Conducting research on situated practices of work

Learning objectives:

  1. Conducting research on situated practices of work
  2. Connecting situated practices to interfaces, algorithms, and social forces
  3. Communicating about science and technology

In Part I, we’ll be working to understand what it is like to work through, on, and for internet platforms. Why work? Play is important but people often have to work to survive, so it is an important place to begin our analysis of the social impacts of the internet industries.

Fieldwork Research
Choose one of two methods: participant-observation or informational interviews. Our goal is to understand how platforms affect work and livelihoods.

Platforms affect a wide range of people, including:

People who work through a platform, such as Amazon Mechanical Turk, Lyft, Uber, Postmates
People whose work heavily depends on a platform, for example, artists on Twitter, headhunters on LinkedIn, social media marketers on Facebook, fashion bloggers on Instagram, resellers on eBay or Craigslist
People whose work has been radically changed because of the competition or transformation introduced by a platform, such as taxi drivers, delivery drivers, transcriptionists, pet sitters and walkers.
PARTICIPANT OBSERVATION EARNING CHALLENGE
Are you already one of the kinds of people whose work is affected by platforms? (See bulleted list above.) Or do you want to experience it first hand, like journalist Taylor Soper? Sign up for a platform of your choice. (Warning: It can take several days for platforms to approve you as a worker so start early.)

The living wage for a single adult in San Diego County is $15.01 (source: MIT)

The minimum wage in City of San Diego is $11.50 (source: sandiego.gov)

Your challenge, should you choose to accept it, is to earn $15.01 an hour for 6 hours of work, after you subtract any expenses — that’s $90.06 net earnings.

As you go, take notes on your experience. You can take selfie videos as an easy way of logging your thoughts, reactions, feelings, frustrations, and insights as you go along.

INTERVIEWS ABOUT SITUATED PRACTICES
Identify someone whose work has been affected by platforms (see the bulleted list above).

To get a deep perspective, find someone who has been doing the work for at least six months. The person can be paid or partially unpaid, but they should spend enough time doing the work in question that they can offer you deep insights into the process and the experience.

Before the interview, locate at least three informed sources on this form of work (e.g. long-form journalism, scholarly articles, firsthand accounts). You should spend at least an hour interviewing the person. Record the interview and transcribe the most interesting parts. Include a photo of your interviewee and their workspace, if they give you permission.

Sample interview questions you can draw from | Thomas Conner’s Amazing Interview How-To

Analysis + Deliverables
Write a 1000 word reflection on your learnings:
Explain the most interesting or surprising aspects of the work
Explain any pleasures and frustrations of the job
Reflect on how laws, competition by other workers, company policies, and tech or interface design affect the work
Put your observations in conversation with at least two readings from the course
Woodcock and Waters is one good model of how to reflect and write on work

Place your order
(550 words)

Approximate price: $22

Calculate the price of your order

550 words
We'll send you the first draft for approval by September 11, 2018 at 10:52 AM
Total price:
$26
The price is based on these factors:
Academic level
Number of pages
Urgency
Basic features
  • Free title page and bibliography
  • Unlimited revisions
  • Plagiarism-free guarantee
  • Money-back guarantee
  • 24/7 support
On-demand options
  • Writer’s samples
  • Part-by-part delivery
  • Overnight delivery
  • Copies of used sources
  • Expert Proofreading
Paper format
  • 275 words per page
  • 12 pt Arial/Times New Roman
  • Double line spacing
  • Any citation style (APA, MLA, Chicago/Turabian, Harvard)

Benefits of our college essay writing service

  • 80+ disciplines

    Buy an essay in any subject you find difficult—we’ll have a specialist in it ready

  • 4-hour deadlines

    Ask for help with your most urgent short tasks—we can complete them in 4 hours!

  • Free revision

    Get your paper revised for free if it doesn’t meet your instructions.

  • 24/7 support

    Contact us anytime if you need help with your essay

  • Custom formatting

    APA, MLA, Chicago—we can use any formatting style you need.

  • Plagiarism check

    Get a paper that’s fully original and checked for plagiarism

What the numbers say?

  • 527
    writers active
  • 9.5 out of 10
    current average quality score
  • 98.40%
    of orders delivered on time
error: