Cooperation and Control in Slashdot

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  • Master's Dissertation – Cooperation and control: a case study of website Bia Martins. Rio de Janeiro, 2006.

(Master in Communication and Culture) - the School of Communication, Rio de Janeiro Federal University, 2006. (text is in Portuguese)


Bia Martins:

"By means of the study of the interface of communication of website, and its technologies of self-organization and self-evaluation, we intend to investigate the relations between cooperation and control existing in the interactions among peers in the internet. The site in question deals mainly with the subject of Free/Libre Open - Source Software and its public is formed by the hacker community. The hacker movement is analyzed in the articulation with the model of immaterial work, and the system of mediation existing in the site, which is operated in a collective way, is seen as a communicational model based upon productive cooperation. Participative research has shown the operation of a system of mutual monitoring between peers as a complement of such a model of cooperative mediation. In order to think about the meaning of the proximity between cooperation and control, we have tried to articulate research on the technologies of cooperation with the studies on visibility and monitoring. We have thus tried to explore the specificities of mutual monitoring between peers as observed in Slashdot, having as a reference the studies on the construction of electronic profiles as a control strategy characteristic of the present time. The conclusions of the case study point to a tendency to homogeneity of the final interface of discussion forums, which contradicts the idea of diversity as a characteristic of the communication many-many that takes place in the internet."

Keywords: Internet, hacker culture, productive cooperation, control, technologies of cooperation.