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R U Out There?: On Personal Communities in Cyberspace
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Informatics.
1997 (English)In: Proceedings of IRIS 20: Social Informatics / [ed] Braa, Kristine & Monteiro, Eric, Oslo: Department of Informatics, University of Oslo , 1997, 591-604 p.Conference paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The development of information technology and telecommunication is creating newsocial structures in cyberspace, so called virtual communities. These communities areoften regarded as constituted of a group of people joined together by a shared interestusing information technology as a mean. It might be that the members of a communitydo all their communication through electronic media and never meet in real life or thatthe community members do not belong to any specific location. Virtual communitieshave also so far been regarded as something that has little or no correspondence to reallife situations but as more people enters cyberspace the boundaries between virtual lifeand real life are becoming indistinct and blurred. It seems that people, in addition tocreating new relationships based on shared interests, regard cyberspace as a place inwhich to enhance already existing relationships with friends, kin and work mates. Usingthe concept of personal community the purpose of this paper is to give one illustration ofhow individuals can develop, maintain and enhance already existing social relationshipsthrough cyberspace. This individual usage implies a continuing trend of privatizing thirdplaces when more human activities are moved into cyberspace. It also implies that thedevelopment of personal communities in cyberspace will have impacts on the notion ofcommunity, virtual as well as real. Since personal communities are likely to grow there isa need for more detailed studies of personal communities, but also studies of howindividuals are using different forms of information technology to become linked todifferent societal activities.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Oslo: Department of Informatics, University of Oslo , 1997. 591-604 p.
National Category
Information Science
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-32529OAI: diva2:303969
Information Systems Research Seminar in Scandinavia
Available from: 2010-03-16 Created: 2010-03-16 Last updated: 2010-03-17Bibliographically approved

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