38 episodes

Interviews by Chris Till with researchers of all areas of digital culture and society.

Digital Sociology Podcast Digital Sociology

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.6 • 5 Ratings

Interviews by Chris Till with researchers of all areas of digital culture and society.

    Digital Sociology Podcast Episode 28 Michael Rosino on drug policy, race & online comments

    Digital Sociology Podcast Episode 28 Michael Rosino on drug policy, race & online comments

    For this episode I spoke to Michael Rosino about his book Debating the Drug War: Race, Politics, and the Media which comes from a detailed analysis of the discourse on drug policy and race in newspapers and the comment sections of their online versions.

    Michael tells me about the discourses he identified which often deny racism and racial oppression as a factor in patterns of criminalisation of groups in drug related crime statistics.

    Michael is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at Molloy College, Long Island, New York and you can follow him on Twitter @michaelrosino 

    You can listen to the episode and subscribe on the Anchor website via the link below or by searching for “Digital Sociology Podcast” on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts or wherever else you get podcasts.

    This will be the last episode for a while but I hope to be back with some more in the future. However, in the meantime I will be launching a new series of my Social Theory Podcast in the next couple of weeks.

    • 1 hr 7 min
    Digital Sociology Podcast Episode 27 Guerrilla Democracy

    Digital Sociology Podcast Episode 27 Guerrilla Democracy

    For this episode I spoke to Peter Bloom  who is a Professor of Management at the University of Essex, Owain Smolović Jones who is Director of the Open University's Research into Employment, Empowerment and Futures academic centre of excellence and Jamie Woodcock who is Senior Lecturer at the Open University.

    We talk about their new book Guerilla Democracy: Mobile Power and Revolution in the 21st Century which is a theoretically sophisticated analysis of digital politics.

    We have a fascinating chat about different examples of radical collective action (from striking cinema and restaurant workers to anti-vaxxers and the storming of the Capitol) and the guests suggest some creative and challenging ways of understanding these events. What role have digital technologies and networks played in these events? Do they enable easier and more effective political action? Are these digitally facilitated resistances only disruptive or can they lead to constructive political alternatives?

    You can follow Peter on Twitter @pbloombk, Owain @SunnOwain and Jamie @jamie_woodcock

    You can listen to the episode and subscribe on the Anchor website via the link below or by searching for “Digital Sociology Podcast” on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts or wherever else you get podcasts.

    • 1 hr 9 min
    Digital Sociology Podcast Episode 26: Ben Jacobsen and David Beer on Social Media and Memory

    Digital Sociology Podcast Episode 26: Ben Jacobsen and David Beer on Social Media and Memory

    This episode is a really great chat I had with Ben Jacobsen and David Beer both of The University of York.

    We talk about their new book Social Media and the Automatic Production of Memory Classification, Ranking and the Sorting of the Past which is an exploration of the ways in which social media engages with memory and how this becomes significant for their platforms. They focus on the "Facebook Memories" app within the Facebook platform which generates reminders to users of previous posts, photos or other content.

    We talk about what kinds of memories Facebook values and how it draws in previous interactions to create new content which is likely to produce more engagement in the present.

    They tell me about how the distinction between a "real" memory and one created by Facebook is blurring and how the platform's perspective on what memories are valuable differ from those of users. This also tells us a lot about the role which the platform plays in creating or assessing the value of memories.

    You can read more about their work in an LSE blog post.

    You can follow Ben on Twitter @bn_jacobsen and find David's website here.

    • 45 min
    Digital Sociology Podcast Episode 25: Scott Timcke, algorithms, politics, capitalism & racism

    Digital Sociology Podcast Episode 25: Scott Timcke, algorithms, politics, capitalism & racism

    In this episode I spoke to Scott Timcke who is a comparative historical sociologist, with an interest in race, class, and technology in modernity. He is a research associate with the University of Johannesburg’s Centre for Social Change and a fellow at the University of Leeds’ Centre for African Studies.

    The basis of our discussion is Scott's book Algorithms and the end of Politics: How Technology Shapes 21st Century American Life which was published in 2021 by Bristol University Press.

