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Welcome to the Front Page: An Ethnographic Exploration of Free Speech within Reddit

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Welcome to the Front Page: An Ethnographic Exploration of Free Speech within Reddit

Maclean, Andrew (2018) Welcome to the Front Page: An Ethnographic Exploration of Free Speech within Reddit. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

Reddit, the self-described Font Page of the Internet, presents a front row seat to the commodification of the internet’s earliest aspiration into a marketable good. Yet unlike other platforms in the web 2.0 era, Reddit’s users resist, finding means to counter the prevailing trend. The platform with its long, and often tortured relationship to free speech suggests the means towards locating the root of such resistance. Expressing a desire for autonomy, free speech within Reddit highlights the clash between competing directions for Reddit. Like much of the internet, Reddit’s future can be distilled to a single question, does it exist as a private property, or a public good? Welcome to the front page is an ethnographic exploration of the role that free speech plays within Reddit. Addressing how free speech is understood and deployed by users, moderators, and administrators, the following thesis contends that to understand Reddit’s successes and failures, one must first begin by understanding the importance of free speech, and the direction such an attachment portends.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Sociology and Anthropology
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Maclean, Andrew
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:Sociology
Date:July 2018
Thesis Supervisor(s):French, Martin
ID Code:984144
Deposited By: ANDREW MACLEAN
Deposited On:16 Nov 2018 15:45
Last Modified:16 Nov 2018 15:45
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