Outline For Final Paper

Here is an outline I have for Jeff’s final paper. I usually don’t work so far in advance, but I have a huge usability consulting project this week, Jeff’s paper, and a paper for Erik, so I figured I should try to get a bit ahead. It is a bit rough right now, but I think this the general structure I am going to use.

I also have alot of cool structural findings on why people may use FB in unexpected ways in order to represent/build/play with their identities. I doubt I will have room for this, but if I do, that will go in at the end. Please let me know of any suggestions or questions you have.

· Intro & thesis paragraph

o Intro to social networks

o What they are used for

o How identity is constructed in them

o research talks about the medium/design influences the online behavior of the users and how the design of social networking software influences the way a person constructs their profile online

o I want to take this argument one step further, and say that the way people act, away from that given medium, is also influenced by the design of the social networking site

o In this paper I am going to illustrate this by talking about how Facebook influences practices relating to photography.

o The major influence I am going to talk about his how Facebook influences people to take photos of people and this changes how people’s photo-related behavior

o Of course this change isn’t the only reason for these changing factor’s

§ coupled with digital photography

§ many other & of course it is reflexive


· Look at the way Facebook’s interface privelages photos of people in FB

o Talk about how our identities are heavily tied to our social networking profile, specifically our photos

§ More info

o Tagged photos in privileged spot

§ Privileged location and paradigm among the contents of Facebook

§ Tagged photos counted

§ More photos of you the better

· More photos is more social capital

· Facebook even counts them for you

· I know how popular a user is, even before you look at their photos

o Photos are also capital to prove you are ‘good’ friends with someone in real life. This is because the links are unnuanced: there is no distinction made between a close relative and a near stranger one chatted. Having photos tagged of you with the people is a way to do this

§ Out and don’t get photographed, it is like you are not even therr

§ Simply appearing in public with one’s acquaintances is a display of connection. These displays serve various purposes. The high status name-dropping may be a deliberate ploy to impress the listener of the speaker’s importance or ability to effect some action”

§ Having photos that prove you are friends with someone is also really important because knowing that someone is connected to people one already knows and trusts is one of the most basic ways of establishing trust with a new relationship [13, 14]

§ This allows you to make new connections on with people that they know or are friends with. Which some research cite as the most important part of social networks.

o Another reason to get in to photos is it is easier to find if tagged – you were out with a bunch of people and the person with you wants to find you through facebook. finding you in an album is easy, finding you in 200 friends is not as easy. if you were there, but not photographed, you were not there. This helps you to make new connections, something that some researchers (this paper) cite as a primary reason for social networking sites.

§ Feld [10] used the term focus to refer to the situations, interests, and individuals, etc, that bring people together and shape the dynamics of network formation. (insight) A photo album of a trip or night out can be a focus, allowing all the members of the group to add each other as friends and build a social network. If not photographed, it is as if you were not there

    • You are representing yourself to all these people who are your old friends and acquaintances and weak ties, which is very important
      • The lifeworld of people looking at the photos acquate certain things with being good, interesting, social, etc. It is important to represent yourself to these people well.
      • Wellman observed that a typical personal network included 3—6 very close and intimate ties, 5—15 less close but still significant and active ties, and about 1000 more distant (insight) this means all of the weaker and more distant ties on your Facebook account judge you through profile/photos

§ These photos matter too, because research says that Facebook is a way to keep in touch with old friends who you are spatially separated from, these photos inform them how you are doing and how you are living. Photos by you, but also photos by other people prove that you are social.

§ For many, Facebook provided a way to keep in touch with high school friends and acquaintances. As depicted in Figure 2, students report that the primary audiences for their profiles are high school friends and people they know from an MSU context.

    • Other people photograph you and tag you says that you were out and about but you don’t care about Facebook, but you are just social without trying to show it off
        • Thanks to the syntagm of the photo tagging process that does not make you approve or do any work. Actually removing photos shows that you ‘care’
        • Facebook shows differentiation of who took the photos

· So how does this all change behavior?

    • The syntagm of uploading photos to Facebook is first taking the photos and later uploading them, so it would seem that the uploading of photos would not influence the way people take photos because it happens at a chronologically later time.

o The reason that Facebook can alter the way that its members act in everyday life has to do with Jerome Bruner’s idea of the double edge of experience. This double edge of experience states that when we are going through any experience we are always thinking about how we will later narrate or present it to other people and then this changes the experience at hand based on how it will be presented(McCarthy & Write). Due to Facebook’s ability to easily share photos with a large community of friends, it has become the preferred medium to share an experience for many people. Therefore, when a Facebook member having an experience they may be thinking about how they will later share the experience on Facebook.

    • Although this is usually an internal process, on occasion people actually say things out loud
      • Jen and Jon are walking down the street and stop and say ‘Hey, let’s take a photo. This will make for a great Facebook photo.”
  • Specific Examples of How Facebook Changes Behavior
    • The overall change of Facebook is the photos of people, but the Now I will give specific examples of how the design of facebook that focus on photos of people are changing the way people take photos. With each example I will then give a examples of how the interface could have been designed differently to diminish or change this photo taking behavior.

o Bring camera to more places?

    • Need to be in other people’s photos in social situations
      • I would argue that due to certain design choices in Facebook it has become very important to crowd in to photos. Proof would be that people are a lot less eager to get in someone’s personal photos.
        • Part of this is they are guaranteed that they get to see it.
        • But the other major part has to do with the design of Facebook. Explain which design choices mentioned earlier relate to this.
      • Alternative: You have to hunt through your friends photo sets to tag photos of yourself
      • Alternative: List the other alternatives I have

o When visiting a place, now it is often less about being a photographer, and more about having photos to prove you are there

      • The reason people do this is linked in to the most basic ideas of Facebook that it is about representing yourself through photos of yourself.
      • Talk about establishing shot example
      • Talk about how all the design choices mentioned above encourage this and how
      • Changing designs relating to this is changing the basic elements of Facebook.

§ Alternative: Your photo album consisted of photos of things you love or value

· Would this adjust what type of places you bring your camera, or the type of photos you yearn for

      • Alternative: Places you have been or favorite places album
        • This album is near the top and features photos of your favorite places
      • Alternative: Photographers Best Shots
      • Other alternatives
  • Closing
    • Figure out how to frame this and put stuff here
    • A dialectic between what people want and how the site is designed
    • Think about the values we are embedding in our digital designs and realize that they change a lot more than just how people act in cyberspace

1 Comment

  1. mingxian

    wow! It looks great! Very well organized!


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