danah boyd has done some of the best and most creative research on social networking, particularly how teenagers are using technology. She is a PhD candidate at the School of Information (iSchool) at the University of California Berkeley. She describes her research this way:
My research focuses on how people negotiate a presentation of self to unknown audiences in mediated contexts. In particular, my dissertation examines how American teenagers socialize in networked publics like MySpace, Facebook, LiveJournal, Xanga and YouTube. I am interested in how the architectural differences between unmediated and mediated publics affect sociality, identity and culture.
She is a dynamic speaker, prolific blogger, and insightful, passionate researcher. If you have never heard danah speak, I recommend watching this brief video! It should be of interest to anyone who wants to understand how young people are using technology and that should be all librarians because that is affecting how they use (and expect to be able to use) the library and its services. (It starts off looking like it is going to be a beer ad, but stick with it; that’s just showing where the interview was held.)
- Video Interview with danah boyd, Discover Magazine (Feb 12, 2008). 14 minutes. (here is an alternate link to the same video)
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