Session Title:

  • Without Sin: Taboo and Freedom within Digital Media

Presentation Title:

  • Untitled




  • Chair Per­son: Donna Leish­man
    Pre­sen­ters: Gor­don Hush, Sue Gold­ing, Don Rit­ter, Kriss Ravetto-Bi­a­gi­oli & Sheena Calvert

    Framed by a con­text of in­creas­ing media anx­i­ety over the vol­ume of usage and the na­ture of so­cial net­work­ing web­sites (Green­field 2009), this panel will broadly ex­plore the roots of this fear and the role of dig­i­tal media and so­cial de­vel­op­ment, specif­i­cally in­ter­ro­gat­ing prac­tices of so­cial iden­tity and con­tem­po­rary ex­pe­ri­ences of re­al­ity/fic­tion. Fol­low­ing as­so­ci­ated fears there has been an in­creased pres­sure from the Amer­i­can Med­ical As­so­ci­a­tion (AMA) for the Amer­i­can Psy­chi­atric As­so­ci­a­tion (APA) to in­clude video game ad­dic­tion as a sub-type of in­ter­net ad­dic­tion, along with sex­ual pre­oc­cu­pa­tions and e-mail/text mes­sag­ing in the up­com­ing 2012 Di­ag­nos­tic and Sta­tis­ti­cal Man­ual of Men­tal Dis­or­ders (DSM-V), the stan­dard di­ag­nos­tic text used by psy­chi­a­trists world­wide. The re­al­ity of an un-chartable (dark) In­ter­net, the ac­knowl­edged rate of change and the sig­nif­i­cantly prob­lem­atic lack of any so­ci­etal sanc­tion or pro­hi­bi­tion (when surf­ing the In­ter­net) gives ‘us’ more space and op­por­tu­nity to ex­plore taboo and re­pres­sion.
    Panel pa­pers will ex­plore the no­tion of the moral econ­omy of human ac­tiv­ity and how this is re­flected in “moral pan­ics” and the space be­tween sub­jec­tive ex­pe­ri­ence (con­scious­ness) and the con­tem­po­rary en­vi­ron­ment (Hush), styl­is­tics of (sex­ual) dif­fer­ence (Gold­ing), ma­nip­u­la­tion within dig­i­tal iden­tity con­struc­tion (Rit­ter), re-ex­plor­ing The More Knowl­edge­able Other and so­cial de­vel­op­ment (Leish­man), and role of tac­ti­cal anonymity within con­tem­po­rary Net ac­tivism (Ravetto-Bi­a­gi­oli).
    Ques­tions the panel will raise:

    1. When con­sid­er­ing dig­i­tal media and so­cial de­vel­op­ment: what are the un­der­ly­ing causes of this new sense of fear?
    2. How is so­cial iden­tity con­structed today / Has our ex­pe­ri­ence of re­al­ity/ fic­tion changed?
    3. How does the in­trin­sic vari­abil­ity of media usage af­fect our sense of self/ con­scious­ness?
    4. What is au­then­tic and what con­sti­tutes healthy when en­gag­ing with dig­i­tal media and the In­ter­net?