Animal Crossing Fans: Come and play with us!

Are you an Animal Crossings fan? Meg at the Vitalities Lab is now looking for Animal Crossing players to participate in an in-game interview, to learn more about their experience of playing the game while social distancing in 2020. Here are the details: My Happy Place: Exploring the use of ‘Animal Crossing: New Horizons’ duringContinue reading “Animal Crossing Fans: Come and play with us!”

Is social media like food?

Clare Southerton It’s becoming more common to hear about social media ‘fasts’, digital detoxes, as well as media consumption practices understood in terms of digital ‘calories’, nutrition and diets. The language of health, wellness and the diet industry has well and truly spread to how we talk about social media, as well as other technologiesContinue reading “Is social media like food?”

Time in the ‘Time of Corona’

Katrine Meldgaard Kjær, Clare Southerton, Marianne Clark, Ash Watson As the COVID-19 pandemic has spread globally, our experiences of it have shifted over time since initial reports of the virus hit the headlines in January. These temporal shifts can be subtle, almost negligible, or more confronting. Yet even when they are more noticeable, it canContinue reading “Time in the ‘Time of Corona’”

COVID-19 and the myth of the digital ‘shift’

Clare Southerton After the COVID-19 pandemic had changed the way many researchers live and work, I started to see a lot of questions and discussion on social media within the academic community about taking research ‘online’ because it could no longer be conducted face-to-face. This is a bit curious because we’re having these conversations onContinue reading “COVID-19 and the myth of the digital ‘shift’”

Friendship by Design: Kawaii Villagers in Animal Crossing: New Horizons

Megan Rose Why has Animal Crossing: New Horizons been so popular during COVID-19 lockdown, and are the cute characters featured in the game so popular? My research at the Vitalities Lab explores this question with an ethnographic study of online Animal Crossing fandom communities and interviews with players. As a specialist in kawaii (cuteness), I’mContinue reading “Friendship by Design: Kawaii Villagers in Animal Crossing: New Horizons”

What COVID-19 can remind us of (but that we know from other events)

Jens Lindberg I did not plan to write about COVID-19. There have been so many texts at this point on the different trails of destruction the pandemic will leave behind, and how it will change things forever. But then again, looking back in history, writers will probably be right. So, maybe I can at leastContinue reading “What COVID-19 can remind us of (but that we know from other events)”

Vitalities Lab Newsletter Number 8

Tuesday 19 May, 2020 Like many people around the world, all of us in the Vitalities Lab have been adjusting to the ever-changing ‘new normal’. We’re all currently working from home using a range of tools to keep in touch and connected during this time of isolation (you can read about our digital workspace.) SinceContinue reading “Vitalities Lab Newsletter Number 8”

Can lip-syncing save lives?

Viral health information on TikTok Clare Southerton With the rapid rise of short-form video-sharing platform TikTok, health professionals have started mobilising the popularity of the site to provide users insight into their work conditions as well as offer health advice. In the wake of the COVID-19 coronavirus crisis, social media has played a particularly centralContinue reading “Can lip-syncing save lives?”

“Mummy & Daddy…Please look at ME!”: Analysing messages to parents about technology use

Marianne Clark, Vicki Harman and Clare Southerton It has been said that we live in an ‘attention economy’, in which our attention is a commodity and the capacity to hold attention is a key value. Increasingly, technology has been blamed for bringing about this state, for distracting and re-orienting our attention to an ever expandingContinue reading ““Mummy & Daddy…Please look at ME!”: Analysing messages to parents about technology use”