Graduation Year

2004

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree

Ph.D.

Degree Granting Department

Anthropology

Major Professor

Bird, S. Elizabeth

Keywords

mediascape, blog, mass media, journalism, virtual community

Abstract

Weblogging is an Internet social practice that became known as a technology. This project investigated weblogging (blogging) as an example of a media technology that arose under particular historical circumstances. To investigate this, blogs were examined in detail, participant-observation was used to construct and run a blog, and practicing bloggers were interviewed. The study found that blogging, like all technology, originates within existing social practice (context); has a diffusion process that causes it to spread between people (Geek-Chic); and leads to certain social outcomes (Personal Community). This is seen as a general pattern for the lifecycle of technology, serving to argue the case that shifts in social practice lead to technology, not the other way around.

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