ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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‘Timepass’ Development

Situating Social Media in Rural Rajasthan

​Significant empirical gaps between the technocratic discourse and the grass-roots experiences of technology are exemplified by the growing usage of social and digital media in rural areas where Information and Communications Technologies for Development and e-governance pilot projects have failed to meet their goals. Based on an ethnographic study of information and communication technologies in two villages of Rajasthan, the paper aims to situate social and digital media in the complex rural society and media ecology using co-constructivist approaches. Focusing on context-sensitive meaning-making of icts, the paper seeks to contribute to an empirically sound discourse on media, technology and rural society in India.

The research on which this paper is based was supported by the Sarai Social Media Fellowship 2014. I am grateful to Ravi Sundaram, Aakash Solanki, Sarah McKeever and an anonymous reviewer for their valuable feedback. Thanks to my teachers Madhumita Mazumdar, Vishvajit Pandya and Shiv Visvanathan, for introducing me to the “field.”


All technologies incite around them that whirlwind of new worlds. Far from primarily fulfilling a purpose, they start by exploring heterogeneous universes that nothing, up to that point, could have foreseen and behind which trail new functions.

—Bruno Latour

(Qtd in Burrell 2012: 10)

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Updated On : 30th Nov, 2017
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