Course convenor: Dr Alison Powell

This course provides an historical, theoretical and methodological basis through which to assess the social and cultural transformations related to digital media infrastructures and related social practices. It focuses on the materiality and affordances of new media, as well as on the social transformations that have co-evolved, including open source media production practices and peer to peer organizing practices. It critiques and questions the assumptions about the transformation of social and cultural life but also attempts to help students develop conceptual strategies beyond critique. A central focus of the course will be the claims made about the implication for collaborative work and culture of the qualities of digital data, considered through topics including but not limited to: peer to peer and open source cultural movements, the political economy and ecology of digital media, the politics of algorithms, remembering and forgetting, as well as the shift towards 'data as media' and its implications for media publics and media power. Students will be invited to consider the broader contexts of all of these media futures, including those related to policy and governance.