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date: 12 November 2019

Abstract and Keywords

New media and the new communication spaces they bring are often heralded as revolutionary contexts of language use. This chapter aims to look beyond this hype to consider the effects of this recent context of use on existing language policy theory. An initial case study is Facebook and its Translations application, which I examine using virtual ethnographic methods. In this context, the commercial entity Facebook and the individuals of the Irish language Translations application are the primary language policy actors, developing the de facto language policy of this domain and affecting the multilingual World Wide Web. It is concluded that commercial entities, technological developments, and individuals are not merely agents or actors in language policy processes. Instead, the author adopts the concepts of media convergence, participatory culture, and collective intelligence to understand how media producers and consumers act in new and unpredictable ways in language policy processes online.

Keywords: collective intelligence, convergence, digital media, Facebook, Irish Language Translations Application, language policy, media convergence, media, participatory culture

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