Screenshot, save, share, shame: Making sense of new media through screenshots and public shame
This article engages in a qualitative thematic analysis of media discourse about two prominent cases involving screenshots and public shame: the story of Amanda Todd, a Canadian teenager who took her own life after years of cyberbullying facilitated by screenshots; and the story of Anthony Weiner, the New York U.S. Congressman whose political career crumbled after screenshots revealed extramarital flirtations. It shows how screenshots violated the assumed boundaries of media environments, and in doing so prompted moments of public sense-making around new media. By focusing on cases where public shaming collides with the introduction of new media technologies, this article also offers an opportunity to understand how public spectacles of emotion, specifically of shame, shape new media technologies’ meanings and uses.
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