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Faraway, so close!: Proximity and distance in ethnography online
Södertörn University, School of Culture and Education, Media and Communication Studies.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-6903-141X
2014 (English)In: Media Culture and Society, ISSN 0163-4437, E-ISSN 1460-3675, Vol. 36, no 6, 862-877 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This article argues for a revised importance of distance, besides the much emphasized closeness, in the debate on and use of ethnographic methods in online environments. When returning to the founding fathers of ethnographic methods, distance is often put forward as a core aspect of ethnographic methods, something widely forgotten, or even rejected, in the current debate in the field. Space has been restructured by digital media technologies, and the spatial and temporal proximity of digital  media cultures present new challenges for research methodologies. Based on the author’s own experiences of ethnographic fieldwork in digital cultures, and with Henri Lefebvre’s theory of everyday life as a rhythm as vantage point, it is here argued that  distance, dialectically interlinked with closeness and proximity, should be given further attention in current research and debate on ethnographic methods used online.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. Vol. 36, no 6, 862-877 p.
Keyword [en]
digital cultures, distance, ethnography, everyday life, methodology, proximity, qualitative methods, rhythmanalysis
National Category
Media and Communications
Research subject
Critical and Cultural Theory
URN: urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-24343DOI: 10.1177/0163443714531195ISI: 000342800000009ScopusID: 2-s2.0-84910027585Local ID: 1045/42/2011OAI: diva2:737059
Virtual Everyday Life
Swedish Research Council
Available from: 2014-08-11 Created: 2014-08-11 Last updated: 2015-07-17Bibliographically approved

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