Advancing digital disconnection research: Introduction to the special issue
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionConvergence. The International Journal of Research into New Media Technologies. 2021, 27 (6), 1529-1535. 10.1177/13548565211057518
Over the past decade, scholarly interest in “digital disconnection” and related concepts has grown in media and communication studies, and in related disciplines. The idea of digital disconnection explicitly references digitalization as a key societal development, creating conditions of intensified and embedded media involvement across social life. The notion of digital disconnection thereby represents a critical response to mediated conditions that characterize our societies and permeate our everyday lives. In this special issue, we take stock of the contributions, challenges, and promises of digital disconnection research. We showcase how digital disconnection scholarship intersects with other developments in media and communication research, and is part of debates and empirical analysis in related disciplines from tourism studies to psychology. We argue that one of the key strengths of the emergent work is the variety of social domains and conceptual debates that are included and explored in digital disconnection research. On the other hand, we also point to the need for further methodological development, conceptual consolidation, and empirical diversity, particularly in the face of global inequalities and ongoing crises.