Tag: internet

A&SM#4 Full Programme

We are very pleased to confirm the full programme (see below) for the fourth Affect and Social Media one day conference at UEL’s USS building in Stratford, east London on Nov 7th.

The 2018 event marks the publication of the first Affect and Social Media book (Rowman & Littlefield International).

Together with 7 panels, featuring cutting edge international research and curated sensorium performances, there is a special keynote by Patricia Ticineto Clough followed by a keynote panel and audience Q&A.

The event will culminate with the A&SM book launch, live music from The Indelicates and refreshments.

A&SM#4 is free, but advance online registration is essential to gain access to UEL’s USS campus building.

To register and see more information on the conference visit: https://viralcontagion.blog/affect-social-media4/

Affect and Social Media#4 Programme

University Square Stratford, east London, UK, 7th Nov 2018, 10am-10pm

Download PDF Version

Time. Location

All Rooms TBC

Actual Occasion
10.00-11.10am Entrance to the University Stratford Square Campus Building Registration

Please note that before entering the campus all attendees must register online: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/affect-social-media4-notifications-from-the-technological-nonconscious-tickets-46972453874


Room USG.17 Main Lecture Theatre

Welcome to A&SM#4 by Tony D Sampson

plus Sensorium One

Break 15mins  

Parallel Sessions A

Choice of three panels

Panel 1: USG.17

Panel 2: USG19 or US2.30

Panel 3: USG20 or US2.31

Panel 1 Chaired by Greg Seigworth


Lisa Blackman (Goldsmiths, UK) Haunted Data


Camilla Møhring Reestorff (Aarhus University, Denmark) Affective Governmentalization: Backlashes again the #Metoo-movement in Denmark


Heather Radwan Jaber (University of Pennsylvania, USA) Sexual harassment and social media in Egypt: Reorienting the resonance machine

Panel 2 Chaired by Darren Ellis


Vered Elishar-Malka & Yaron Ariel (Yezreel Valley College, Israel) Social media, Legacy media, and the public, in the Trump(ing) era


Suzanne van Geuns (University of Toronto, Canada) Rational Virtuosity and Religious Promise: Aspiring toward Jordan Peterson in Reddit Debates


Fadi Safieddine, (Queen Mary University, UK)

Factors contributing to the continuing failure in combating the spread of fake news on Social Media

Panel 3 Chaired by Ian Tucker


Maximilian Stobbe, (Freie Universität, Berlin, Germany) My Reaction Can Be Summed up by the Guy at 2:23!” – YouTube Reaction Videos as Affective Practices


Orsolya Bajusz (Corvinus University of Budapest, Hungary) The affective dynamics of online shaming and liberal moral outrage


Fulla Abdul-Jabbar (School of the Art Institute of Chicago, USA) Why did you cry when you read that poem

Break 5mins Find next panel
Parallel Session B


Choice of two panels

Panel 4 in USG. 19/20 or USG. 19

Panel 5 in USG.20 or US2.31


Panel 4 Chaired by Darren Ellis


Angie Voela (University of East London, UK) Fragile masculinities and contemporary psycho-power: The Case of InCel


Ali Lara (University of East London, UK) Affective Modulation in Positive Psychology’s Regime of Happiness


Trenton Lee (University of Westminster, UK) Feeling the Burn: Effect of Digital Capitalism on the Mental Health of Creators


Panel 5 Chaired by Stephen Maddison


Sarah Cefai (London College of Communication, UK) Stupid in the Moment: Excavating the Patriarchal Nonconscious of Humiliation


Christina Riley (George Mason University, Virginia), The Affective Flux of Feminist Digital Collectives or What Happened to the Women’s March of 2017


Annelot Prins (Freie Universität Berlin, Germany) How Much Do You Want To Meet Taylor Swift? The Cruel Optimism of Online
Fan Labour





In USG.19/20 and/or the Foyer

The Sensorium 2

The Actual Occasion – a silent disco with Mikey B Georgeson 


Parallel Session C


Choice of two panels

Panel 6 in USG. 19/20 or USG. 19

Panel 7 in USG.20 or US2.31


Panel 6 Chaired by Ali Lara


Antonia Hernández (Concordia University, Canada) The Simple, the Compound, and the Spurious: Assemblages of Bots and Humans on a Sexcam Platform


Elena Pilipets (Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt, Austria) Sleeping with Netflix: The (Dis)Connected Body of Serial Binge Viewer


Andreas Schellewald (University of Edinburgh, UK) Going down the algorithmic rabbit hole: approaching affective engagement in montage videos on social media platforms


