CFI publications

Books from CFI / Papers from CFI 

Books from CFI

Niels Brügger:
Archiving Websites. General Considerations and Strategies
76 pages, Aarhus 2005
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This book treats the micro-archivation of websites, i.e. archiving by researchers, students or others without special technical knowledge who wish to save a website for further study using a standard computer.

The phenomenon is discussed from the standpoint that Internet research must be able to stabilise and save the object of its analysis. However, the Internet is endowed with certain fundamental media-specific dynamics that make stabilisation difficult. Based on an account and discussion of these dynamics (linked as they are to sender, text and recipient) the following double conclusion is reached.

Firstly, unlike other well-known media, the Internet does not simply exist in a form suited to being archived, but rather is first formed as an object of study in the very process of archivation. This form differs depending on who does the archiving, when, and for what purpose. Secondly, this means that there is an element of subjective creation in the archived material, so that methodical deliberations are necessary — in other words, the answers to why and how the archived material has been created.

These conclusions form the starting point for the last section of the book, which, based on comprehensive tests of archiving software, discusses in depth the elements that can be included in an archiving strategy.

The book is free of charge, and copies of the book may be obtained by contacting cfi@imv.au.dk while supplies last. Please supply your full mailing address (for the purpose of citation please note that the printed and electronic versions are identical).

In connection with the publication of the book a website has been established where it is possible to find the conclusions of the test, the detailed test results, recommendations for using the individual programmes, a detailed description of the test, and links to resources on net archiving. The website address is http://www.cfi.au.dk/publikationer/archiving


Papers from CFI

The series "Papers from The Centre for Internet Research" publishes texts that reflect the activities of the Centre. All texts are either by CFI members or people that have participated in events organised by the Centre.

Copies of the papers may be obtained by contacting cfi@imv.au.dk (while supplies last). Please supply your full mailing address (for the purpose of citation please note that the printed and electronic versions are identical).

Published papers:

11 Jesper Tække Chat as a technically mediated social system abstract text
10 Rune Dalgaard(ed.): Lev Manovich and The Language of New Media abstract text
09 Anja Bechmann Petersen: Mediediffusion abstract text
08 Henrik Bødker: The Changing Materiality of Music abstract text
07 Jakob Linaa Jensen: Den virtuelle politiske offentlighed – et dansk casestudie
(The virtual political sphere – a Danish case study)
abstract text
06 Anne Ellerup Nielsen: Rhetorical Features of the Company Website abstract text
05 Niels Brügger & Henrik Bødker (eds.): The Internet and Society?
Questioning Answers and Answering Questions
abstract text
04 Jesper Tække & Berit Holmqvist: Nyhedsgrupper set som
selvorganiserende interaktionssystemer
(News groups viewed as self-organising interaction systems)
abstract text
03 Wolfgang Kleinwächter: Global Governance in
the Information Age
abstract text
02 Niels Ole Finnemann: The Internet
— A New Communicational
abstract text
01 Mark Poster: Print and Digital Authorship abstract text


11 Jesper Tække:
Chat as a technically mediated social system
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  This paper provides an analysis of chat as a technical media for communication. This is realized using the strategy for analyzing that I have called Media Sociography (Tække 2006). The Media Sociography is a synthesis of Medium Theory and the Systems Theoretical Sociology of Niklas Luhmann. The aim of the paper is to describe social reproduction under the constraints of chat, but also to show that Media Sociography can provide a unified theoretical framework for CMC-studies. The paper is also indented to provide an introduction to the Media Sociography for an English speaking public.

Keywords: Chat, Medium Theory, Systems Theoretical Sociology, Computer Mediated Communication, Media Sociography.
10 Rune Dalgaard(ed.):
Lev Manovich and The Language of New Media
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In his book The Language of New Media (2001), Lev Manovich focuses in particular on interface (the language of the screen), operations (e.g. digital compositing), digital illusions and forms (e.g. the database form replacing the traditional narrative form). Referring to space in computer games, database navigation and the materiality of sound, respectively, the three essays in this volume discuss some of the concepts in Lev Manovich’s book.

Keywords: New media, theory, narrative, database, navigation, switching, computer games, space and game space, philosophy of space, art history, the literate composer, the sound object, representation of music

09 Anja Bechmann Petersen:
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Do digital media change our understanding of media in general and specific media types in particular? If so, how do we conceptualize this change? These questions are the focal points of this paper. Analyzing web media as examples of digital media, the paper illustrates changes in the concepts of TV, radio and newspaper. The three specific media are chosen because the field of interest lies in the old mass media organizations. Drawing lines to the broader media landscape, the paper suggests ‘media diffusion’ as a term to conceptualize the changes instead of media convergence and media divergence. By viewing media as discourses the paper proposes six additional media discourses which are all termed media but follow different discursive formations in the diffusion of media.

Keywords: media diffusion, media convergence, the concept of medium, online media

08 Henrik Bødker:
The Changing Materiality of Music
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A great deal of effort has gone into discussing issues of copyright in relation to the new materialities of the digital distribution of popular music; there has, however, been less focus on the changes that these new developments may invoke with respect to the cultural and social usages of music. Against the backdrop of recent discussions of popular music as material culture it is argued that emergent usages must be seen in relation to accumulations of different materialities and that such a perspective highlights issues related to both aesthetic reflexivity and agency.

