Datafication of family life makes “the problematic relation between the home and the outside” (to use David Morley’s words) complex, multi-faceted and contradictory as never before. My paper seeks to address these challenges by focusing on mediatization of households by empirical investigation (IDIs and FGIs with “family members”) of mundane media practices, shared notions of space, and internal and external household social relations. In this regard, media are embedded in domestic routines and may foster new ones: boundaries of mediated domesticities differ for each family member, while being unstable, incoherent, and sometimes even contradictory.
The goal of the paper is thus to learn how family members negotiate home privacies by media-oriented practices. In particular, I seek to reconstruct both symbolic and material acts of privacy negotiations that altogether establish (and sometimes disrupt) boundaries between home and the outside world. Thus, I analyze family privacies as (a) always complex, context-bound and constantly reconsidered, (b) shaped by imaginaries (understandings, expectations, and evaluations) and practices that mutually reinforce each other, and (c) subjects of ongoing negotiations.
In particular, I discuss:
– horizontal acts of privacy violations performed by colleagues, friends and, not least, family members;
– changing limits of the private – being challenged, flexible, prone to violation, and subject of mutual negotiations;
– platformization of education/work environments escalating power-related tensions affecting family members: class-related pressures (shortage of resources including hardware, space & time), growing excess of power within particular relations during the pandemic (distant learning, tracking and desktime apps, parental/supervisor control software);
– new norms as response to platformization: by drawing upon the Raymond Williams idea of culture as a whole way of life, the concept of self-exposure as a whole way of life (when mediated visibility is ongoingly negotiated and compromised) is introduced and discussed how it affects family life.