[Air-l] ICE-T anyone

Ben Anderson benander at essex.ac.uk
Thu Jul 5 03:57:27 PDT 2007


We've seen similar behaviour here in the rural parts of eastern  
England. This is true for 'catalogue' style commerce which, as you  
observe, is not really that different from much that has gone before  
but also my colleague Becky Ellis has documented how e-Bay in  
particular is supporting small/medium sized (SME) rural 'lifestyle'  
businesses (often run by ex-urbanites) and also localised exchange  
systems of various kinds. It may also be supporting 'buy local'  
trends. The distinction between consumer <-> consumer exchange (using  
money or otherwise) and small businesses doing the same is fuzzy  
although the UK tax Department will say otherwise. We haven't (yet)  
done systematic comparative studies which include urban areas to see  
if your rural/urban dimension holds here but one thing respondents  
told Becky was that receiving large high-value packages in urban  
areas was often problematic - in rural areas there tends to be  
somewhere to tuck them out of sight (and out of the rain - currently  
a major issue!) and partly in consequence they are less likely to get  

Her reports and papers are here:


We're currently extending this work to start looking at specifically  
trade-focused sites such as www.bttradespace.com with a view to  
understanding how these and other sites/systems mediate (or not) the  
various kinds of social capital.
  that are crucial to small businesses.


PS. have you tried Long Island Iced Tea http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ 
Long_Island_Iced_Tea (no tea in there). Tastes like cola, hits like a  
hammer - the cause of several unexplained injuries in student days :-)

On 5 Jul 2007, at 02:33, Barry Wellman wrote:

> A group of us have been studying Chapleau, northern Ontario. We have
> discovered that in addition to the I and the C of ICT, the folks  
> there use
> the Internet more than urbanites to find out about -- and to order --
> goods. Sorta like the Sears or the Eatons catalog of old that  
> served rural
> areas. Some may even sell on eBay, etc -- we'll check on that this  
> fall.
> Altho you might argue that browsing the net for goods is  
> "Information", it
> would be a real stretch to say that actually buying and selling  
> goods is
> info (or comm). Hence, we propose the new acronym, ICE-T, for  
> Information,
> Communication and Exchange Technologies.*
> Before I/we go too far with this, what do you think?
> *Not to be confused with the actor/rapper or the tilting German train,
> much less that heavily sweetened stuff I get in the US South.
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ICE-T
> PS: Happy Canada Day to all.
>  Barry Wellman
> ______________________________________________________________________ 
> _
>   S.D. Clark Professor of Sociology, FRSC              NetLab Director
>   Centre for Urban & Community Studies           University of Toronto
>   455 Spadina Avenue    Toronto Canada M5S 2G8     fax:+1-416-978-7162
>   wellman at chass.utoronto.ca   http://www.chass.utoronto.ca/~wellman
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>           Elvis wouldn't be singing Return to Sender these days
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