DIY videos on YouTube: Identity and possibility in the age of algorithms

Christine T. Wolf


This paper analyzes interviews with individuals discussing their experiences of searching for and watching DIY videos on YouTube. By exploring the entanglement of individuals’ search practices and the algorithmic underpinnings of the platform, this paper examines how experiences on Web 2.0 platforms can work to narrow, rather than widen, information worlds. Contributing to ongoing conversations in critical algorithm studies, this paper illustrates how even mundane practices like watching home repair videos on YouTube can play a role in identity-making and the shaping of modern subjectivities.

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