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Invisible Search and Online Search Engines: The Ubiquity of Search in Everyday Life

Jutta Haider (Lund University, Sweden) Olof Sundin (Lund University, Sweden)



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19 March 2019
Library & information sciences; Sociology; Internet guides & online services; Computer science
Invisible Search and Online Search Engines considers the use of search engines in contemporary everyday life and the challenges this poses for media and information literacy. Looking for mediated information is mostly done online and arbitrated by the various tools and devices that people carry with them on a daily basis. Because of this, search engines have a significant impact on the structure of our lives, and personal and public memories. Haider and Sundin consider what this means for society, whilst also uniting research on information retrieval with research on how people actually look for and encounter information.

Search engines are now one of society's key infrastructures for knowing and becoming informed. While their use is dispersed across myriads of social practices, where they have acquired close to naturalised positions, they are commercially and technically centralised. Arguing that search, searching, and search engines have become so widely used that we have stopped noticing them, Haider and Sundin consider what it means to be so reliant on this all-encompassing and increasingly invisible information infrastructure.

Invisible Search and Online Search Engines is the first book to approach search and search engines from a perspective that combines insights from the technical expertise of information science research with a social science and humanities approach. As such, the book should be essential reading for academics, researchers, and students working on and studying information science, library and information science (LIS), media studies, journalism, digital cultures, and educational sciences.
By:   Jutta Haider (Lund University Sweden), Olof Sundin (Lund University, Sweden)
Imprint:   Routledge
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 234mm,  Width: 156mm, 
Weight:   454g
ISBN:   9781138328600
ISBN 10:   113832860X
Pages:   152
Publication Date:   19 March 2019
Audience:   College/higher education ,  Further / Higher Education ,  A / AS level
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Jutta Haider is an Associate Professor in Information Studies at the Department of Arts and Cultural Sciences, Lund University, Sweden. She has published widely on digital cultures' emerging conditions for production, use, and distribution of knowledge and information. This includes work on environmental information and on knowledge institutions, including encyclopaedias, search engines, and the scholarly communication system. Olof Sundin is Professor in Information Studies at the Department of Arts and Cultural Sciences, Lund University, Sweden. His work concerns mainly information literacies and practices in various settings. More precisely, he researches the configuration of information in contemporary society, the construction of trustworthiness of public knowledge, and information searching and use.

Reviews for Invisible Search and Online Search Engines: The Ubiquity of Search in Everyday Life

This is an excellent book that provides a unique perspective on the field of web search studies. Jutta Haider and Olof Sundin place search where it is best placed: in everyday life. Search has become neither the sole activity of finding reliable information on important topics nor just looking up facts or trivia but is used for both purposes interchangeably. This book, which is well-grounded in the literature from different fields, provides an excellent basis for understanding search as an integral part of everyday life. - Dirk Lewandowski, Hamburg University of Applied Sciences, Germany This is a marvelously written, beautifully researched volume which explores the centrality of search to our lives. It ranges fluently across a number of fields to produce fresh insights into topics such as the creation of new temporalities and meaning-making in information infrastructures. - Geoffrey Bowker, University of California Irvine, USA Search is probably the most important concept in library and information science and is increasing, as demonstrated in the book, also studied by many other disciplines, including media studies and science studies. The book does a great job by presenting new knowledge of such an interdisciplinary nature. It is well known that there are many perspectives (or 'paradigms') in these fields, and this book advocates that search and search engines should be based in the perspective of everyday life and practice studies, and thereby it represents an important new voice in this extremely important field. - Birger Hjorland, University of Copenhagen, Denmark

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