‘Freshly Generated for You, and Barack Obama’: How Social Media Represent Your Life
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This article discusses the ways in which social media help us craft the narratives of our lives. Many discussions of social media look at self-presentation and the construction of identity on social network sites in particular and the Internet in general. This article switches the focus from the moment of self-construction and instead looks at ways in which social media represent our lives by filtering the data we feed into them through templates and by displaying simplified patterns, visualizations and narratives back to us. The article argues that social media help users to see themselves by taking their raw data and representing them in structured form, and gives examples of different ways in which this data is presented.