Transformation or continuity? The impact of social media on information: implications for theory and practice
This panel debates whether the ways in which social media are changing the nature, creation, seeking, use and sharing of infor- mation constitute a transformation or are primarily marked by con- tinuity. Ubiquitous and everyday access to social media (for some) seems to be bringing about changes in social practice, including of information-related activities, such that conceptualisations of infor- mation itself are potentially reshaped. Discussants draw inspiration from the pervasive impact on information activities of the every- day adoption of social media. At a theoretical level they also draw inspiration from the analytic resources of contemporary practice theory and its emphasis on materiality and embodiment, routine and change, social expectations and social identity, and knowledge as a process. All the participants of the panel have conducted new empirical research on social media use with a focus on its deep as well as broad impact. The audience members are invited to dis- cuss with the panelists questions such as how social media relate to routinised daily practices and institutionalised practices and hi- erarchies, how their use refashions social relationships, how they turn information seekers and users into information managers, pro- ducers and creators and shape perceptions of information authority and trustworthiness, and how a new theorisation can help librari- ans, information professionals and researchers understand change and assume a proactive role in it.
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Proceedings of the 2012 ASIS&T Annual Meeting, Baltimore, MD