Counternarratives in Online Crime-Solving Communities

Kristina Downs (Tarleton State University)

This paper will examine the construction and used of counternarratives in online crime-solving communities. These counternarratives deliberately subvert the official stories put forth by law enforcement and mainstream media. In light of growing mistrust of law enforcement entities as well as of mainstream media, these counternarratives provide important insight into vernacular perspectives not only of the specific crimes being discussed but also of law enforcement, media, and crime and social order more generally. I will analyze trends in these counternarratives and show what they reveal about contemporary anxieties related to official law enforcement entities.

Part of 36-03 Living and Working Online, Wednesday, October 20, 5:15 pm–6:45 pm