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Increasingly prominent in the discussion of new media and feminism is cyberfeminism    , the application to, and promotion of, feminism online. Research on cyberfeminism runs the gamut from the liberating use of blogs by women living in Iraq during the second Gulf War (Peirce 2011) to an investigation of the Suicide Girls web site (Magnet 2007).

Symbolic interactionism

Technology itself may act as a symbol for many. The kind of computer you own, the kind of car you drive, your ability to afford the latest Apple product—these serve as a social indicator of wealth and status. Neo-Luddites are people who see technology as symbolizing the coldness and alienation of modern life. But for technophiles    , technology symbolizes the potential for a brighter future. For those adopting an ideological middle ground, technology might symbolize status (in the form of a massive flat-screen television) or failure (ownership of a basic old mobile phone with no bells or whistles).

Social construction of reality

Meanwhile, media create and spread symbols that become the basis for our shared understanding of society. Theorists working in the interactionist perspective focus on this social construction of reality, an ongoing process in which people subjectively create and understand reality. Media constructs our reality in a number of ways. For some, the people they watch on a screen can become a primary group, meaning the small informal groups of people who are closest to them. For many others, media becomes a reference group: a group that influences an individual and to which an individual compares himself or herself, and by which we judge our successes and failures. We might do very well without the latest smartphone, until we see characters using it on our favorite television show or our classmates whipping it out between classes.

While media may indeed be the medium to spread the message of rich white males, Gamson, Croteau, Hoynes, and Sasson (1992) point out that some forms of media discourse allow competing constructions of reality to appear. For example, advertisers find new and creative ways to sell us products we don’t need and probably wouldn’t want without their prompting, but some networking sites such as Freecycle offer a commercial-free way of requesting and trading items that would otherwise be discarded. The web is also full of blogs chronicling lives lived “off the grid,” or without participation in the commercial economy.

Social networking and social construction

While Tumblr and Facebook encourage us to check in and provide details of our day through online social networks, corporations can just as easily promote their products on these sites. Even supposedly crowd-sourced sites like Yelp (which aggregates local reviews) are not immune to corporate shenanigans. That is, we think we are reading objective observations when in reality we may be buying into one more form of advertising.

Facebook, which started as a free social network for college students, is increasingly a monetized business, selling you goods and services in subtle ways. But chances are you don’t think of Facebook as one big online advertisement. What started out as a symbol of coolness and insider status, unavailable to parents and corporate shills, now promotes consumerism in the form of games and fandom. For example, think of all the money spent to upgrade popular Facebook games like Candy Crush. And notice that whenever you become a “fan,” you likely receive product updates and special deals that promote online and real-world consumerism. It is unlikely that millions of people want to be “friends” with Pampers. But if it means a weekly coupon, they will, in essence, rent out space on their Facebook pages for Pampers to appear. Thus, we develop both new ways to spend money and brand loyalties that will last even after Facebook is considered outdated and obsolete.

Questions & Answers

The development of applied anthropology and social impact assessment are working for the
Mame Reply
sociology definition
Gunjan Reply
scientific and systematic study of society comprising of social Institutions, norms, values, structures and individuals.
SHIVAM
what is society
rascal Reply
society is a group of people who live in a particular territory, are subject to a common system of political authority & share a common culture.
Godson
simply society is a group of who share terrirory and common culture
Mohamed
society is aggregate of people living together in a more or less ordered communities.
Khuzaifa
society is a group of people with common territory,interaction and culture.
Khuzaifa
What is motion
Fiko Reply
imagining sociologically, describe the current global pandemic?
Yasir Reply
I really want to know about what is " राज्य- राष्ट्र" ...please don't take it as nation state ।t is state- nation... could anyone explain this
Ritu Reply
imagining sociologically describe the current global pandemic
Yasir
what is state- nation not nation- state ... I have learned about nation state and I know very well but about "state-nation" I have learned a name only and there is no definition or clearfication about this in Google or other websites
Ritu
oh sorry I ask a question to you that imagining sociologically describe the current global pandemic?
Yasir
yet I've no enough idea about your question in which I can explain ....
Ritu
who coined the term sociology?
Chano Reply
discuss about the Marxian approaches of development.
Chano
how sociology bring development?
Mwita
i need the answers please
Mwita
auguste com't he who coined the term sociology
AMINU
Development sociology is the study of the causes and consequences of economic change in society. ... Economic sociology consistently turns to economic development as the natural setting for tests of its theories. Development Sociology investigates the practices and processes of social change.
AMINU
The emergence of sociology traces back to the eighteenth century up to present day. Johnson (1998) suggests that in summary, the rise and development of sociology is based on political, economic, demographic, social and scientific changes
AMINU
theories of development in sociology The main objective of this document is to synthesize the main aspects of the four major theories of development: modernization, dependency, world- systems and globalization. These are the principal theoretical explanations to interpret development efforts carried
AMINU
theories of development in sociology The main objective of this document is to synthesize the main aspects of the four major theories of development: modernization, dependency, world- systems and globalization. These are the principal theoretical explanations to interpret development efforts carried
AMINU
basic tenants of islam
Raksha Reply
what are forms of governments
Nyiko Reply
if you kill someone in self defense is it a crime
Clara Reply
no its a self defence if u kill someone in self defense by mistake its a self defense but if you kill someone in self defense and you defense your self then if u kill him its a murdered ..... and murder is a crime... 😊
Hassan
4. Explain in detail the various factors those may affect rural development under local cultural settings. any buddy know this answer plz sent mein
Hassan Reply
hi, is this to get help with exam questions?
Bri Reply
Yap
Mustafa
what is basic structure of culture
Yasir Reply
(1) group of people (2) similar historical experiences (3) consensus on values, rewards and punishments (4) identification of their group as distinct from others
Sourabh
1
Nyiko
The structure of culture follows that of human life in its evolution, activities, and interests. ... It would seem that the forms of communication dictate the structure of culture, language being naturally the most privileged but not exclusive means by which the communication process can work.
Ritu
the social sciences, social structure  is the patterned social arrangements in society that are both emergent  from and determinant of the actions of society .Likewise, society is believed to be grouped into structurally-related groups or sets of role, with different function, meaning and purpose.
Sonam
Through which sociological perspective we can analyze the pakistani society
Salman Reply
It is used within a paper to clarify or expand on a point made, or to give credit to the sources used to support that point. A. Notes B. Thesis C. Article D. None of these what is the answer.?
Sikandar
Article
sayan
agree , people often think of street crime
Anastasia Reply
absolutely right
Ritu
may be they think only what they want to think or see..
Ritu
4. Explain in detail the various factors those may affect rural development under local cultural settings. any buddy know this answer
Hassan

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Source:  OpenStax, Introduction to sociology 2e. OpenStax CNX. Jan 20, 2016 Download for free at http://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11762/1.6
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