[Air-L] Three new free books from the UCL Why We Post Social Media Study

Major, Alison alison.major at ucl.ac.uk
Mon Mar 7 06:35:30 PST 2016

 ******Apologies for any cross-posting********
UCL Press is delighted to announce the publication of three brand new open access books that may be of interest to members of this list.

Download all three books free from http://bit.ly/1TRDJAw

How the World Changed Social Media
Download free from http://bit.ly/24AUbKH

How the World Changed Social Media is the first book in Why We Post, a book series that investigates the findings of anthropologists who each spent 15 months living in communities across the world. This book offers a comparative analysis summarising the results of the research and explores the impact of social media on politics and gender, education and commerce. What is the result of the increased emphasis on visual communication? Are we becoming more individual or more social? Why is public social media so conservative? Why does equality online fail to shift inequality offline? How did memes become the moral police of the internet?

Supported by an introduction to the project’s academic framework and theoretical terms that help to account for the findings, the book argues that the only way to appreciate and understand something as intimate and ubiquitous as social media is to be immersed in the lives of the people who post. Only then can we discover how people all around the world have already transformed social media in such unexpected ways and assess the consequences.

Download free from http://bit.ly/24AUbKH

Social Media in an English Village
Download free from http://bit.ly/1nhPP9o

Daniel Miller spent 18 months undertaking an ethnographic study with the residents of an English village, tracking their use of the different social media platforms. Following his study, he argues that a focus on platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram does little to explain what we post on social media. Instead, the key to understanding how people in an English village use social media is to appreciate just how ‘English’ their usage has become. He introduces the ‘Goldilocks Strategy’: how villagers use social media to calibrate precise levels of interaction ensuring that each relationship is neither too cold nor too hot, but ‘just right’.

He explores the consequences of social media for groups ranging from schoolchildren through to the patients of a hospice, and he compares these connections to more traditional forms of association such as the church and the neighbourhood. Above all, Miller finds an extraordinary clash between new social media that bridges the private and the public domains, and an English sensibility that is all about keeping these two domains separate.

Download free, or purchase print from http://bit.ly/1nhPP9o

Social Media in Southeast Turkey
Download free from http://bit.ly/1oOTIDJ
This book presents an ethnographic study of social media in Mardin, a medium-sized town located in the Kurdish region of Turkey. The town is inhabited mainly by Sunni Muslim Arabs and Kurds, and has been transformed in recent years by urbanisation, neoliberalism and political events.

Elisabetta Costa uses her 15 months of ethnographic research to explain why public- facing social media is more conservative than offline life. Yet, at the same time, social media has opened up unprecedented possibilities for private communications between genders and in relationships among young people – Costa reveals new worlds of intimacy, love and romance. She also discovers that, when viewed from the perspective of people’s everyday lives, political participation on social media looks very different to how it is portrayed in studies of political postings separated from their original complex, and highly socialised, context.

Download free, or purchase print from http://bit.ly/1oOTIDJ

About Why We Post

Why do we post on social media? Is it true that we are replacing face-to-face relationships with on-screen life? Are we becoming more narcissistic with the rise of selfies? Does social media create or suppress political action, destroy privacy or become the only way to sell something? And are these claims equally true for a factory worker in China and an IT professional in India? With these questions in mind, nine anthropologists each spent 15 months living in communities in China, Brazil, Turkey, Chile, India, England, Italy and Trinidad. They studied not only platforms but the content of social media to understand both why we post and the consequences of social media on our lives. Their findings indicate that social media is more than communication – it is also a place where we now live.  The first three titles have now been released- if you’d like us to notify you about forthcoming titles when the publish, sign up at bit.ly/whywepostbooks

To find out more about the Why We Post project (outputs include a MOOC, website, youtube channel and 11 open access books), visit ucl.ac.uk/why-we-post

Follow UCL Press on Twitter: @uclpress
Website: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/ucl-press

Alison Major
Marketing and Distribution Manager, UCL Press
UCL (University College London)
Gower Street
London WC1E 6BT
Email: uclpresspublishing at gmail.com<mailto:uclpresspublishing at gmail.com>

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