    Scott tells about how algorithms and processes of datafication are influencing how politics functions. In particular, how the role which particular form of capitalism which has been enabled by the internet and digital technologies and networks affects politics.

    We talk about credit rating systems, the hidden ways in which we are influenced, Trump and the progress which needs to be made on considerations of race in our analysis of politics and technology amongst many other things.

    It was was really fascinating to talk to Scott who has immense knowledge on how technology and politics function and is a great communicator.

    I mention that Scott has been on my other podcast but as things have panned out this episode has come out before the other ones have. But those new Social Theory Podcasts will be coming out in a few weeks (after this current run of the Digital Sociology Podcast).

    You can follow Scott on Twitter @scotttimcke and read his previous book Capital, State & Empire: The New American Way of Digital Warfare via the University of Westminster Press website (Open Access).

    • 55 min
    Digital Sociology Podcast Episode 24: Mark Wong on Hidden Youth & Online Lives in Scotland and Hong Kong

    Digital Sociology Podcast Episode 24: Mark Wong on Hidden Youth & Online Lives in Scotland and Hong Kong

    There has been a huge gap since the last episode as life, work and then Covid got in the way. I will be putting out a few episodes over the next few weeks which have all been recorded recently with the exception of this first interview with Mark Wong. This was recorded in 2019 and was intended to be the first of a series which I didn't manage to do at the time. But Mark's work is fascinating to reflect on in 2021 as he has done fascinating work on "Hidden Youth", that is, young people who spend all or most of their time at home engaging with other people solely online.

    This has been a familiar experience to many people over the last 18 months or so which makes Mark's research and insights more important than ever. Mark tells me about this growing phenomenon and the experiences of people he spoke to which challenge some of the perceptions of people who spend much of their time physically alone at home. The "Hidden Youth" are not necessarily isolated or disconnected, rather, they are highly connected with others and well-informed about cultural issues and trends. Also, in many cases digital communication facilitated more meaningful and emotional engagement and connection.

    Central to Mark's work is a comparison between "Hidden Youth" in Scotland and in Hong Kong and we talk about some of the differences between these two contexts.

    Mark Wong is a Lecturer in Public Policy and Research Methods in the School of Social & Political Sciences at the University of Glasgow.

    You can read Mark's article on "Hidden Youth" in New Media & Society and in his university repository.

    You can follow Mark on Twitter @UoG_MarkWong

    • 44 min
    Digital Sociology Podcast Episode 23: Elinor Carmi, content moderators, telephone operators and politics of "listening"

    Digital Sociology Podcast Episode 23: Elinor Carmi, content moderators, telephone operators and politics of "listening"

    In this episode I am talking to Elinor Carmi who is a Postdoc Research Associate in Digital Culture & Society at the University of Liverpool. She tells me about how her experience of working in radio and music production and as a feminist has influenced her current analysis of digital media work. In particular we discuss her comparison and analysis of early 20th century telephone operators and contemporary online content moderators. Elinor suggests that there are similarities between the ways in which (usually female) telephone operators were not only responsible for connecting calls but for maintaining the smooth front end experience for callers. One of the key tasks required of them was to distinguish between "message" and "noise" and remove the latter. Content moderators have to make similar distinctions in with online content by removing violent, sexual and other content which doesn't fit with the values which the platform wishes to present. The power of this analysis is made stark through the example of how Facebook considers male nipples to be "message" and female nipples "noise". 

    You can follow Elinor on Twitter 

    @Elinor_Carmi

    You can read Elinor's article 'The Hidden Listeners: Regulating the Line from Telephone Operators to Content Moderators' in the International Journal of Communication

    https://ijoc.org/index.php/ijoc/article/view/8588

    Elinor's article 'Cookies – More than Meets the Eye' in the journal Theory, Culture & Society

    • 45 min

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5
5 Ratings

5 Ratings

baldeagle7276361 ,

thank you!!!

as a new graduate student w/ a deep interest in digital sociology/ virtual place making, this podcast has been helping me develop my own ideas and helps me understand the coursework- thankyou!!

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