Citizens and Spokesmen: Politics and Personal Expression on the Web

Citizens and Spokesmen: Politics and Personal Expression on the Web

Jennifer Petersen (University of Texas, Austin, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-878289-92-6.ch010
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Abstract

In this chapter, I suggest that rather than focusing the discussion of the socio-political impact of new communications technologies solely within the realm of electoral politics, the scope of analysis should be broadened to take into consideration how individuals are using the Internet and how those practices relate to social and political life. I argue against the equation of technology with increases in individual political agency and suggest an approach that is based in Internet use patterns. Research that does focus on individual web use suggests patterns and strategies of use that do not fall under the purview of these discussions but are nevertheless germane to U.S. democratic politics and public discussion.

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