Background and interests
Between 2004 and 2010 I was a doctoral student at Goldsmiths, University of London. In June 2010 I had completed my thesis and passed my Viva. I was enrolled at the department of media and communications at Goldsmiths, but in 2008 I moved back to Sweden. In London, I worked as a seminar tutor and lecturer for altogether three years, and I now also do so in Sweden, on a part-time basis, at Mälardalen University and Södertörn University College.
What my thesis analyzed was how Swedish file-sharers motivate their action and habits; how their arguments are constituted. I analyzed their ways of justifying their habits, what they refer to, how material and agential conditions are invoked. I interviewed Swedish file sharers, and scrutinized various blogs, newspaper articles, editorials, comments on the Web etc. My main focus was to connect the arguments to various sociological theories of representation, agency, justification and morality, and particularly to the tangible technical, economic, historical, demographic and geographical conditions.
My main interest is in critical knowledge of how ordinary users relate to Internet technologies on a daily basis. My general area of interest is new media technologies, more specifically the social and cultural aspects of digitization and computer networking. What I seek is a critical analysis of contemporary media use from a historical perspective, in order to question and contextualize taken-for-granted notions of comfort, consumption/production, agency, ontology, activity/passivity, and trust.
I have also worked with a variety of side projects, including producing a range of publications including Deptford.TV and Inclusion Through Media. I have also worked with IT support in the college library – something which helped in enhancing my understanding of ordinary uses of IT on a daily basis. My tutoring, counseling and lecturing also enhanced my pedagogical skills. Further, I run a blog on the topic of more media-specific scientific questions.
In 2010 I co-edited a reader entitled Efter The Pirate Bay, together with Pelle Snickars (Head of Research at the Royal Library). The book was published by the Swedish Royal Library in September 2010. In it, several contributors are problematising and highlighting the significance of unrestricted file-sharing and sites like The Pirate Bay. See here for more information in English.
I have also recently published a book with Swedish journalist Eric Schüldt. Our novel-slash-essay Framtiden (Ivrig förlag, in collaboration with Swedish think tank Fores) is a magical, manic, poetic, serious yet banal contemplation on what digitization might entail.
My general profile as a researcher is that I come from a background in media studies (Stockholm University’s JMK/MKV and, of course, Goldsmiths). The traditional, anthropocentric, ethnographic cultural studies perspective in this field (focusing on the uses and experiences of various technologies of ordinary media users/ consumers) is currently becoming exposed to a lot of stimulating interdisciplinary influence. With the emergence of new forms of distribution, networking technologies and the digitalization of media content, we must develop a perspective that…
► heeds the macro-economic fundamentals (i.e. a renaissance of “critical political economy”, taking on quantitative ‘hard’ demographic data, economic factors etc.)
► is technologically “myopic” (i.e. heeds the ontological conditions entailed by digitization, taking the technical network protocols and structures seriously)
► influenced by posthumanism (i.e. shuns an overblown focus on text and language, avoids an overly anthropocentric social constructivism. We are affected by things as much as by people!)
► is subculture-specific, proficient in regard to popular culture (i.e. striving to have the “hand on the pulse” on subcultural and popular cultural movements, fan culture, participatory culture etc. as the ways such phenomena are organized has principal similarities to the way new media structures are becoming organized)
► is historically grounded (i.e. places new media in a historical perspective, and is prepared to respond to phenomena such as determinism, utopianism, teleology and futurology. All media have once upon a time been new!)
This post is also available in: Swedish