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Infoselves. The Value of Online Identity. Edition No. 1

  • ID: 5230753
  • Book
  • February 2021
  • 208 Pages
  • John Wiley and Sons Ltd
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Infoselves delivers a multifaceted analysis of the commodification of self-identity online, from both a domination and a liberation perspective. Drawing on multiple resources, the book places its discussion of online identity within the larger context of self-identity evolution, arguing for the recognition of online identity as a legitimate component of the self-identity system. Advertising executive turned academic, Demetra Garbașevschi offers readers the means to understand the way our online identities are formed and used, to reflect on the future of self-identity, and to become more aware of the radical implications of our digital footprint.

Readers will discover what it means to be an infoself in a deep digital context, from exploring the informational makeup of self-identity, to examining the various sources of identity information found online, to exposing the uses of this information through both latent and assertive self-commodification. Considering the many sources of information contributing to our identity narrative online, some beyond our direct control, managing the self is presented as one the greatest challenges of our digital present.

The book includes illuminating discussions of a variety of topics within the subject of online identity, such as:

  • Foundational concepts related to the idea of identity, including references to the works of Erik Erikson, symbolic interactionists, and social dramaturgy
  • The evolution of online identity, with examinations of early and current viewpoints of the phenomenon
  • Personal branding online as the epitome of self-commodification, with examples from online celebrity, micro-celebrity, and nano-celebrity
  • Original research contributing to the larger discussion about how identities are constructed and performed through-the-line

Perfect for graduate students in advertising, branding, and public relations, Infoselves also belongs on the bookshelves of those studying fields involving digital media. Working professionals in any of these areas will also benefit from this book’s insightful analyses of a variety of viewpoints on online identity.

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Introduction: A Moment in Time and Our Self-Identity Dilemma 1

Chapter Overview 9

References 11

1 Identity and the Value of Self-Commodification 13

1.1 “It’s Complicated” 13

1.2 The Identity of Identity 14

1.3 The Logic of Self-Commodification 23

1.4 A Brief History of Online Identity 36

1.5 Identity Through-the-Line 47

References 47

2 The Datafied Identity and Latent Self-Commodification 53

2.1 The Internet of Us 53

2.2 The Digital Context of Identity Building 55

2.3 The New Nature of Identity 71

2.4 The Identity Economy 79

2.5 Datafied, Commodified 85

References 86

3 The Rise of Assertive Self-Commodification 91

3.1 Two Sides to Every Story 91

3.2 The Self as a Branded Commodity 92

3.3 The Business of Running the Self 111

3.4 Self-Branding, Influencership, and Authenticity 123

3.5 The Transformative Power of Personal Branding 126

References 127

4 Researching Online Identity 134

4.1 Lessons From an Unexpected Social Experiment 134

4.2 Why Investigate? 138

4.3 From Zero to Theory: A Grounded Theory Approach 149

4.4 Quantifying Online Identity 158

4.5 As Long as We Know … 173

References 174

Conclusion: Managing Infoselves 179

References 185

Index 186

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Demetra Garbasevschi
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