Social Writing/Social Media: Publics, Presentations, and Pedagogies

Edited by Douglas M. Walls and Stephanie Vie
Copy edited by Don Donahue. Designed by Mike Palmquist.

CoverSocial media have been (for quite some time now) part of the fabric of our lives. But as with many new technologies, it often takes a while for us to be able to step back, assess the tool's impact, and consider what's next. This collection offers one of the first sets of scholarly work in our field that responds to social media's influence on both popular and extra-curricular writing as well as on scholarly communication. Too frequently, social media is dismissed as non-academic, unworthy of sustained attention by researchers. The authors featured here present compelling reasons why this oft-neglected form of writing deserves—and demands—continued academic response.

Social Writing/Social Media: Publics, Presentations, and Pedagogies makes this contribution by examining the impact of social media on three writing-related themes: publics and audiences, presentation of self and groups, and pedagogy at various levels of higher education. The contributors to this collection urge readers to pay attention to an undertheorized aspect of writing online—the acts of composing that occur specifically in social-media spaces. Organized in three sections—social media and public audiences; social media and presentation; and social media and pedagogy—it builds on previous explorations of the role of multimodality in composition studies by extending ongoing conversations that have asked readers to expand notions of literacy in the twenty-first century. By addressing the wide range of composing activities that take place in social media and the rich variety of genres, audiences, stylistic choices, and pedagogical possibilities, this collection offers an important contribution to our understanding of pedagogy and practice in social media spaces.

Table of Contents

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Front Matter


Availability Matters (And so Does this Book): A Foreword, William Hart-Davidson

Social Writing and Social Media: An Introduction, Douglas M. Walls and Stephanie Vie

Part 1: Publics and Audiences

Chapter 1. Hashtag Activism: The Promise and Risk of "Attention", Caroline Dadas

Chapter 2. Sustaining Critical Literacies in the Digital Information Age: The Rhetoric of Sharing, Prosumerism, and Digital Algorithmic Surveillance, Estee Beck

Chapter 3. Social Spill: A Case-Based Analysis of Social Media Research, Tabetha Adkins

Chapter 4. After a Decade of Social Media: Abstainers and Ex-Users, Cory Bullinger and Stephanie Vie

Chapter 5. Networking Hardship: Social Composing as Inventive Rhetorical Action, Crystal Broch Colombini and Lindsey Hall

Chapter 6. Still Flying: Writing as Participatory Activism Circulating Across the Firefly 'Verse, Liza Potts

Part 2: Presentation of Self, Groups, and Data

Chapter 7. Having a Feel for What Works: Polymedia, Emotion, and Literacy Practices with Mobile Technologies, Bronwyn T. Williams

Chapter 8. Visualizing Boutique Data in Egocentric Networks, Douglas M. Walls

Chapter 9. Grad School 2.0: Performing Professionalism on Social Media, Amber Buck

Chapter 10. Writing to Have No Face: The Orientation of Anonymity in Twitter, Les Hutchinson

Chapter 11. Indigenous Interfaces, Kristin L. Arola

Chapter 12. The Intimate Screen: Revisualizing Understandings of Down Syndrome through Digital Activism on Instagram, Kara Poe-Alexander and Leslie A. Hahner

Part 3: Pedagogy

Chapter 13. The Rhetoric of Distraction: Media Use and the Student Writing Process, Patricia Portanova

Chapter 14. Social Media in the FYC Class: The New Digital Divide, Lilian W. Mina

Chapter 15. Contextualizing Students' Media Ideologies and Practices: An Empirical Study of Social Media Use in a Writing Class, Michael J. Faris

Chapter 16. Intellectual, Argumentative, and Informational Affordances of Public Forums: Potential Contributions to Academic Learning, Chris M. Anson


About the Editors

Douglas M. Walls is Assistant Professor of English at North Carolina State University where he teaches in the Masters of Science in Technical Communication program. His research is in digital rhetoric, especially in the user experiences of traditionally marginalized or underrepresented groups. His work has appeared in both traditional and new media forms in Computers and Composition: An International Journal; Kairos: A Journal of Rhetoric, Technology, and Pedagogy; and The Journal of Business and Technical Communication.

Stephanie Vie is Associate Professor and Department Chair of Writing and Rhetoric at the University of Central Florida in Orlando. Her work has been published in numerous edited collections and journals including Computers and Composition; Computers and Composition Online; Kairos: A Journal of Rhetoric, Technology, and Pedagogy; First Monday; and Technoculture. She's currently at work on a manuscript titled Literate Acts in Social Media that studies faculty and former students' use of social media over the course of a decade. She tweets at @digirhet.

Publication Information: Walls, Douglas M., & Vie, Stephanie. (2017). Social Writing/Social Media: Publics, Presentations, and Pedagogies. Perspectives on Writing. Fort Collins, Colorado: The WAC Clearinghouse and University Press of Colorado. Available at

Web Publication Date: September 30, 2017.
Print Publication Date: December 12, 2018.

Contact Information:
Douglas M. Walls:
Stephanie Vie:

Perspectives on Writing

Series Editors: Susan H. McLeod, University of California, Santa Barbara; Rich Rice, Texas Tech University

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Copyright © 2017 Douglas M. Walls and Stephanie Vie. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 United States License. 348 pages, with notes, illustrations, and bibliographies. This book is available in print from University Press of Colorado as well as from any online or brick-and-mortar bookstore. Available in PDF and ePub format for no charge on this page at the WAC Clearinghouse. You may view this book. You may print personal copies of this book. You may link to this page. You may not reproduce this book on another website.