Mediascapes of Memory: Popular Discussions about History on Russian Social Media Sites
The article considers the phenomenon of nostalgia for the late Soviet times. The author presents the results of his observations over the nostalgia segment of the Russian blogosphere. The article is based on the concepts of the past, collective memory and nostalgia, which have been worked out by M. Halbwachs, D. Lowenthal and S. Boym.
The development of local media products gives citizens a chance to struggle for the city. In some cases, it means literally to appropriate urban space and to maintain control over it within the game (“Ingress the Game”). In other cases, it refers to attempts to produce a legitimate language of urban descriptions within the district blog (“Local blogs”). We distinguish different media formats containing the specific organization of citizens’ participation in urban life and analyze their initial goals and failures. Reflecting upon some of the ways how everyday life practices, an imaginary dimension of the city and technical issues of communication are linked together, we conclude that new media are as a simulator of more complex social interactions. The “Local blogs” project provides the communication platform that lacks the mechanism of self-presentation and has too many alternatives in field of social networks. Meantime the foolproof gameplay of Ingress integrated with other services and networks tends to overcome the simplified idea of competition and appropriation for constructing more advanced urban descriptions of a consolidated game community.
This article is about nostalgic memory of soviet regional intelligentsia.