Filtered in/filtered out: Locative media and social accessibility in urban spaces
Keywords:locative media, social accessibility, mobile communication, algorithms, filtering, cities, urban, information and communication technologies
Social accessibility involves the capacity of a person to be reached by other people, typically through established social networks. Locative media provide new complications to the issue of social accessibility in urban spaces. They do not connect people with their existing social networks, but rather with people – often strangers – immediately around them. Locative media apps provide users with the ability to manage these anonymous connections through filtering functionalities. This filtering out and filtering in functionality has profound implications for the social relations of strangers in urban spaces. At the heart of the matter is the question of who is made visible and who is made invisible. Many studies of locative media use demonstrate troubling directions in the ways in which they are developed and used. Often, locative media apps reinforce and reify existing racisms and other forms of prejudice, and a general tendency to try to simplify or eliminate differences.
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Copyright (c) 2021 Darryl A. Pieber
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