I Tweet Honestly, I Tweet Passionately: Twitter Users, Context Collapse, and the Imagined Audience

Alice Marwick and danah boyd

Abstract

Social media technologies collapse multiple audiences into single contexts, making it difficult for people to use the same techniques online that they do to handle multiplicity in face-to-face conversation. This paper investigates how content producers navigate ‘imagined audiences’ on Twitter. We talked to participants with different types of followings to understand their techniques, including targeting multiple audiences, concealing subjects, and maintaining authenticity. For some, the techniques of audience management resemble those of ‘micro-celebrity’ and personal branding, representing strategic self-commodification. Our model of the networked audience assumes a many-to-many communication through which individuals conceptualize an imagined audience evoked through their tweets.

Details

Publication typeArticle
Published inNew Media and Society
PublisherSage
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