Sunday, November 28, 2004

11/29 discussion questions

1. I was interested in the question Cummings and Kraut asked regarding whether the Internet has become "domesticated" because of a change in the user base or because of a change in the online environment. While they are able to show to some degree that the demographics of Internet users increasingly reflect U.S. demographics, they were unsuccessful in showing a change in the environment with their data. Does their suggestion of using adaptive structuration theory address this question or something else?

2. In many ways, the technocentric tone of the Poster article makes it sound like something that would have been published in the mid to late 90s, when everybody was supposed to be working from home, provided of course that work as we knew it didn't end outright. Is there a more sober way of discussing the impact that networked computing has on the nature of work? I'm not convinced by the "posthuman" argument, especially given the discussion we had last week (how easily and quickly the technology disappears when we really start talking about the labor).

3. Does Postigo's example of the changes in community-building activities at AOL ("community as commodity") take a step towards understanding changes in the online environment and online culture, or is the corporatization of the Internet only part of the big picture?

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