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Title: Locative media : from transcendental technologies to socio-formative spheres : an examination of the interface between place, agent and locative media
Author: Fazel, Maryam
ISNI:       0000 0004 5362 1134
Awarding Body: University of Sheffield
Current Institution: University of Sheffield
Date of Award: 2015
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This thesis is a theoretical-empirical study that investigates the consequences and implications of adopting locative media technologies in everyday situations, paying particular attention to the potential strengthening of relationships between locative media and spatial practices of architecture and urban studies. Locative Media is a type of media technology that relates information to location/place, provides sites and occasions for the development of new forms of environmental knowing, spatial and cultural understandings, and arguably constructs new spatial relations with place, place-experience and sense of place. Although there is a vast literature on the socio-spatial and cultural implications of media technologies, social media, social networking sites and other applications accessed through the Internet, there are limited numbers of studies that explore the shift in the ways we understand and relate to virtual materials/information following the emergence of location- based technology, and how those technologies might affect the conventional ways we develop relationships/associations with location/places, or perceive places, or understand spatiality. Tracing the emergence of locative media and the new implications of map/representation, the thesis takes locative media as the subject under scrutiny and investigates the assemblage and interrelationships of the three main ingredients of place/locative media/ agent. The interrelationship of those three ingredients and the social and behavioural norms of using Locative media in real time is explored through an empirical lens using two case studies (individuals using Foursquare/Streetmuseum applications), where three main categories of locative media applications (urban annotation/tagging applications, user-generated maps and social networking applications) are explored. The findings of empirical studies, and issues regarding implications of locative media, are then categorized into thematic chapters: locative media and Image of place, Place-making potentials of new media technologies, locative media and alternative flexible forms of sociability, and finally possibilities of relational place- understanding: In-group experiences. Since the field of locative media is very new, theories and ways of discussing related phenomenon are not yet strongly developed: thus whilst examining existing cases empirically, this thesis also contributes to on-going theoretical discourses regarding place-understanding after new media technologies (tracking the change in place-understanding), and the interconnected issues of spatiality resulting from mediation, embodiment, mobility, technology, and community. Therefore the findings of the empirical studies feed into the process of developing related theories, and construct an argument that locative media could be considered as both Transcendental Technologies (technologies that transcend spatiality, geography and territory) and Socio-Formative Spheres (technologies that form socio-spatial interactions) based on the frames of observation. It also provides an insight into the possible ways that new media technologies can be applied as tools or mediums for architects and urban planners to rewrite the city, to communicate with communities of users, or to adopt those media platforms as site analysis mediums, tools for collecting and sharing site-related information in new, practical ways.
Supervisor: Walker, Stephen ; Meagher, Mark Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available