Panel 7 Chaired by Stephen Maddison


Vered Elishar-Malka, Dana Weimann-Saks & Yaron Ariel (Yezreel Valley College, Israel) The Secret Online World of Women: Intimacy and Exposure among Women’s Closed Facebook Groups


Josie Barnard (Middlesex University, UK) The Multimodal Writer



4.05-4.15pm 10min break
Session D

4.15-6.45.pm in Main Lecture Theatre USG.17

Keynote Session

Patricia Ticineto Clough: The User Unconscious: Embodiment and Thought

Audience Q&A

Keynote Panel

Opening response by Gregory J. Seigworth (Millersville)

Keynote Panel

Jessica Ringrose (UCL), Amit Rai (Queen Mary), Rebecca Coleman (Goldsmiths), Darren Ellis and Ian Tucker (East London)

Audience Q&A with panel

Session D chaired by Tony D Sampson


USG.19/20 and USS Foyer

Affect and Social Media book launch & Sensorium Performance 3 including

Live performance by The Indelicates





Why can’t social media delete race hate?

Interesting (and concerning) interview with YouTube spokesperson yesterday on BBC Radio. Seems some far right race hate material is still online a year after notification unlike IS type propaganda and “radicalization” videos that are taken down in a matter of hours – Opening up questions about what markers are used in machine learning technologies, as well as human decision making processes. Seems that the default argument by Zuckerberg et al that these AI technologies will solve the problems of hate groups on social media (and fake news) is perhaps not stacking up.

YouTube: Not removing far-right video ‘missed the mark’


More opinion in The Guardian today on Facebook, and why, after Charlottesville, big tech can’t delete white supremacists?


Are We All Addicts Now? Digital Dependence – book out now!

I have a chapter in this book (co-edited by Vanessa Bartlett & Henrietta Bowden-Jones) called ‘Tap My Head and Mike My Brain’: Neuromarketing and Digital Addiction – a nod (endnote) goes to Jussi Parikka’s Pynchon reference in his review of The Assemblage Brain.

I’m also taking part in the Are We All Addicts Now? symposium at Central St Martins (University of the Arts London) in collaboration with London Laser. The date for this event is yet to be fully confirmed, but likely to be at 6.30pm on Tuesday 7 November.

The book is published by Liverpool University Press: https://liverpooluniversitypress.co.uk/products/100809

It’s part of an amazing looking exhibit at Furtherfield Gallery in London between 16 September – 12 November 2017: http://furtherfield.org/programmes/exhibition/are-we-all-addicts-now

Here’s the blurb

Are We All Addicts Now? Digital Dependence is an artist-led enquiry by Katriona Beales into digital hyper-connectivity and the normalization of addictive behaviours through our everyday interactions with digital devices. While internet addiction is not yet considered an official psychiatric disorder, it is gaining increased recognition as a behavioral phenomenon in both scientific study and the popular press. This project is the first interdisciplinary exploration of this burgeoning diagnostic territory. The book combines visual and textual research, including artistic works from Katriona Beales and Fiona MacDonald : Feral Practice, alongside essays from contributors in the fields of anthropology, digital culture, psychology and philosophy. Informed by the latest scientific research, the book acknowledges the increasing difficulty many people experience in controlling their online habits. At the same time, it also thinks beyond the biological model of internet addiction toward the social and political dimensions that shape everyday online activities and habit-forming behaviour. This book is co-edited by curator Vanessa Bartlett and medical doctor and neuroscience researcher Henrietta Bowden-Jones. It is published to coincide with a major exhibition of new artwork by Katriona Beales at Furtherfield, London.

The below text is taken from Vanessa Bartlett’s blog.

Are We All Addicts Now? Digital Dependence… new book goes to press

For the past two years I have been working in collaboration with artist Katriona Beales on her Welcome Trust funded project Are We All Addicts Now? The project developed off the back of her 2015 work White Matter, which I commissioned as part of my Group Therapy exhibition with FACT (Foundation for Art and Creative Technology). The project will culminate in a major exhibition of new artwork by Katriona at Furtherfield, London this September.

Are We All Addicts Now?  is an artist-led enquiry into digital hyper-connectivity and the normalization of addictive behaviours through our everyday interactions with digital devices. While internet addiction is not yet considered an official psychiatric disorder, it is gaining increased recognition as a behavioral phenomenon in both scientific study and the press.

I have edited the Are We All Addicts Now? book in collaboration with medical doctor and neuroscience researcher Henrietta Bowden-Jones. It combines visual and textual research, including artistic works from Katriona, alongside essays from contributors in the fields of anthropology, digital culture, psychology and philosophy. Informed by the latest scientific research, the book acknowledges the increasing difficulty many people experience in controlling their online habits. At the same time, it also thinks beyond the biological model of internet addiction toward the social and political dimensions that shape everyday online activities and habit-forming behaviour. This book is the first interdisciplinary exploration of this burgeoning diagnostic territory.

