, from tiny particles (hyperlinks) to large masses (social media).

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780262528245
Publisher: MIT Press
Publication date: 08/21/2015
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 280
Product dimensions: 6.80(w) x 8.70(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Richard Rogers is University Professor of New Media and Digital Culture at the University of Amsterdam and the author of Information Politics on the Web (MIT Press).

Table of Contents

Introduction: Situating Digital Methods 1

1 The End of the Virtual: Digital Methods 19

2 The Link and the Politics of Web Space 39

3 The Website as Archived Object 61

4 Googlization and the Inculpable Engine 83

5 Search as Research: Source Distance and Cross-Spherical Analysis 95

6 National Web Studies 125

7 Social Media and Postdemographics 153

8 Wikipedia as Cultural Reference 165

9 After Cyberspace: Big Data, Small Data 203

Notes 213

References 233

Index 261

What People are Saying About This

Michael X. Delli Carpini

Digital Methods is not a methods book in the traditional sense of the genre, though one will learn a great deal about 'virtual methods' from reading it. It's an historical, epistemological, and ontological treatise on the nature of the Internet and the purpose of Internet research. Rogers argues that the 'natively digital' can serve as a (complicated) window into the broader social, cultural, and political worlds we all inhabit. His argument is a compelling one that will change the way we think about the 'virtual,' the 'real,' and what each can tell us about the other.

From the Publisher

" Digital Methods is not a methods book in the traditional sense of the genre, though one will learn a great deal about 'virtual methods' from reading it. It's an historical, epistemological, and ontological treatise on the nature of the Internet and the purpose of Internet research. Rogers argues that the 'natively digital' can serve as a (complicated) window into the broader social, cultural, and political worlds we all inhabit. His argument is a compelling one that will change the way we think about the 'virtual,' the 'real,' and what each can tell us about the other." -- Michael X. Delli Carpini, Dean, Annenberg School for
Communication, University of Pennsylvania

The MIT Press

"This is a remarkable book that fills a gaping hole on questions of method. Over the years, Richard Rogers has contributed to questions of method and research in digital domains. This is his best yet." -- Saskia Sassen, Columbia University; author of Digital
Formations

The MIT Press

Saskia Sassen

This is a remarkable book that fills a gaping hole on questions of method. Over the years, Richard Rogers has contributed to questions of method and research in digital domains. This is his best yet.

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