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From blog to bebo and beyond: text, risk, participation


Address for correspondence: Professor Victoria Carrington, Division of Education, Arts and Social Sciences, Hawke Research Institute, Magill Campus, University of South Australia, St Bernards Rd, Magill, South Australia 5072, Australia.


This paper broadly explores the notion that text is an artefact that encodes and displays the tensions, resistances, positioning and affinities of its producer and, further, that many of these drivers have their source in quite significant shifts in the broad contours of contemporary Western culture. Against this background, two different artefacts are analysed in this paper: a blog and a bebo page. The blog has been produced by an adult female academic and the bebo page by an early adolescent girl. These text producers and users are positioned quite differently in terms of geography, education, life experience, identity, social class and interests. They also have differential access to and experience of digital technologies. However, they both make use of the affordances of technologies, in particular Internet-connected laptops and desktops, to create and disseminate these texts to do ‘work’ on their behalf in particular social domains.