Social Media and the Social Question

Speculations on Risk Media Society

Authored by: Joshua Neves

The Routledge Companion to Media and Risk

Print publication date:  March  2020
Online publication date:  February  2020

Print ISBN: 9781138638938
eBook ISBN: 9781315637501
Adobe ISBN:


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This chapter is organized around distinct conjugations of risk media, with a particular focus on social media. Social media are historically rooted and spatially diverse, but they are also consolidated in current anxieties about everything from fake news and fractured publics to new aesthetic forms, social habits, and geospatialities. To get at this complexity and move beyond familiar articulations of social media and related popular technologies and platforms, this discussion is organized around an analysis of new forms of risk and anxiety, the Internet of People and Things, and the relationship between social media and social movements. This chapters asks: what or where is the social in social media? Who or what can belong to it? How is (anti)sociality produced and managed? And what do “new” mediatized social relations tell us about risk media society?

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