The book also features some amazing visuals by designer Stëfan Schäfer (see featured image).

List of contributors:

Katriona Beales
Ruth Catlow
Mark D. Griffiths with Daria J. Kuss & Halley M. Pontes
Fiona MacDonald : Feral Practice
Gerald Moore
Emily Rosamond
Tony Sampson
Theodora Sutton

It’s due to be published on 15 September and is available from the Liverpool University Press website

Internetes mémek – (poszt?)memetika

For any Hungarians on this network (or those of you clever enough to read Hungarian)… a translation of Contagion Theory Beyond the Microbe is included in this special issue of Apertúra on (post)memetic theory. There’s an option to read some of the other abstracts in English, which I have copied below…

Link to full issue here: http://uj.apertura.hu/

Tamás Csordás – Nóra Gőbel: Brands in memes. Perception of LEGO and Barbie toy brands through internet memes

Internet memes are fresh and up-to-date elements of the internet culture, and in this respect show many similarities with traditional gossip. Memes are becoming an integral part of the internet folk’s everyday vocabulary and part of consumer culture. They can thus be considered a relevant source of consumer insights, meanings, even in corporate contexts, and can thus be employed in marketing communications. In a netnographic study and content analysis of 541 internet memes related to the Lego and Barbie toy brands we explore and characterize their online user perceptions and the implications thereof for marketing.

Rita Glózer: Meme Theory in the Discourse of New Media Studies 

The adaptation of the sociobiological notion meme in the social sciences provide an intense and more precise explanation of the anonymous, variable contents (texts, pictures, music pieces, and videos modified digitally) spreading in New Media. Considering the investigations in contemporary directions of ethnography and cultural studies, the question arises if the memetic approach offers more or perhaps better research opportunities, and if it is more than a recent scientific metaphor at all. In my study I confront the approaches based on the concepts of Internet folklore and participatory culture, and the meme theory matured by Limor Shifman in media studies. I reveal common features and differences between accents of the three approaches, which enable their combination. Lastly, by using some illustrative examples of memetic videos I demonstrate how these approaches can be combined.

Imre Mátyus: ’Dad what’s a blue screen of death?’ Internet meme images as carriers of collective identity

The technological context of contemporary participatory culture provides a wide range of possibilities for sharing ideas, opinions, and experience with the appropriate audiences in a simple and ecological manner. The appropriation of these possibilities can be observed in groups created and maintained at social networking sites. The research of online (virtual) communities has been a crucial area for social sciences since the 1990s. This article joins in with this research tradition by examining the role of internet meme images in a closed community – namely the international Ubuntu user group of Facebook. I investigate the values of community represented in image-based memes created or shared by the members. What kind of content gets represented, in what format, in what modalities?

Norbert Merkovity: Donald Trump and the attention. Memes as tools for attention-based politics.

Donald Trump is one of today’s most divisive politicians. This study does not argue with this statement, but it is studying how he uses features of memes in his Twitter communication in order to attract, maximize, and direct the attention of followers and journalists. Over the adjectives attached to the person’s name, the used words, and the excessive use of exclamation marks becomes clear that Trump’s Twitter communication actually follows the logic of memes. However, this tactic also sets the focus of analysis to attention-based politics and the phenomena around it (network logic, self-mediatization, popularization and populist political communication). The main finding of the study is that Trump takes advantage of his billionaire-celebrity status, as well as the weaknesses of the American presidential primary system and democratic processes to forge political capital for himself.

Kate M. Miltner: There’s no place for lulz on LOLCats: the role of genre, gender, and group identity in the interpretation and enjoyment of an Internet meme

Internet memes are an increasingly widespread form of vernacular communication. This paper uses LOLCats, one of the most popular and enduring Internet memes, as a case study for exploring some of the social and cultural forces that contribute to memes’ popularity, both individually and as a whole. A qualitative audience study of 36 LOLCat enthusiasts indicates that individual memes can be used by multiple (and vastly different) groups for identity work as well as in–group boundary establishment and policing. This study also shows that as memes travel from subculture to the mainstream, they can be sites of contestation and conflict amongst different stakeholders looking to legitimize their claim to the canonical form.

Róbert Pölcz: Internet memes, viruses, (post-?)memetics – a short introduction with notes on research history 

Richard Dawkins coined the term meme in 1976 as an analogous notion to the gene. He defined it as a unit of information that spreads in culture through copying. He attributed a central function to the meme in the construction of culture and also argued that it has agency, the ability to act with an effect. Representatives of the memetic school have received major criticism due to their mechanistic, reductionist and epidemological approaches to culture, which finally lead to the decline of the approach by the 1st decade of the 21st century. Parallel to this process the meme has acquired a new meaning: currently it refers to pieces of spreading cultural content modified and shared on the Internet. Although researches interpreting this new phenomenon partially inherited the vocabulary and argumentation of memetics, their approach is entirely new as they research internet memes along their characteristics as genre.

