Weaving Mediation and Embodiment: The Media Ethnographer as Figurations of Mediation

Frédérik Lesage, Alberto Lusoli


Building on previous ethnographic approaches, we propose a framework to describe and analyze how media ethnographers are themselves constituted in relation to processes of mediatization. Drawing from mediatization theory, we advance a twofold conception of the media ethnographer as being composed by interweaving processes of embodiment and mediation, which we refer to as figurations of mediation. Using a fourfold typology, we show how different kinds of figurations of mediation establish the media ethnographer’s relations to the field, to research participants, and to research instruments in different ways. We argue that this framework affords media ethnographers the conceptual and methodological tools required to empirically observe and describe how the media ethnographer shifts from compositions through, in, of, and with media. Finally, we demonstrate how this framework can be operationalized by applying it to a case study of startup workers in Vancouver that involves the online platform Meetup.


mediatization, figurations, mediation, media ethnography, media manifold, startup culture

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