Social media have been (for quite some time now) part of the fabric of our lives. But as with many new technologies, it often takes a while for us to be able to step back, assess the tool's impact, and consider what's next. This collection offers one of the first sets of scholarly work in our field that responds to social media's influence on both popular and extra-curricular writing as well as on scholarly communication. Too frequently, social media is dismissed as non-academic, unworthy of sustained attention by researchers. The authors featured here present compelling reasons why this oft-neglected form of writing deserves—and demands—continued academic response.
Social Writing/Social Media: Publics, Presentations, and Pedagogies makes this contribution by examining the impact of social media on three writing-related themes: publics and audiences, presentation of self and groups, and pedagogy at various levels of higher education. The contributors to this collection urge readers to pay attention to an undertheorized aspect of writing online—the acts of composing that occur specifically in social-media spaces. Organized in three sections—social media and public audiences; social media and presentation; and social media and pedagogy—it builds on previous explorations of the role of multimodality in composition studies by extending ongoing conversations that have asked readers to expand notions of literacy in the twenty-first century. By addressing the wide range of composing activities that take place in social media and the rich variety of genres, audiences, stylistic choices, and pedagogical possibilities, this collection offers an important contribution to our understanding of pedagogy and practice in social media spaces.
Douglas M. Walls is Assistant Professor of English at North Carolina State University where he teaches in the Masters of Science in Technical Communication program. His research is in digital rhetoric, especially in the user experiences of traditionally marginalized or underrepresented groups. His work has appeared in both traditional and new media forms in Computers and Composition: An International Journal; Kairos: A Journal of Rhetoric, Technology, and Pedagogy; and The Journal of Business and Technical Communication.
Stephanie Vie is Associate Professor and Department Chair of Writing and Rhetoric at the University of Central Florida in Orlando. Her work has been published in numerous edited collections and journals including Computers and Composition; Computers and Composition Online; Kairos: A Journal of Rhetoric, Technology, and Pedagogy; First Monday; and Technoculture. She's currently at work on a manuscript titled Literate Acts in Social Media that studies faculty and former students' use of social media over the course of a decade. She tweets at @digirhet.
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