Three flawed assumptions the Daily Beast made about dating apps

(Cross-posted from the Social Media Collective blog) Last week, the Daily Beast published an article by one of its editors who sought to report about how dating apps were facilitating sexual encounters in Rio’s Olympic Village. Instead, his story focused mainly on athletes using Grindr, an app for men seeking men, and included enough personal […]

Can Facebook help you to be ‘post-gay’?

Like I mentioned in my last post, I’ve been mulling over this notion that we might be living in a ‘post-gay era’ now. I went digging in my interview data from my Master’s thesis, some of the findings of which have been published here, to further explore exactly what participants said about coming out and […]

Beginnings of a PhD project: Coming out and social media

(Image courtesy of the Degrassi Wiki) Let’s travel back to a formative time when I used to come home after school every day and watch reruns of the original Degrassi Junior High – a Canadian-made TV drama about tough teen issues. An episode* halfway through season three stands out: one of the main characters, Snake (they […]

A bit of practical advice

Your Networked World: Connections, Self-Presentation and Privacy in the Age of Social Media from Stefanie Duguay I’m giving this presentation at a “Lunch and Learn” event at work tomorrow! It will be my first time translating my research and literature review into practical advice and media literacy tips that everyday social media users can apply. […]

The Internet ≠ Progress

(Abandoned NSA ‘listening station’, Teufelsburg, Berlin) With the arrival of winter in Canada, there’s no better time to get books out of the library with no intention of returning them by their original due date. In an attempt to fill in my knowledge gaps relating to queer theory, LGBT studies, and feminism, I spent last […]

Social Media & Society 2013: Five ingredients for an amazing conference

Now that I’ve got your attention, just a quick shameless plug that I’ve updated all the pages under the Research tab with the findings of studies I conducted this past year. Have a read about Facebook’s perilous governance practices, what people think their Likes indicate about them, and how LGBTQ young people deal with context […]

Not ready to throw in the towel yet: Thoughts on Big Data, digital social research, and academia

(Not the future, merely the Gladstone Link) Full disclosure: This was written for a ‘position paper’ assignment in my Digital Social Research course at the OII. The article by Savage and Burrows (2007) plays on an insecurity that haunts me every time I pay my tuition: what ensures that social researchers have valuable, employable skills? […]

Making the Internet Safe: Tying Tim Harford’s thoughts on catastrophic accidents to the web

I just attended a talk from economist/journalist Tim Harford where he likened the financial meltdown (a much more extreme term than governments’ beloved euphemism of ‘economic downturn’) to a catastrophic industrial accident, such as when nuclear reactors go off or oil rigs explode. Through the entire talk all I could think about was how well Harford’s industrial […]

When you’re this big, they call you Big Data*

Upon stepping off the plane from Canada, I was fortunate enough to attend the Oxford Internet Institute’s latest conference: Internet, Politics, Policy 2012: Big Data, Big Challenges.  It was a fascinating gathering of the leading experts in this small but substantially growing field. Since my background is in qualitative methods and I have yet to […]