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Archiving of Internet Content

Steve Schneider and Kirsten Foot


Communication scholars interested in new media are increasingly archiving content of the →  Internet or “web content,” and studying web archives to examine retrospectively content produced and distributed on the web, and the behavior of those producing, sharing, and using the world wide web. Although web archiving has been actively pursued since the mid-1990s, new media scholars have more recently begun to find web archives helpful as they seek to understand developments related to the web in a variety of ways. These may involve adapting traditional methods of social research such as content analysis (→  Content Analysis, Qualitative ; Content Analysis, Quantitative ), ethnography (→  Ethnography of Communication ), focus groups, →  Surveys , and experiments (→  Experimental Design ) or developing methods such as network ethnography (→  Network Analysis ), hyperlink analysis, and other approaches to structural or phenomenological analyses of the web (→  Online Research ). The impetus for web archiving, for both scholarly and historical purposes, dates from the 1980s, as institutions increasingly shifted their records from paper to electronic form. With the advent of the world wide web in the early 1990s, this concern grew significantly, as greater numbers of institutions and individuals began producing documents in digital form only, rendering traditional modes of archiving less ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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