Daniel S. Griffin
laughing at searches

16 October 2022 - Everett

*My PhD dissertation looks at jokes made about searching. Shared self- & group-directed joking among data engineers construct an appropriate reliance on web searching at work for work.

They tell the jokes to connect, test and re-see rather than stigmatize the searching practices.

But they generally keep their web searches private so people don’t laugh at them or otherwise judge and treat them poorly. While searching is accepted, individual searches are recognized as too intimate to share. Could it be otherwise?

What if instead we could find ways to share some of our searches, our curiosity, with others in ways that drive new wonderings—letting our questions spread (and challenge what searching the web might look like)? The replies to this child’s searches shows some of what is possible.

So can we use search jokes as “entry points” (Burrell 2009) to defamiliarize (Bell et al. 2005) and join as people “make, unmake and remake the search engine” (Sundin et al. 2017) & “imagine search with a variety of other possibilities” (Noble 2018).

*This post is drawn from a short Twitter thread.