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Technological mediation: the social psychology of information communication technologies

21-23 September 1998

British Psychological Society Annual Social Psychology Conference

University of Kent at Canterbury
A symposium, representing work by social psychologists in the Virtual Society? programme, was presented at the British Psychological Society Annual Social Psychology Conference, recently held at University of Kent at Canterbury.

The symposium entitled "Technological mediation: The social psychology of information communication technologies" was convened by Peter Lunt and Sonia Livingstone. The Virtual Society? Programme was introduced and described by Peter Lunt at the beginning of the symposium.

The following papers were presented:

  • S.Livingstone Symposium introduction: What's new about new technology?
  • S.Brown & G.Lightfoot Mnemotechnics: Groupware and the mediation of memory.
  • P.Lunt & L.Moor Mediated Consumption: Reactions to e-commerce.
  • S.Livingstone Shifting boundaries between public and private: Children's changing media environment.
  • P.Stenner The art of technology: Extending good and evil.
  • P.Lunt Discussant.

The papers by Brown and Lightfoot and by Lunt and Moor reported initial theoretical and empirical research from two of the grants on the programme and Sonia Livingstone, a member of the Advisory Committee of the Virtual Society? Programme, presented results from her EC funded project on children and new media. Paul Stenner offered a theoretical piece on the philosophy of technology.

The focus of the symposium was on documenting the adoption of new technologies in the home and at work, on considering the theoretical resources involved in making sense of the relationship between a developing technology and existing social practices and, given the context of a social psychology conference, a reflection on the role of social psychology in the study of technology and society. The papers were well received and there was some interest from social psychologists in whether there would be a second round of the virtual Society? Programme.

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Contents current at 15th October 1998