Reclaiming Public Space: Sound and Mobile Media Use by Teenagers

Linda O Keeffe, Aphra Kerr


This article explores the relationship between teenagers, mobile media, and public spaces in the city. We use a range of qualitative methods, including interviews, sound walks, sound maps, and photography, to explore how teenagers use mobile media to respond to the visual and sonic landscape of a public space in Dublin, Ireland. This space was a “nonplace” for our contemporary participants from which they felt economically, socially, visually, and aurally excluded. They responded by using mobile media to create safe, centripetal, and meaningful spaces. Our findings underline the role that local soundscapes play in understanding the audio and mobile media practices of teenagers in public spaces.


public space, nonplace, representational space, soundscape, mobility, sound walking, mobile media

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