COM22: Week 5

Omg I’m so over this unit! Sigh. Adam (the tutor) makes it bearable, but the subject matter is simply tedious, odious, monotonous drivel that I’ve already covered in other units. What on earth made me waste an entire elective on this unit?

Anyway, this week, we had to do something and read something and read something else and listen to something. And then we had to write something. And it’s assessable, so i thought I should do that bit. Thank google there’s only one more of these after this one!

Part a)   what was the key idea/message that you gained from these readings (you may choose any of the readings – Bell;  Lister et al; or boyd & ellison)?

Part b)  Bell  suggests that in order to deal with “clusters of connotations” in our material
stories, we often are “invisibilizing those people on the ‘wrong side’ of the
digital divide” (2007, p.6).

To what extent do you agree or disagree?


My Response:

Part A: I felt that the key message in Bell’s (2007a) chapter was how much Cyberculture is mutating, shifting and transubstantiating. While we live in a world and are experiencing the growth and expansion of cyberculture into our lives, it is often easy to become immune to seeing the ways things are actually changing. Bell (2007) called it a “still-morphing field” and I think this is superb description of our current relationship with the study of cyberculture.

Part B:

I disagree that those on the ‘wrong side of the digital divide’ are being invisiblised. Instead, I argue that the ‘wrong side’ is becoming smaller and smaller for those seeking a connection to the Internet but that like cyberculture, the ‘digital divide’ is constantly morphing and changing. Where once we felt it was only a connection to the superhighway that separated the ‘haves and the have-nots’, we now realise that the digital divide can be experienced in a variety of ways, from internet connection speed to lack of a smart phone. (Lister et al, 2009).



Bell, D 2007, “Why Cyberculture”, in Cyberculture Theorists: Manuel Castells and Donna Haraway, Routledge, New York, pp. 14.

Bell, D 2007a, “Why Cyberculture”, in Cyberculture Theorists: Manuel Castells and Donna Haraway, Routledge, New York, pp. 1-14.

Lister, M, Dovey, J, Giddings, S, Grant, I & Kelly, K 2009, New Media: A critical introduction, 2nd edn, Routledge, New York.

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