Platforms and the Shape of Reader Participation

“What interests me at the moment is…how the technical platforms we use to share these experiences are mediated by both the commercial and cultural contexts of reading in the 2ist century and by the choices designers of technical platforms make. “

barbara fister's place

[Cross-posted from the Digital Reading Network blog, where I was invited to share some ideas – they have lots of interesting stuff over there, and tend to be far more scholarly and rigorous than me. I’m realizing I’m more of a dabbler and paddler than a deep diver.]

Last week, I discovered yet another way to share reading experiences online: Call Me Ishmael. It’s a somewhat self-consciously retro website launched in the US in early June that invites readers to call Ishmael and leave a voice message about “a book you love and a story you’ve lived.” Selected stories are published on the site’s main page, along with links to find the book in a library or buy it from a bookstore and a synopsis. The site says nothing about who created it, and its domain has a proxy registration so is equally mysterious. It is, at least, transparent about sales supporting…

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