Mediating the Social: Consequences for transition, design, critique and praxis
In this talk new media scholar Rhonda McEwen examines the context for the emergence of social media and explores the subject beyond superficial understandings of software use, to engage in debates regarding the consequences of these media for our sociality. She will begin with a reflection on a timeline representing the rise of social media, then shares research findings from four of her new media projects — as well as drawing on current affairs — to describe the roles of Facebook, SMS, Skype, Blogs, LinkedIn, and Twitter in the areas of transitions, design, critique, and praxis.
Rhonda McEwen is an assistant professor at the University of Toronto School of Information. She holds an MBA in IT from City University in London, England, an M.Sc. in telecommunications from the University of Colorado, and a Ph.D. in information from University of Toronto. Dr. McEwen's research and teaching center around information practices involving new media technologies, with an emphasis on mediated technologies for persons with sensory disabilities (iPad/iPod touch), mobile communication, social media design, and youth information practices. She has worked and researched digital communications media for 15 years, both in companies providing services and in management consulting to those companies. McEwen is currently researching the use of iPod and iPad devices by non-verbal autistic children for communication and sociality in two Toronto school settings.