Two dissertation-related things I’ve been working on simultaneously: my final chapter of comps, which I’m writing about affinity space ethnography/connective ethnography, and engaging more systematically with cosplayers. I went to Greensboro Comicon this weekend and actually interacted with cosplayers a little more than I have in the past, and now I’m exploring all the different ways cosplayers find each other.

(I’ve been a casual/closet cosplayer for many years, but never really connected with other cosplayers before.)

When I started my comps I wasn’t sure what data sources I would use to explore how cosplayers exhibit collective intelligence online, but now I’m realizing that Twitch & Discord may be where it’s at. As far as online research goes I think looking at those is fairly cutting edge stuff, and I think they’re great examples of what Lammers, Curwood, and Magnifico talk about when they say that researchers need to engage on multiple platforms if they’re going to understand the way practices move across an affinity space.

My brain’s awhirl with questions about the ethics of research on Twitch and Discord, now. Also, I’m feeling a bit reinvigorated with respect to my work, and that’s great.

Kimberly Hirsh @kimberlyhirsh