Logged in or locked in? Young adults’ negotiations of social media platforms and their features

Gangneux, J. (2019) Logged in or locked in? Young adults’ negotiations of social media platforms and their features. Journal of Youth Studies, 22(8), pp. 1053-1067. (doi: 10.1080/13676261.2018.1562539)

176967.pdf - Accepted Version



Drawing on empirical data from qualitative interviews, this article explores young adults’ everyday experiences of ‘logging in’ and their accounts of their engagement with social media platforms, in particular Facebook. By doing so, it shows how ‘logging in’ can turn into feelings of being ‘locked in’ – both in relation to personal data-mining and expectations of participation. The paper highlights the complex ways in which young adults responded to these feelings and negotiated connection and disconnection on social media platforms by deploying tactics of limitation and suspension. For example, in order to regain control of their time and negotiate their relationships, young adults tactically used Facebook Messenger’s previews to bypass read receipts and temporarily suspend connection. Using de Certeau’s distinction between ‘strategy’ and ‘tactics’, the article argues that although young adults managed social media platforms on an individual level (by deploying ‘tactics’), their understandings and negotiations of the platforms were significantly shaped by the platforms’ designs and features, by the strategies of the corporations owning and operating them as well as embedded within the asymmetrical relations of power of platform capitalism.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Gangneux, Dr Justine
Authors: Gangneux, J.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences
Journal Name:Journal of Youth Studies
Publisher:Taylor and Francis
ISSN (Online):1469-9680
Published Online:03 January 2019
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2019 Informa UK Limited, Trading as Taylor and Francis Group
First Published:First published in Journal of Youth Studies 22(8): 1053+1067
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy

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