Virtualpolitik: An Electronic History of Government Media-Making in a Time of War, Scandal, Disaster, Miscommunication, and Mistakes

Virtualpolitik: An Electronic History of Government Media-Making in a Time of War, Scandal, Disaster, Miscommunication, and Mistakes

by Elizabeth Losh
ISBN-10:
0262123045
ISBN-13:
2900262123043
Pub. Date:
05/29/2009
Publisher:
MIT Press
Select a Purchase Option (New Edition)
  • purchase options

    Temporarily Out of Stock Online

    icon-error
    Note: Access code and/or supplemental material are not guaranteed to be included with textbook rental or used textbook.
  • purchase options
    $20.86 $30.95 Save 33% Current price is $20.86, Original price is $30.95. You Save 33%.
  • purchase options
    $17.19 $30.95 Save 44% Current price is $17.19, Original price is $30.95. You Save 44%.
    icon-error
    Note: Access code and/or supplemental material are not guaranteed to be included with textbook rental or used textbook.

Overview

Virtualpolitik: An Electronic History of Government Media-Making in a Time of War, Scandal, Disaster, Miscommunication, and Mistakes

Government media-making, from official websites to whistleblowers' e-mail, and its sometimes unintended consequences.

Today government agencies not only have official Web sites but also sponsor moderated chats, blogs, digital video clips, online tutorials, videogames, and virtual tours of national landmarks. Sophisticated online marketing campaigns target citizens with messages from the government -- even as officials make news with digital gaffes involving embarrassing e-mails, instant messages, and videos. In Virtualpolitik, Elizabeth Losh closely examines the government's digital rhetoric in such cases and its dual role as mediamaker and regulator. Looking beyond the usual focus on interfaces, operations, and procedures, Losh analyzes the ideologies revealed in government's digital discourse, its anxieties about new online practices, and what happens when officially sanctioned material is parodied, remixed, or recontextualized by users. Losh reports on a video game that panicked the House Intelligence Committee, pedagogic and therapeutic digital products aimed at American soldiers, government Web sites in the weeks and months following 9/11, PowerPoint presentations by government officials and gadflies, e-mail as a channel for whistleblowing, digital satire of surveillance practices, national digital libraries, and computer-based training for health professionals. Losh concludes that the government's "virtualpolitik" -- its digital realpolitik aimed at preserving its own power -- is focused on regulation, casting as criminal such common online activities as file sharing, video-game play, and social networking. This policy approach, she warns, indefinitely postpones building effective institutions for electronic governance, ignores constituents' need to shape electronic identities to suit their personal politics, and misses an opportunity to learn how citizens can have meaningful interaction with the virtual manifestations of the state.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 2900262123043
Publisher: MIT Press
Publication date: 05/29/2009
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 432
Product dimensions: 6.50(w) x 1.50(h) x 9.50(d)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See All Customer Reviews