START Conference Manager    

ASIST 2012 Annual Meeting 
Baltimore, MD, October 26-30, 2012

 
Transformation or Continuity? The Impact of Social Media on Information: Implications for Theory and Practice
Jutta Haider, Isto Huvila, Andrew Cox, Helena Francke and Hazel Hall

Tuesday, 10:30am


Summary

Abstract This panel debates whether the ways in which social media are changing the nature, creation, location, use and sharing of information constitute a transformation or are primarily marked by continuity. Ubiquitous and everyday access to social media (for some) seems to be bringing about changes in social practice, including of information-related activities, such that conceptualisations of information itself are potentially reshaped. Discussants draw inspiration from the pervasive impact on information activities of the everyday adoption of social media. At a theoretical level they also draw inspiration from the analytic resources of contemporary practice theory and its emphasis on materiality and embodiment, routine and change, social expectations and social identity, and knowledge as a process. All the participants of the panel have conducted new empirical research on social media use with a focus on its deep as well as broad impact. The audience members are invited to discuss with the panelists questions such as how are social media related to institutionalised practices and hierarchies, how does social media use shape perceptions of authority and trustworthiness, and how can a new theorisation help librarians, information professionals and researchers understand change and assume a proactive role in it?