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Virtual Worlds, Real Lives; Crossovers into Digital Borderlands. Edition No. 1
VDM Publishing House, October 2009, Pages: 324
In this monograph Shakeel examines the impacts of consumption of media products and simulations on creation of lived-experiences. Using ethnographic methods, he explores how consumers use simulated products in lieu of the real and tangible, and how consumption of these simulations impacts upon their lifeworlds. Drawing heavily upon Jean Baudrillard's conceptions of simulacra and hyperreality, he argues that consumers adapt to the differences between simulated and real worlds, by accepting the replacement of tangibles by simulations, and by aiming to situate their selves seamlessly between these two worlds. He further argues that within consumers' lives cyberspace manifests itself as a field of tensions and discourses of power, and that consumers feel that mastery of this ethereal domain empowers them. He concludes by arguing that consumers use cyberspace as a place to create lived experience narratives, and that these narratives become an important component of their life-worlds.
Shakeel is a consumer researcher at Dublin City University. His diverse background includes Aircraft engineering and project management. For the last few years he has researched extensively in the area of media and computer simulations and has contributed regularly to the Advances in Consumer Research publications.