Ben Peters

Ben Peters is the author of How Not to Network a Nation: The Uneasy History of the Soviet Internet (MIT Press 2016) and editor of Digital Keywords: A Vocabulary of Information Society and Culture (Princeton 2016). He teaches at the University of Tulsa. @bjpeters

bjpeters@gmail.com

Keyword: Algorithm

The algorithm, Tarleton Gillespie argues in this terrific essay, stands as a complex administrator of modern life. In it Gillespie demystifies the many uses of the recent keyword algorithm, on loan from Arabic. It is at once a trick of the trade for software programmers, a synecdoche standing in for entire informational systems and their […]

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Keyword: Participation

Christopher Kelty’s broad-minded and brilliant essay on participation is a welcomed participant in the Digital Keywords volume. It both intellectual broadens as well as analytically tightens the contemporary understanding of that classic concept and near constant discussion of it online. Marshaling together insights ranging from Parmenides to Polanyi, he offers insights such as how participation […]

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Keyword: Hacker

In this definitive essay, Gabriella Coleman critiques the stereotype of a hacker as a white male libertarian. In its place, and through a rich history of its varied sources and expressions, she uncovers an underlying hacker commitment to what she calls “craft autonomy,” or the freedom to do technical work that motivates contemporary classes of […]

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Keywords: Digital & Analog

The popular opposition between “analog” and “digital,” to put it in a nutshell, is wrong. Two essays in the Digital Keywords volume—Jonathan Sterne’s “Analog” and my own “Digital”—frame this fundamental point: the analog and the digital are not a pair (itself a rehearsal of that tired digital binary, 0 and 1). Nor are they necessarily […]

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Announcing Digital Keywords (with a 25% Discount) and a Call for More Keywords at #dkw

I’m thrilled to announce the official publication, by Princeton University Press, of Digital Keywords: A Vocabulary of Information Society and Culture — on the fortieth anniversary of the publication of Raymond Williams’ classic Keywords: A Vocabulary of Culture and Society. Princeton University Press is offering a discount of 25% on the book to all Culture Digitally […]

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