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OxDeg: The Internet is for Strangers: Virtual and real modes of obligation, the case of Timor Leste

Date & Time:
16:30 - 18:00,
Wednesday 24 January, 2018


This presentation will explore questions how well traditional ethnographic and cross-cultural concepts map onto virtual communities. While many of the ties that bind real groups also appear in online communities – rituals, structures of prestige, unwritten codes of practice, etc. There are some aspects of real life communities from cultures that have traditionally been called High-Context that seem to have no obvious parallels with the same consequences on real life obligations. I will present several vignettes from observing real world and virtual interactions in Timor Leste and explore the difference between existential obligations that bind together real world groups and epistemic obligations that develop in online communities, as well as their overlaps.

The hashtag to use for tweeting about this event is #OxDeg

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  • Name: Dominik Lukes
  • Affiliation: Saïd Business School
  • Role:
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  • Bio: Dominik Lukes (@TechCzech) currently works as a Digital Learning Technologist at Saïd Business School, University of Oxford. He has previously worked at the intersection of education, research and technology in various roles. He worked as language specialist and training director for the US Peace Corps in over 15 countries including Kazakhstan, Albania and Timor Leste. Immediately prior to joining Saïd Business School, we was the Senior Education and Technology Specialist for Dyslexia Action working on developing online courses and participating in international research projects. He has published and presented papers in in construction grammar, discourse analysis, metaphor, and framing. He was the co-editor of Critical Approaches to Discourse Analysis Discourse Analysis and translated  George Lakoff’s Women, Fire, and Dangerous Things into Czech. He blogs on and