Project #154406 - Digital Communication & Culture

Computer Tutors

Subject Computer
Due By (Pacific Time) 12/12/2016 12:00 am

Length:        10-15 pages

Due:               Part I - 11/23 by 11:59pm 

                        Part II - 12/19 by 11:59pm 


This paper requires you to critically analyze a specific aspect of spectacle and transgression in the contemporary (digital) media landscape. As such, you are required to formulate an argument about the aspect you choose; your argument must be unobvious and should avoid restating or rehashing arguments found in the readings. The paper must be 10-15 pages, double-spaced using Times New Roman font, and have 1-inch margins. Cite your sources using APA or MLA style (just make sure you’re consistent with the style guide you choose).


You can approach this assignment from a variety of angles, including but not limited to:


Analyzing an aspect of or practice on a specific site, like an online subcultural space (4chan, cDc); cliques or griefing practices in World of Warcraft; ambient affiliations through hashtags on Twitter; etc. Key questions to answer here are: Why do people participate in these sites/phenomena? Are they aiming to cultivate social change? Is it ethical and why/why not? and so on.


Analyzing an aspect of or practice in a current online or hybrid(online and offline) event, including but not limited to #Gamergate, #Ferguson (and associated hashtags like #stoptheparade), #CutForBieber, #YourSlipIsShowing, etc. Key questions to answer here are: Why do people participate in this phenomena? How are communities created and sustained? What is the spectacular transgression, is it ethical, is it effective, and why/why not? and so on.


Analyzing infrastructures and/or perusal practices, including but not limited to the ways in which high-velocity sites like 4chan change our reading practices; the ways in which fake news (The Daily Show, The Onion); etc. Key questions to ask here are: What are the ramifications for offline practices if digital media changes the way we “interface” with the world? What modalities are best suited to the contemporary landscape, on/offline? Why? and so on.


Analyzing a contemporary trolling or hacking incident, such as Stratfor, the celebrity nudes leak, Westboro Baptist Church, etc. Key questions to ask here are: Why did the trolls/hackers target this particular site? Why did they use the tactics they chose? Was it effective as transgressive spectacle and was it an ethical spectacle, and why/why not? and so on.


Using a framework from one or more of the readings, such as Coleman’s examination of trolling or Bakioglu’s methodological set up, to examine a phenomenon in a different space and thereby illuminate it: for example, applying Hyde’s definitional attributes of tricksterism to explain trolls-as-tricksters when phone-jamming Westboro Baptist Church; or using Bakioglu’s magic circle/gameplay/griefing ideas to explain the use of Ferguson protest gestures during the Rams game.


However you choose to approach your paper, you must engage 5-10 readings from the syllabus. (~8 readings might be good to start with.) Do not simply summarize the readings or insert quotes as though they suffice for explanation. Rather, you must identify and define the key concepts in the readings and then use those concepts to explain your object of analysis.


In addition, you should not use external sources (online pieces, news articles, journal articles, books, etc.).


If you do not submit your paper on time, you will receive a 0 for the assignment. Late work will not be accepted for any reason, so exercise appropriate time management to ensure that you spend time doing your research, developing your argument, and writing your paper.



*****For Part I, you must identify your artifact, create an argument around it, and begin drafting your paper using some of the readings from the course. Your submission should be 5-7 pages total.*******


**I would provided more readings once the paper is assigned 


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