Christian Fuchs. 2014. Social Media. A Critical Introduction.
Paperback ISBN 9781446257319
Hardcover ISBN 9781446257302
Now more than ever, we need to understand social media – the good as well as the bad. We need critical knowledge that helps us to navigate the controversies and contradictions of this complex digital media landscape. Only then can we make informed judgements about what’s happening in our media world, and why.
Showing the reader how to ask the right kinds of questions about social media, Christian Fuchs takes us on a journey across social media, delving deep into case studies on Google, Facebook, Twitter, WikiLeaks and Wikipedia. The result lays bare the structures and power relations at the heart of our media landscape.
This book is the essential, critical guide for understanding social media and for all students of media studies and sociology. Readers will never look at social media the same way again.
1. What is a Critical Introduction to Social Media? 1
I. FOUNDATIONS 29
2. What is Social Media? 31
3. Social Media as Participatory Culture 52
4. Social Media and Communication Power 69
II. APPLICATIONS 95
5. The Power and Political Economy of Social Media 97
6. Google: Good or Evil Search Engine? 126
7. Facebook: A Surveillance Threat to Privacy? 153
8. Twitter and Democracy: A New Public Sphere? 176
9. WikiLeaks: Can We Make Power Transparent? 210
10. Wikipedia: A New Democratic Form of Collaborative Work and Production? 235
III. FUTURES 251
11. Conclusion: Social Media and its Alternatives – Towards a Truly Social Media 253