INTERSECTIONS OF TECHNOLOGY & PLACE

Erika Polson, Rowan Wilken, Germaine Halegoua, Bryce Renninger, Adrienne Russell

Abstract


The papers presented here draw from new ways of thinking about place, with a particular focus on interrelations of space and place with media technologies and practices. Following from Jansson’s (2009: 308) suggestion that scholars consider how communication and geography intersect, in order to analyze “how space produces communication and how communication produces space”, this panel brings together a series of research at this nexus.

The panel begins at the macro-level, with a paper on how ‘smart cities’ struggle to create meaning places that feel ‘organic’ and then moves to a series of case studies within and across urban scales, with a set of papers that, in order: critically considers efforts by tech companies to become the arbiters of place, with a specific look at Foursquare; evaluates how geo-social media can produce space through a hybrid of online and offline interaction, focusing on meetup.com; traces arguments against social technologies as negatively affecting traditional urban places, by looking at critics who say ‘Grindr killed the gay bar’; and finally, how activist/journalists participating in a place-based action – the Paris Climate Summit – use hybrid tools to form new media spaces.

Taken together, these papers will contribute a fruitful conversation about how increasingly sophisticated convergence of online and offline technologies and practices are creating new ways of conceiving, organizing, controlling, monetizing, and inhabiting space and place.


Keywords


geo-social media, Place-making, location technologies, media space, smart cities

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