UCI Analysis of Identity and Social Presence of Dwayne Johnson Essay

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2000 word short essay based on the first part of the book. Answer ONE of the questions below.

Essay Questions

1. Social Media: online and offline groups

In Chapter Two, Lindgren argues that the social is distinguished by systems of rules and resources that are constantly reproduced, negotiated and shifting. Choose a group on a social media site (Facebook group, Instagram hashtag, WeChat group, Twitter hashtag, Discord server, YouTube channel etc) and compare this social group with a similar, related offline social group (university club, church group, sports team, etc.). What rules and resources are in play in these groups? How are online and offline different, and how are they related? Are traditional (offline) rules of social group formation at work in online social networks too?

2. Social Media: social media groups

Choose a group on a social media site (Facebook group, Instagram hashtag, WeChat group, Twitter hashtag, Discord server, YouTube channel etc). What holds this group together? What rules and resources are in play in this group? Using examples, what forms of self-presentation, social action and social presence are available and used by this group on this platform?

3. Cyber Optimism vs Cyber Pessimism

In Chapter Three Lindgren observes two contrasting positions in media scholarship that apply to some writing on the emergence of the internet – cyber optimism and cyber pessimism, both of which tend towards technological determinism. Compare and contrast (Links to an external site.)Nick Couldry and Ulises Mejias (Links to an external site.)‘ (2019) The costs of connection: how data is colonising human life and appropriating it for capitalism. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press and David Gauntlett’s Making is connecting: The social power of creativity, from craft and knitting to digital everything (Links to an external site.), Cambridge: Polity. Evaluate these books. Are these writers making cyber pessimistic and/or cyber optimistic arguments? Are they technological determinists? How convincing are their arguments?

4. Identity

Analyse a celebrity, sportsman/woman or an influencer’s public identities across two or three media platforms (Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, livestreams, blog, film, television, newspapers, magazines, film clips etc.). How is this persona written into being? Analyse how identity and social presence are expressed differently across the platforms. Analyse modes and practices of self-presentation in play. How are persona, race, ethnicity, gender and other forms of cultural identity performed?

5. Communities and Networks

Using Lindgren’s distinction between communities and networks in Chapter Five, choose a social media site you use (Facebook, WeChat, Instagram, Twitter, etc) and analyse it as a medium for community AND networking. In what ways does it express gemeinschaft and imagined community? In what ways does it mediate weak ties?

Filename should be question number & name (e.g. Q1 Social Media or G5 Communities and Networks). The file should be in doc, rtf or pdf format. Use 12pt font at least 1.6 linespacing. Use APA v6 or APA v7 referencing. You are expected to draw on research beyond the text book.

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