Wagging the dog

Something I've been mulling over but not really formalising yet is the role of the link in transliteracy. There is both a social role to linking but also a textual role. For example, Chris Joseph (one of the partites) recently blogged about how just one link from Writing & The Digital Life moved him a million places up Technorati's charts.
Via social networking the link is a social relationship. Links are also, however, meaningful as texts. They bring items together among other things. Links are both content and context. Maybe transliteracy in this respect is in part about link literacy; how do we read links? what is the grammar of linking? what are the social norms? when can we not link?

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One thought on “Wagging the dog

  1. Hi Bruce,
    Interesting post. I’ve been thinking about links in the context of my own research on web fictions and narrative theory. I agree with you that links are both context and context, like histoire and discours. In chapter one I’ve talked a bit about how links function in a story as part of the story – how do they influence the reader, what do they represent, does the word “rain” link to a section dealing with rain – and as possible worlds – what “spaces” or places come into being through the link? What about links that are visible (underlined, different colour etc…) and those that aren’t? How might the experience of the link then be different? The link is fundamental to online works, it creates associations, ties, connections on multiple levels.

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