Sui01
Digitally dwelling: the challenges of digital ethnology and folklore and the methods to overcome them

Convenors:
Coppélie Cocq (Umeå University)
Robert Glenn Howard (University of Wisconsin-Madison)
Stream:
Sui generis
Location:
VG 3.105
Start time:
29 March, 2017 at 8:30
Session slots:
2

Short abstract:

Whether in a tent or in front of a screen, researchers of ethnology and folklore have long sought to inhabit the same spaces as those they seek to better understand. But what barriers present themselves to researchers seeking to "dwell" in a digital world?

Long abstract:

What does it mean to "dwell" in a digital community? Or inhabit a network location? Do we dwell together as we access different apps on the bus to work? Or do we dwell together in the synthetic spaces inside a virtual reality helmet? Participants in this panel will offer specific cases of challenges they faced dwelling in digital cultures and explore methodical fixes that attempt to address them. The pace at which the manifold uses of the internet and of other digital and mobile technologies are constantly evolving means that the nature of the digital worlds we inhabit together are always changing. In this environment of constant change, the researcher is always being presented with new challenges to the perspectives, methods and tools they have used before. The omnipresence and intensification of the digital challenge our perceptions of localities, presence and encounters. As a consequence, methods for online research need to redefine concepts such as the "field" and fieldwork, participant observation, interaction, etc. This panel will investigate methods in research on digital culture, digital practices and the impact and the implications of the digital in our lives by asking participants to present specific cases of problems they have faced in their digital research and the fixes they developed to address whether successful or not We invite contributions approaching methods and methodologies in digital folklore and ethnology. Topics can include for example, but not only: - Collection and fabrication of data - Big and small data - Ethics - Ethnography