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Alice Marwick

In: The SAGE Handbook of Social Media

Chapter 17: Silicon Valley and the Social Media Industry

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Silicon Valley and the Social Media Industry
Silicon Valley and the social media industry
Alice Marwick
Introduction

The global center for venture-backed technology startups, both in terms of sheer numbers of companies, employees, and money, as well as mythological importance, is Silicon Valley in Northern California. When writing critically about the industry of social media, two things are difficult to avoid. First, it is tempting to adopt a dismissive or mocking stance. The peculiar combination of naive idealism and free market worship that characterizes tech startups is ripe for ridicule, especially when examined outside its Northern Californian context. The scramble to build the best laundry startup (Pressler, 2014), the recent $120 million venture capital (VC) investment in a $700 wi-fi enabled juicer (Ferdman and Ingraham, 2016), or ...

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