Event Information:

  • Tue

    [Talk] Jessa Lingel: Uncommon People: Digital technologies and the struggle for community

    12:00pm-01:00pmNQ 3100 (The Ehrlicher Room), North Quad, 105 S. State St. Ann Arbor MI 48109


    Everyone is welcome -  light lunch will be served on a first-come-first-served basis; make sure to RSVP, so that we will be prepared (add to calendar).


    More than a decade before Facebook launched, body modification enthusiasts were running their own social media platform, drawing users interested in piercings, tattoos and other modifications. In New Jersey’s longstanding punk scene, music enthusiasts have honed methods for simultaneously publicizing shows and evading police, using a range of technologies, some far older than many of the scene’s participants. Brooklyn’s booming drag community has revitalized New York’s drag culture, bringing an assortment of hacks and workarounds for crafting drag personas online. Drawing on years of mixed methods field work, including ethnography, focus groups and archival textual analysis, this talk examines the capacity of digital technologies to support countercultural communities, with the goal of exposing the multi-faceted nature of online life and to expose wider implications of how internet technologies are reshaping social interactions.


    Jessa Lingel is an assistant professor at the Annenberg School of Communication at the University of Pennsylvania. Prior to that, she was a post doctoral research fellow at Microsoft Research New England, working with the Social Media Collective. She received her Ph.D. in communication and information from Rutgers University. She has an MLIS from Pratt Institute and an M.A. from New York University. Her research interests include information inequalities and technological distributions of power.