Being social: Missing pre-requisites for online engagement, exchange and inclusion

Publication Type:
Conference Proceeding
Citation:
Refereed proceedings of the Australian and New Zealand Communication Association Annual Conference 2014, 2014, pp. 1 - 20 (20)
Issue Date:
2014-08-01
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Despite cautionary analyses and critiques by some scholars, cyberoptimism and what Steve Woolgar calls cyberbole continue to characterise much discussion of social media in the context of democratic politics (e-democracy) and citizen engagement and participation, and is evident in claims of emergence of the ‘social organisation’ and ‘social business’. This paper synthesises the findings of three recent research studies, which show that the allegedly democratising social interaction and dialogic affordances of Web 2.0 are not being realised in many applications. Key missing prerequisites for engagement, exchange and inclusion are identified and highlighted as issues for attention in research and practice.
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