Social Studies of Domestic Information and Communication Technologies [chapter]

Robert Kraut, Malcolm Brynin, Sara Kiesler
2006 Computers, Phones, and the InternetDomesticating Information Technology  
Why study the new information and communication technologies? In the 20 th century, new information technology has the potential to influence the lives of ordinary citizens as much as it has influenced business, education, and government. In many of the countries in Europe, North America and Asia, the majority of individuals and households are using personal computers, the Internet, and mobile telephones. In the United States, these are often referred to as information technology. In Europe,
more » ... phrase "information and communication technologies" is more commonly used and abbreviated to ICTs. This book is about the potential impact of these new technologies, as they enter our homes and our daily lives, to change the range of activities we pursue, the way we perform old activities, our relationships with other people, and our personal and economic welfare. But will the new ICTs have a significant social effect, and if they do, will the change be positive? This book contributes to the investigations needed to answer these questions. Towards the end of his book, The Coming of Post-Industrial Society, Daniel Bell (1973) argues that before the industrial revolution, humankind confronted nature; through the industrial revolution, we confront a sort of "fabricated nature"; but
doi:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195312805.003.0001 fatcat:ivkgjxoolrby5dlh2jnujsvthq