User, Community and Communication

Tuesday, 12 July 2016: 10:45
Location: Hörsaal 15 (Juridicum)
Oral Presentation
Wei-Hsin HSIAO, Universität Witten/Herdecke, Germany
The concept of the user and the community has renewed its definition after the internet usage has seen tremendous growth. Comparing with the machine, the computers and their connections (internet or network) are entirely demanding on the continuous inputs of users. The concept of medium and communication offers us to observe how people are recognized as users and the relation of the users and the internet. The medium distinguishes user who is included and excluded. By contrast, the medium provides concrete forms, which enable users be recognized.

In this abstract, we presented an empirical study of the second-order approach, which clarifies neither users or internet are dominated. Flickr is a website and so-called a social networking platform. The users are gathered, observed and organized by Flickr. People were not familiar with each other, nor share photos until becoming the users on Flickr. The communication has started while they registered as an user or not by understanding and accepting the instructions of Flickr. Since Flickr assumes that the communication to people will be realized, people are divided into users and potential users who will possibly be included later. Up to now Flickr provides several forms which enable these users organized as communities. Under different forms of tags, keywords, topics, locations and photos we can find users tightly gathered as communities, and can easily be separated and reformed into new community. In summary, the conventional sociological analysis of users or virtual communities does not take the influence of the computer and internet into account. Nevertheless through communication, the users and communities are with dynamic in Flickr and the forms provided Flickr enable users transforming from individual state into communities.