Identity and Online Advocacy

Hijab wearing Muslim women’s advocacy by performing the self online

Download PDF to read offlineDownload Abstract The purpose of this paper is to present an understanding of how Hijab wearing women perform their identities online and the resulting social advocacy facilitated via virtual communities. It will focus on the use of the Hijab (garment used to cover hair) as a symbol used to advocate for Muslim women who utilise it in the content they broadcast online. Networked individualism along with influencer culture allows these symbols to be propagated to Read more […]

Identity and Online Advocacy

What’s in a name: Real name policy’s impact on online privacy and safety

Abstract: The aim of this paper is to examine how real-name policies influence and affect online self-presentation. I will argue that digital platforms restrict identity play by administering authentic name policies that jeopardise the safety and privacy of online users. This paper examines Facebook’s history of identity construction and privacy breaches as well as analysing how Google Plus’ ban on pseudonyms ultimately led to its demise. Authentic online identity enforcement produces power Read more […]

Communities and Social Media

Government’s misunderstanding of social media is a missed opportunity

This paper argues that while Australian state governments do have a digital presence, they are slow to utilise platforms like Facebook and Twitter as opportunities to build their social capital, and evolve their relationships with citizens. Historically the relationship between citizens and their government has changed as advancements in technology reshape communities, and the way citizens live and interact. Arguably digital technology is driving a new wave of change but the citizen/government dynamic is remaining static.

Communities and Social Media

As a hyperlocal form of social media, Nextdoor helps neighbours connect – but not always for the better

Abstract While much social research has been dedicated to how the Internet generally, and social networking sites specifically, enable people to connect across great distances, little attention has been paid to the impacts of these technologies on more local communities other than to suggest a negative correlation between online communications and neighbourly behaviour. This paper explores how the locally-focused social media platform Nextdoor supports theories that contend social networking Read more […]

Online Networks and Social Change

Disinformation is Limiting Participation in Online Climate Change Activism

Humans are causing climate change, and global action needs to be taken to limit any negative effects on humankind and the Earth. This paper will show that, although climate activism on Facebook and Twitter by individuals has increased in popularity and effectiveness in the last two years, the ongoing dissemination of disinformation to these same social networking sites (“SNSs”) causes confusion, which results in public interest in action to curb climate change remaining limited. SNSs produce a networked public, with influencers such as Greta Thunberg and organizations such as Fridays for Future and the Climate Council able to use platform affordances to effectively advocate for climate action, encouraging likeminded individuals to form networks on Facebook and Twitter which assist with online and offline actions to pressure policymakers to act on climate change. Simultaneously, the widespread release of disinformation on Facebook and Twitter means these same affordances lead users to innocently share disinformation and distribute misinformation which is reinforced and amplified in users’ filter bubbles and echo chambers, resulting in ongoing public confusion about the reality of climate change. Such misinformation limits the number of participants acting to achieve social change, restricting real social change and effective collective action.

Online Networks and Social Change Empowering Everyday Citizens to Enact Social Change

Change.org_Empowering-Everyday-Citizens_Conference_Upload-1Download Abstract  Trends in Australian political opinion show that citizens are not satisfied with traditional democratic processes and systems and are looking to alternative online spaces to engage in civic action. Additionally, citizens are more likely to engage in politics online and feel empowered by the ease, affordability and reach that decentralised digital platforms like and social networking sites Read more […]