Lost in Space? Social Media-Innovation and Minority Language Use
AbstractThis thesis explores how users of minority languages engage in innovative practices in Social Media. They create new opportunities to communicate in their languages. These include designing web-based tools to support interaction, translating interfaces, and enhancing the visibility and relevance of these languages in new domains. I propose Social Media-Innovation as a generative critical concept to explore innovations that aim to address social needs in media contexts. These innovations have three central attributes that also serve as an initial analytical framework. They must be considered relevant by their users to address identified social needs. They require the mobilisation of empowering capabilities to repurpose capacities for communication to address these needs. They also involve new constellations of agents. The interests of these agents influence how social innovations are implemented in media contexts. Social Media provide individual users with the capacity to create and distribute mediated content. Prevailing discourses imply that this potential for participation is empowering and may improve social integration. This is particularly relevant in the context of groups that have previously been marginalised in traditional media, such as minority language users. Exploring these practices as innovations enables a more critical interrogation of the discourses of empowerment that surround them. Global media corporations grant the capacity for participation to users. It is the result of processes of technological standardisation that serve commercial interests. Participation is facilitated to aggregate data about individual users and trade this for commercial revenue. I find that the capacity to participate differs from the power users require to innovate and create new opportunities for communication. This power is grounded in an understanding of users’ communication needs. It requires the mobilisation of relevant capabilities, including linguistic and digital literacy skills, in order to address these needs. It also requires the alignment of new constellations of agents that have both social and commercial interests. These agents influence how new opportunities for communication are created.
List of papers
|Article One: Social Media-Innovation: The Case of Indigenous Tweets. In: The Journal of Media Innovations 2.1 (2015), 89-106. The published article is available at: https://doi.org/10.5617/jmi.v2i1.974|
|Article Two Small Pieces in a Social Innovation Puzzle? Exploring the Motivations of Minority Language Users in Social Media. In: In T. Storsul and A.H. Krumsvik (2013) Media Innovations: A Multidisciplinary Study of Change. Göteborg: Nordicom.|
|Article Three: Lost in Space? Reaching-out to use minority languages in Twitter.|
|Article Four Dancing in the dark: Protecting networked privacy in social media research|