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The University of Southampton
Archaeologies of Media and Technology Research group

Social Network Platforms and Digital Existence - Seminar Event

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14:30 - 16:00
6 December 2016
Lecture Theatre A Winchester School of Art

For more information regarding this event, please email Professor Jussi Parikka at .

Event details

Greg Elmer and Ganaele Langlois, two theorists of culture and social media, present their current work that addresses key topics in digital culture. Issues of social media labour are expanded to a focus on the “political economy of the psycho-social” as one key aspect of the current key platforms, such as Facebook. The event is organised in collaboration with AMT – Archaeologies of Media & Technology - research group. The talks are chaired by professor Jussi Parikka.


Prospecting Facebook: Beyond the Economy of Attention

Professor Greg Elmer, Ryerson University

This presentation questions the 'industrial' worker critique of social media labour, and its accompanying economy of attention framework, in an age of big data speculation and financialization. Focusing on the social networking company Facebook, the presentation will investigate the writing and rewriting of the company's IPO prospectus in an effort to understand the dramatic drop in advertising revenues since the NASDAQ stock flotation. The presentation posits a speculative theoretical framework to understand the deleterious effects of the emergent business models and revenue streams of Facebook.


Exploring the machinery of digital existence

Ganaele Langlois, Assistant Professor of Communication, York University

The past few years have been marked by the rise of a new critique of digital existence based on the recognition that mainstream digital technologies of the self articulate the technical, the economic, and the psycho-social in ways that radically undermine and short-circuit processes of self-production and exploration. From Stiegler’s exploration of de-individuation through explorations of how capitalism mines the psyche (Lazzarato, 2004; Bifo, 2009) to software studies’ investigation of how social networking platforms shape conditions of existence, we are currently seeing the emergence of a political economy of the psycho-social. This presentation investigates the parameters and machinery of this new political economy and its consequences for practices of the self.

Speaker information

Greg Elmer,Bell Media Research Chair & Professor of Professional Communication at Ryerson University,An award winning media producer and director Greg has also published 8 books on topics ranging from surveillance and security to data politics and media financialization.

Ganaele Langlois,Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication Studies at York University (Toronto, Canada) and Associate Director of the Infoscape Lab (,Her research interests lie in media theory, philosophy of communication, critical theory and new media. Recent publications include Compromised Data: From Social Media to Big Data (2015, co-edited, Bloomsbury.)

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