Keywords: cultural commodity, materiality, reflexivity, music, MP3.

07 Jakob Linaa Jensen:
Den virtuelle politiske offentlighed – et dansk casestudie
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  Perspectives for the Internet as a new public sphere have been discussed for some time. This paper takes its departure in theoretical accounts on the nature of the ideal political public sphere and examines a Danish political discussion group, dk.politik. It is investigated whether this virtual public sphere fulfils some of the democratic promises affiliated with the Internet. It is concluded that much of the debate is respectful and some individuals claim that they feel more informed and enlightened afterwards. However, certain individuals tend to engage in endless discussions. Further, it is found that the group is not entirely anarchic as informal procedures are used to ensure a decent level of the debate. However, it seems as if the participants are the “chosen few” who use the Internet for enhancing their political participation and interest where as no new groups are mobilised.

Keywords: e-democracy, public sphere, social capital, usenet groups, political participation.

06 Anne Ellerup Nielsen:
Rhetorical Features of the Company Website
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  Recent years have seen a growing body of literature concerned with the World Wide Web as a new form of communication, and numerous discussions on composition, structure and design of successful company websites are being held daily in all kinds of forums within and outside the Internet. However, most of these discussions seem to focus on the technological properties of the Internet or tend to serve purely practical purposes and only few researchers discuss the rhetorical features of web communication, the exception being a limited number of researchers dealing with metaphors on the Web. In this paper I will discuss the functional and the compositional aspects of corporate communication on the World Wide Web by comparing company websites with traditional market communication media. I will focus on linguistic and visual features of the company website and briefly account for some of the media constraints related to the production and reception of company websites.

Keywords: World Wide Web, Corporate Websites, Hypertext, Rhetorical Strategies.
05 Niels Brügger & Henrik Bødker (eds.):
The Internet and Society? Questioning Answers and Answering Questions
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Through the concepts of materiality, community, modernity and the public sphere, the four essays in this volume engage critically with some of the overall frames for understanding the internet-society nexus that James Slevin puts forward in The Internet and Society (2000).

Keywords: internet, media, society, culture, materiality, community, modernity, computer theory, interface, public sphere, democracy.

04 Jesper Tække & Berit Holmqvist:
Nyhedsgrupper set som selvorganiserende interaktionssystemer: En analysestrategi baseret på sociologisk systemteori
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In this paper [in Danish] we present a strategy for analyzing communicative systems. The strategy is inspired by Niklas Luhmanns theory of social systems and Spencer Browns theory on form. We illustrate our framework by applying it to some sam-ples from a newsgroup on the internet. The questions to be answered is what communication in the new interactive medium can tell us about social organiza-tion in general, and if it is possible to describe interaction in newsgroups as a specific genre where the distinction between interactive systems and organiza-tions dissolves.

Keywords: social systems, media, form, autopoiesis, newsgroup, interaction, organisation, self-organisation, Luhmann

03 Wolfgang Kleinwächter:
Global Governance in the Information Age
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Globalization and the borderless Internet are changing not only the world economy but also the global systems of governance. The emergence of new global governance mechanisms like the "Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers" (ICANN) and the "Global Business Dialogue on eCommerce" (GBDe) can be seen as "pilot projects" to explore the feasibility of new policy mechanisms which go beyond the traditional governmental top-down system. Both institutions have introduced new principles in global policy-making like bottom-up coordination, rough consensus, openness and transparency. But they still have to demonstrate their legitimacy and accountability. The publication concludes that with the ongoing globalization and informatisation of law and policy-making, new governance structures will appear which go beyond a system based on the territorial and personal sovereignty of the nation state.

Keywords: Internet Governance, GBDe, ICANN, Nation State, International Law, Domain Name System, New Trilateralism, Global Information Societ
02 Niels Ole Finnemann:
The Internet — A New Communicational Infrastructure
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  By situating the Internet within the general history of media, this paper aims at a characterization of the general properties of the Internet. Firstly, a general model of the five most significant matrices of media in the history of mankind is presented and discussed. Secondly, the paper addresses some of the issues arising from the interrelationships between media in a given matrix as well as the transition from one matrix into another. Thirdly, the paper presents various definitions and approaches to the analysis of the Internet; and finally, the paper concludes with a discussion of properties constituting the Internet as a narrative and discursive space.

Keywords: Internet, media history, hypertext, narrative space, information overload.

Mark Poster:
Print and Digital Authorship

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  The essay explores alterations in authorship and readership brought about by new material conditions of textuality. The argument is that print, broadcast electronics and digital networks each construct authors and readers in different ways. I ask what are the material conditions of authors/readers today? I use Walter Benjamin and Michel Foucault to frame the question of the author/reader in relation to new technologies. I contrast the analogue and the digital, and the printed book with the hypertext. In each case I explore the changed configuration of the subject. I conclude with questions about the nature of the subject in new fields of authoring/reading and connect these with implications for political theorizing.

Keywords: authorship, readership, textuality, new media, internet

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Revised 09.01.2009