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WiFi publics: defining community and technology at Montreal’s Île Sans Fil

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Community Wi-Fi projects motivate volunteers to participate in building technology and working towards shared social goals. They also hold the potential to shift the provision of communications access away from corporate and towards more public interest models. This chapter discusses how these two modes of engagement, expressed through the social relations between community Wi-Fi activists as well as through the technologies they build, develop both communities and publics. It identifies a tension between the “geek publics” produced among the volunteers in community Wi-Fi projects, and the “community-publics” that proponents imagine will be created through more localized, democratized access to the internet. An earlier version of this chapter was published as Wi-Fi Publics: Producing Community and Technology” in Information, Communication and Society 8 (1068-1088).

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en

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application/pdf

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http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/29450/1/WiFi_Publics_%28LSERO%29.doc.pdf

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