Identity-Making and Social Media
Leisure spaces are key sites for the production of belonging and identity. As just another leisure space, the Net is obviously a significant site for such leisure work in contemporary society. Digital leisure, like other forms of leisure, provides both a communicatively rational way of interacting, and a space for the instrumentalization of such interactions. At the moment, I have taken to reading blogs analysing polling data ahead of the next General Election in the United Kingdom. I am interested in the way these blogs make slightly different forecasts based on their models, and the way in which members and supporters of different political parties choose to argue for or against certain results. One of the blogs, politicalbetting.com, is interesting for leisure studies because the blogger is helping people make sense of the elections odds on the gambling market. The blogger wants people to see the strength or weakness of particular polls so they can make sense of the chances of political leaders and parties gaining success, so the readers of the blog can then make the right (most successful) bets. I do not intend to bet, but I am curious about the service provided by the blogger and the rational debates that take place below the line (contrary to the expected stereotype).
KeywordsSocial Network Social Medium Public Sphere Popular Culture Chat Room
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