Auto-Ethnographic Thesis

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: Online hostility and mockery, often known as "trolling," is a phenomenon almost as old as the internet itself.

Nevertheless, the rise in trolling aimed at researchers using non-traditional, creative methodologies, such as autoethnography, remains severely under-explored.

There it is, my trusty list of commonly used definitions of autoethnography.

Glancing at the contents, my eyes select: "Autoethnography is an approach to research and writing that seeks to describe and systematically analyze ()" (ELLIS, ADAMS & BOCHNER, 2011, §1). a form of self-narrative that places the self within a social context.

Tweets can be forwarded or "retweeted" by other users to their own feed. Users are notified when someone re-tweets, replies to, or likes one of their tweets. I see a link to an opinion piece on a new UK Teaching Excellence Framework. A colleague is also re-tweeting practical tips for students sitting exams. My fingers are tired and I keep having to go back and retype, deleting "autoethjngrapy" "authoethnograophy," until I get it right. I stare at the screen, trying to take in what I've just read. And I replied earnestly "it's primarily for women, honey," followed by "and, well, it's usually just about an hour." And he stood there, cheeky grin and dimpled cheeks, finding my compulsion to give an accurate answer to questions amusing. ["Writing an "autoethnographic" paper should lead to immediate termination." This is a response to another tweet by a user who self-identifies their account as being for intelligent, evidence-respecting where the author notes her work is autoethnographic.

I follow mostly my own tribe: lawyers, academics, educationalists. Most of the tweets in front of me are concerned with academic practice, on way or another. I hit the return key, with purpose, and the "clunk" resonates around my vacant room. My smiling face stares back at the top of the screen. I have the capacity to get things wrong, and to misjudge tone and mood. Alongside the screen shot, the intelligent, evidence-respecting academic Twitter user has written—seemingly to provoke their followers' ire—"This is an accepted conference paper." [] Quickly, I come across other tweets by the same Twitter user.

This essay seeks to fill the gap in the literature and make a contribution to the discourse on autoethnographic research.

Writing autoethnographically, I share my experience of discovering vile, misogynist, and cruel trolling of autoethnographers and their work on the social media platform Twitter.

The art of deliberately, cleverly and secretly pissing people off via the internet, using dialogue.

Trolling does not mean just making rude remarks: Shouting swear words at someone doesn't count as trolling; it's just flaming, and isn't funny.


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