Based on years of research 'Sex and Social Media' offers the curious reader an academically informed yet highly accessible discussion of the nuances of sexual social media and socially mediated sex.
This lively and entertaining book explores how social media shapes sex; what even counts as sex on social media; how people attribute meaning to their sexual social media practices; how entangled social media sex is in our identities and how relationships or even communities emerge from socially mediated sex. 'Sex and Social Media' begins by tracing the origins of our common anxieties around social media sex particularly relating to privacy, technology and gendered sexual expression, showing the continuing power of long-held stigmas surrounding acceptable sexual behaviour.
'Sex and Social Media' also explores social media platforms, and the corporations who own them, as the shapers of sex. Katrin Tiidenberg and Emily van der Nagel conclude that the way platforms handle their responsibilities to users can often leave a lot to be desired.
As part of their extensive research, authors Tiidenberg and van der Nagel interviewed over 50 people, some of them multiple times; conducted a seven-year ethnography with a community of sex bloggers on Tumblr (covering areas of body image, kink, sexual subcultures, sexual identities, etc) and a year-long study of Reddit’s Gonewild subreddit. The research participants speak for themselves and their lived experiences with sexting, nudes, cybersex, shame, joy, friendship, pseudonymity, alternative accounts, content moderation, safe spaces and changing platform rules bring the discussion to life.
This fascinating book opens up a much-needed discussion around how social media shapes how we perceive and practice sex today. It’s a must-read for anyone interested in sex, media, education, health and society.
About the Authors:
Katrin Tiidenberg, PhD is an Associate Professor of Social Media and Visual Culture at the Baltic Film, Media, Arts and Communication School of Tallinn University. She is the author of 'Selfies, why we love (and hate) them' (2018), as well as 'Body and Soul on the Internet - making sense of social media' (2017, in Estonian). Tiidenberg is on the Executive Board of the Association of Internet Researcher and the Estonian Young Academy of Sciences. She is currently writing and publishing on sex, social media, visual social media practices and digital research ethics. More info at: kkatot.tumblr.com
Emily van der Nagel, PhD is a Lecturer in Social Media in the School of Media, Film and Journalism at Monash University in Australia. She has been published in M/C Journal: A Journal of Media and Culture, Media International Australia, Continuum: Journal of Media and Cultural Studies, Internet Histories, and First Monday. Emily researches social media identities, platforms, and cultures. She tweets at @emvdn, and is online at http://emvdn.net/.