Online Outdoor: Technological, Discursive and Textual Transformations of the Activity of Skating

Anna-Malin Karlsson


Compared to the many studies on work and educational settings, as well as on the forming of purely digital communities and identities, there are still few studies of the integration of communication technology in everyday leisure activities. In this paper, a case study of a long distance skating organization illustrates how technology can permeate even the most physical outdoor practices. Among the questions asked are: How do traditional communication patterns in this community change when new technology is used? What new genres emerge and how are they shaped: which modes are used and what voices are heard? How does the discourse in and on the activity change – and how does the activity change? In focus are the different media and modes, which are mixed when www, e-mail, text messaging, GPS, photography and film are adapted to the needs of the core activity. It is shown that the practices of skating become increasingly discursive and textually mediated and that discourse becomes more multimodal and intertextual.

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