Limor Shifman: Defining Internet memes.

The fourth chapter in Limor Shifman’s Memes in Digital Culture addresses the problem of interpreting memes. She introduces a three-dimensional framework, which identifies three separate aspects of cultural content: the content, the form and the stance. The first dimension relates to the content of the text and the thoughts and ideologies referenced by them, while the second dimension represents the physical incarnation of the message, which we can perceive through our senses. The third dimension – introduced here for the first time – is the meta-communicational aspect of the meme, and it relates to the addresser’s relationship to the text, the linguistic codes, the addressees and other potential speakers. Based on these three dimensions Shifman provides a new definition of Internet memes. In order to exemplify how these separate dimensions can become subjects of imitation, Shifman analyses three popular memes, the Leave Britney Alone meme, the Pepper-Spraying Cop meme, and response videos to the It gets better YouTube media campaign.

Bradley E. Wiggins and G. Bret Bowers: Memes as genre: A structurational analysis of the memescape.

A tenable genre development of Internet memes is introduced in three categories to describe memetic transformation: spreadable media, emergent meme, and meme. We argue that memes are remixed, iterated messages which are rapidly spread by members of participatory digital culture for the purpose of continuing a conversation. We understand that memes develop from emergent memes, which we define as altered or remixed spreadable media. We have adapted and modified Jenkins’ term “spreadable media” to refer to original or non-parodied messages. Our analysis benefits from the inclusion of Anthony Giddens’ structuration theory to aid in understanding how memes as artifacts of participatory digital culture are created. Our genre development of memes demonstrates the generative capacity for continued memetic transformation and for participation among members of digital culture. We use structuration to position these dynamic components as the core of a duality of structure for Internet memes.

And here’s the abstract for Beyond the Microbe in Hungarian!

Fertőzéselmélet a mikrobákon túl

Bevezetés: négy megjegyzésA tanulmány négy felvetést mutat, amelyek a kommunikáció virális jellegét a fertőzéselméletek tükrében gondolják újra. Mindegyik felvetés célja, hogy megvizsgálja az emberi és nem emberi közti analógia természetét, az emocionális vektorokból és affektív, fertőző találkozásokból álló „társadalmi forma” tarde-i, monadológiai értelmezésén keresztül. Az első felvetés tárgya az, hogy mi terjed valójában a megfertőzhető közösségi médián keresztül. Bár a félelemérzet a politikailag motivált fertőzések alapvető tényezőjének tűnik, vannak más, figyelmen kívül hagyott affektusok is, mint például a szeretet, amelyek szintén ragadósak. A második felvetésben a tanulmány szembeszáll azzal a determinista gondolkodással, amely szerint mindent, ami terjed, mechanisztikus szemléletű megközelítéssel kell értelmezni. Ez jelenik meg a mikrobák és a mémek analógiájában ugyanúgy, mint a hálózatelmélet azon törekvésében, hogy ágenciával ruházza fel a létrejövő, kollektív társadalmi tudatot. A harmadik felvetés megkérdőjelezi a hálózatok epidemiológiai diagramként való értelmezését, amennyiben a tér csomópontokon és határokon keresztül történő sztenderdizálása kiiktatja a járványokkal együtt járó események és balesetek időbeliségét. Az esszé utolsó lépésben arra a sajátos tarde-i irányvonalra fókuszál, amely a kortárs kapitalista üzleti vállalkozásban nyilvánul meg, és amely – úgy tűnik – azáltal kívánja a fogyasztó hangulatát kihasználni és döntését irányítani, hogy az emberi és a nem emberi affektív fertőzés alapvetően tudattalan neurológiai abszorpciójára épít.


#Affect and Social Media 3.0: Final Call and Registration Now Open

Announcing the final call for academic presentations and artworks for #Affect and Social Media 3.0. A one day conference and sensorium art show at UEL on Thursday 25th May 2017 at the University of East London’s Dockland Campus.

Confirmed keynote speaker: Prof Jessica Ringrose (UCL)

We are also pleased to announce that registration for this event is now open.

Both the call and link to registration are here: https://www.uel.ac.uk/Events/2017/05/Affect-and-Social-Media-3

Please note that everyone attending must register in advance. Thanks!

£3 for external students

£5 for external workers

Free for UEL staff and students

Free for nonhumans, posthumans etc.

Best wishes to all,