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Virtual Ethnography by Christine Hine


Virtual Ethnography by Christine Hine

Cutting though the exaggerated and fanciful beliefs about the new possibilities of `net life', Hine produces a distinctive understanding of the significance of the Internet and addresses such questions as: what challenges do the new technologies of communication pose for research methods? Does the Internet force us to rethink traditional categories of `culture' and `society'? In this compelling and thoughtful book, Hine shows that the Internet is both a site for cultural formations and a cultural artefact which is shaped by people's understandings and expectations. The Internet requires a new form of ethnography. The author considers the shape of this new ethnography and guides readers through its application in multiple settings.


`This book reflects scholarly dedication to enlarging the discussion on the nature and role of the internet, and provides insight into how ethnographic methodologies can be adapted creatively to research into modern electronic forms of communication. A glossary of internet terms adds to the usefulness of this well-referenced treaties' - International Journal of Market Research

`There is so much to praise in this excellent book: its sensitivity to the culture, its alertness to the most demanding scholarly standards, its innovative analysis of the World Wide Web and its elegant, lively presentation. Students and researchers of the emerging culture should not be without it!' - Sean Cubitt, Liverpool John Moores University

About the Author

Christine Hine is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Sociology at the University of Surrey. She joined the Department in 2003, having previously worked at Brunel University within the Department of Human Sciences and the Centre for Research into Innovation, Culture and Technology. Hine was President of the European Association for the Study of Science and Technology from 2004 to 2008. She has published widely in virtual research methods, with a particular focus on online ethnography; her first major work, Virtual Ethnography, enjoyed a considerable success as one of the pioneering works to explore the integration of the Internet with existing methodological principles in qualitative research. Her main research centres on the sociology of science and technology, including ethnographic studies of scientific culture, information technology and the Internet, and she has also taken a lead role in promoting discussion of methodologies for sociological understanding of the Internet.

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Book Info

Publication date

4th April 2000


Christine Hine

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SAGE Publications Inc


192 pages


Physical anthropology
Internet guides & online services
Ethical & social aspects of IT
Cultural studies



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