Saturday, October 18, 2008

Notes on Gender on the Internet Presentations

Holly Kruse "Gender & Interactive Media Environments: A Case Study"

Horseracing and Interactive Media

Using the Internet to bet, or going into the physical space.
Kruse is concerned with presence and whether or not it is gendered. Think about para mutial betting - many people are influencing the odds but we don't sense who they are or where they are.

Gender and age are both factors in Off Track Betting (OTB) sites.

Women liked that the betting seemed private, time to figure out how to bet without pressure from others. They missed seeing the horses in person

Men liked the bar, being with friends at OTB. Women didn't like being around the other patrons, and they missed the horses at OTB.

Preferences on using the Internet to bet may be attributed to the use of the home (men = leisure, women = work)

Denise N. Rall "Craft in the Age of the Internet"

StitchnBitch movement where women meet in public places to knit
What is traditional craft? Involves environment, technologies, indigenous practices.

Spinning influenced cultural meanings in Peru because it was responsible for creating the clothing that labeled people as part of a hierarchical organization/status orientation.

Machinery is more important than care to the self. So where is protest part of spinning? Ghandi made hand spinning the visual icon for his nonviolent protest movement. StitchnBitch claims that craft + protest was rooted in the 1960's - Rail believes it goes much further back. Women were first given independent work and incomes in during the Industrial revolution as a result of the mechanization of spinning and weaving. Rail doesn't think people were knitting while protests were happening.

Home craft experienced a break after mechanization. Think Bauhaus the home as a "machine for living"

Digital Domesticana. Martha Stewart exploded, Needlecraft is now worth 1.07 Billion. Knitting now has new imagery: knit "chic." Urban vs. rural economy: the Internet plays a huge role in Urban areas because of its speed and reach. The Internet fails for people in rural communities because the networks are locally built and you learn in the home and strong connection to land argriculture and animals. Urban communities can reconfigure traditional elements. Representations, crafts should be kinky and it tells the home craft person that they need the expertise of professional crafts and you can't DIY. But isn't that just extending your social network? Just because a professional is in your social network doesn't mean you can't learn from them. Spinning is different because active pursuit of the craft is rare and its hard to learn from the book. Finding a specialized practitioner is almost necessary

Marj Kibby "Not Sleeping with the Band: Female Fandom Online"

Hysterical female fans of the Beatles in 1964 - it was one of the few roles available to women at the time in music. Female music fan's experience is mediated as a pre-teen idolization rather than a mature appreciation of music culture. The Internet has changed music culture and music fandom is experienced through access to music and other fans. Music zines and music blogs, from the bedroom to the street - music culture is more public. Women are more likely to participate when they know what they are saying is accurate and won't make them look stupid.

Both males and females feel as though they have a personal relationship with bands on MySpace. Both males and females talk about their personal feelings outside of the band using messaging systems (had a bad day, glad to be among friends, ex.)

What the Internet provides is enhanced opportunities a greater variety of experiences and increased returns for effort. Woman can view themselves as music fanatics instead of groupies.

Sarah Bocciardi Bassett "Performing Themselves: Women's Identity Strategies in World of Warcraft"

Games girls play: Games marketed to girls, games marketed to men that women like (Halo, etc.) Are there ways that women play sexist games and subvert it? Are identities fixed or fluid?

Sample is not casual gamers, these are women with multiple 70 level plus characters.
Portrayed themselves as very feminine, flirting and playing up their gender. They did this because there were rewards: help, free stuff. Using gender to advantage
Make gender a non-issue. Didn't disclose gender to anyone except close friends. Need to monitor chat and looked down on very feminine women, wanted to exceed because they're good players.
One respondent took on a very masculine role. Gave her more authority, people listened to her more. When she played as a women people really tried to help her. In her guild people knew she was a woman, can flirt etc. but assumes authority as well.

Role playing was seen as creating fiction. Others saw this as an opportunity to have an outlet on their true identity without judgement. Many tried to fight sexism actively.

Women want to play games marketed to men, but they need to be marketed to. Identities may be more fixed than we thought. Its very had to maintain outside Internet identities as members network outside of WOW.

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