Posts Tagged ‘IR13’

IR13 Session: “The Ubiquitous Internet”

October 13, 2012


Salford, Greater Manchester, UK  ·  October 18 -21, 2012

Session 001: “The Ubiquitous Internet” Friday, 19/Oct/2012: 4:40pm – 6:10pm, Location: 0.11. Session Chair: Anja Bechmann

Looking forward to our presentation The Ubiquitous Internet, which will include: Anja Bechmann1, Stine Lomborg2, William Dutton3, Grant Blank3, Christine von Seelen Schou4, Robert Bodle5, Laura DeNardis6

1Aarhus University, Denmark; 2University of Copenhagen, Denmark; 3Oxford Internet Institute (UK); 4The University of Copenhagen (DK); 5College of Mount St. Joseph (US); 6American University (US)

My presentation below (full session overview here) –

Monetizing Social Media: The conditions for sharing 

Robert Bodle, College of Mount St. Joseph (US)

This presentation looks at the conditions for sharing on Facebook and its over 300 million partner websites, by identifying the tacit agreement between internet companies and users – that we get useful and interesting online services in exchange for the disclosure of our personal information. Increased advertising revenue provides incredible incentives for mining user data obtained via social network sites and services. Although people are increasingly concerned about how their information may be used, it is still difficult to get the full picture, which, I argue, is intentional.

To get a fuller picture of the conditions for sharing, I analyse the relationships between Facebook and its third-party advertising ecosystem, utilizing extensive internet industry press coverage, Public comments by Facebook’s Developer Blog and management team, as well as Facebook’s public communications in interviews and trade conferences. I apply a political economy approach (Terranova 2000; Mosco 2009; Wasco & Erickson 2009) to evaluate the conflict of interest between market logic and user needs. Additionally, I apply the progressive and humanistic ideals of liberalism (McChesney 2007) and cross-cultural communication ethics (Ess 2009), to assess the social, cultural, and political implications of personalization.

I provide a current appraisal of Facebook’s human/algorithmic hybridization practices used to personalize the web experience for social advertising revenue. I then look at the intended and unintended consequences of personalization, which includes limiting our exposure to different points of view, enabling entrenched political polarization, and discouraging consensus, critical thinking, and tolerance of diversity and appreciation of people’s irreducible differences. Ultimately, this presentation argues for the need to change the conditions for sharing on social network sites (granular control, transparency of how information is used, and regulated security measures to protect our data), and suggests that opt-in defaults be the Internet standard for data-driven advertising practices.

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