Citizens breaking out of filter bubbles: Urban screens as civic media

Foth, Marcus, Tomitsch, Martin, Forlano, Laura, Haeusler, Matthias Hank, & Satchell, Christine (2016) Citizens breaking out of filter bubbles: Urban screens as civic media. In Muller, J., Kostakos, V., Memarovic, N., & Ojala, T. (Eds.) Proceedings of the International Symposium on Pervasive Displays (PerDis'16), Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), Oulu, Finland, pp. 140-147.

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Abstract

Social media platforms risk polarising public opinions by employing proprietary algorithms that produce filter bubbles and echo chambers. As a result, the ability of citizens and communities to engage in robust debate in the public sphere is diminished. In response, this paper highlights the capacity of urban interfaces, such as pervasive displays, to counteract this trend by exposing citizens to the socio-cultural diversity of the city. Engagement with different ideas, networks and communities is crucial to both innovation and the functioning of democracy. We discuss examples of urban interfaces designed to play a key role in fostering this engagement. Based on an analysis of works empirically-grounded in field observations and design research, we call for a theoretical framework that positions pervasive displays and other urban interfaces as civic media. We argue that when designed for more than wayfinding, advertisement or television broadcasts, urban screens as civic media can rectify some of the pitfalls of social media by allowing the polarised user to break out of their filter bubble and embrace the cultural diversity and richness of the city.

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ID Code: 95129
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: urban screens, social media, algorithmic filters, public sphere, civic engagement, community engagement, filter bubbles, echo chambers, democracy, smart cities, smart citizen, media architecture
DOI: 10.1145/2914920.2915010
ISBN: 9781450343664
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > INFORMATION AND COMPUTING SCIENCES (080000) > DISTRIBUTED COMPUTING (080500) > Ubiquitous Computing (080504)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > INFORMATION AND COMPUTING SCIENCES (080000) > INFORMATION SYSTEMS (080600) > Computer-Human Interaction (080602)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > INFORMATION AND COMPUTING SCIENCES (080000) > LIBRARY AND INFORMATION STUDIES (080700) > Social and Community Informatics (080709)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND DESIGN (120000) > DESIGN PRACTICE AND MANAGEMENT (120300) > Digital and Interaction Design (120304)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND DESIGN (120000) > URBAN AND REGIONAL PLANNING (120500) > Urban Design (120508)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING (190000) > FILM TELEVISION AND DIGITAL MEDIA (190200) > Interactive Media (190205)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING (190000) > JOURNALISM AND PROFESSIONAL WRITING (190300) > Journalism Studies (190301)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING (190000) > JOURNALISM AND PROFESSIONAL WRITING (190300) > Journalism and Professional Writing not elsewhere classified (190399)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > LANGUAGES COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE (200000) > COMMUNICATION AND MEDIA STUDIES (200100) > Communication Technology and Digital Media Studies (200102)
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Design
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Copyright Owner: Copyright is held by the owner/author(s). Publication rights licensed to ACM.
Copyright Statement: Permission to make digital or hard copies of all or part of this work for personal or classroom use is granted without fee provided that copies are not made or distributed for profit or commercial advantage and that copies bear this notice and the full citation on the first page.
Copyrights for components of this work owned by others than the author(s) must be honored. Abstracting with credit is permitted. To copy otherwise, or republish, to post on servers or to redistribute to lists, requires prior specific permission and/or a fee. Request permissions from Permissions@acm.org.
PerDis '16, June 20 - 22, 2016, Oulu, Finland
Copyright is held by the owner/author(s). Publication rights licensed to ACM.
ACM 978-1-4503-4366-4/16/06…$15.00
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1145/2914920.2915010
Deposited On: 26 Apr 2016 01:40
Last Modified: 03 Nov 2016 01:21

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