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Saturday, October 24 • 3:10pm - 4:30pm
Imagined Visibilities

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ROUNDTABLE: Young People’s Imagined Visibilities
Vickery, Jacqueline Ryan (1); Abidin, Crystal (2); Kwok Choon, Mary Jane (3); Hendry, Natalie (4,5); Rickman, Aimee (6)
1: University of North Texas, United States of America; 2: University of Western Australia, Australia; 3: Université du Québec à Montréal, Canada; 4: RMIT University, Australia; 5: The Young and Well Cooperative Research Centre, Australia; 6: California State University, Fresno, United States of America
This roundtable brings together diverse perspectives about imaginaries of youth online. Often young people’s online practices are trivialized, pathologized, or demonized within popular imagination. At the same time, we see young people using the internet as spaces for civic engagement, recovery, and networking. The contradictory ways in which young people are imagined tend to ignore teens’ agency and continue to shape our expectations, practices, and policies. Shifting away from a framework of risk/opportunity, we instead structure the discussion around the idea of “visibility”, that is, how do young people, news media, and policymakers, understand and negotiate the visibility of youth practices online? What strategies do young people enact to protect privacy, resist surveillance, and/or to deliberately construct public online identities? These expectations and tactics affect and regulate the everyday lived experiences of youth, and thus deserve critical consideration. The discussion addresses several aspects of the conference theme including: debunking myths of young people’s practices, how expectations of young people affect policy, and offers comparative examinations of youth imaginaries across cultures and identities.

As part of a diverse and broader conversation, Jacqueline Vickery explores the barriers that prevent some low-income youth media producers from sharing their work in networked publics. Mary Jane Kwok Choon considers how young adults in Quebec manage privacy, focusing on practices of institutional surveillance and social media policies. Aimee Rickman examines how young rural females in the U.S. “migrate” to and through different social media platforms to perform different visibilities to distinct audiences. Natalie Hendry demonstrates how visuality in social media affords young Australians with mental illnesses the opportunity to transform the invisibility of their experiences. And Crystal Abidin focuses on media representations of young microcelebrities in Singapore and addresses the intentional labor practices involved in creating self-branded online identities.


Jacqueline Ryan Vickery

Associate Professor, University of North Texas

avatar for Crystal Abidin

Crystal Abidin

University of Western Australia, Australia
PhD Candidate, Anthropology & Sociology

Mary Jane Kwok Choon

Université du Québec à Montréal, Canada
PhD Candidate, lecturer, Université du Québec à Montréal

Natalie Hendry

RMIT University, Australia;nThe Young and Well Cooperative Research Centre, Australia
avatar for Aimee Rickman

Aimee Rickman

Assistant Professor, California State University, Fresno, United States of America

Saturday October 24, 2015 3:10pm - 4:30pm PDT

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