Murdoch University Research Repository

Welcome to the Murdoch University Research Repository

The Murdoch University Research Repository is an open access digital collection of research
created by Murdoch University staff, researchers and postgraduate students.

Learn more

Digital placemaking and networked corporeality: Embodied mobile media practices in domestic space during Covid-19

Hardley, J.ORCID: 0000-0002-0029-3726 and Richardson, I. (2020) Digital placemaking and networked corporeality: Embodied mobile media practices in domestic space during Covid-19. Convergence: The International Journal of Research into New Media Technologies . Online First.

Link to Published Version:
*Subscription may be required


In contemporary life, the mobile phone is integral to digital and material placemaking practices. In this article, drawing on ethnographic analysis conducted in Perth and Melbourne (Australia) in the first months of the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, we explore how this relation has been recalibrated as an effect of ‘stay-at-home’ restrictions. We first provide a brief overview of our methodological and interpretative approach – drawing from postphenomenology as a useful framework for understanding the mobile–body–place relation and digital placemaking at home. Second, we consider how mobile media are ‘situated’ in the domestic environment. Third, through an analysis of participant narratives, we explore the concept of net locality (Gordon and de Souza e Silva (2011) through the lens of embodiment theory and suggest that the Covid-19 context has altered our experience of ‘networked corporeality’. Finally, we discuss the ambiguity of digital intimacy in the decoupling of mobile media and the body as a result of a rapid increase in both screen time and time spent at home. Throughout the article, we argue that mobile media use in the home is thoroughly enmeshed in the shifting boundaries of privacy, placemaking and domestic space. We question how the placemaking functionality of mobile media, the intimate body–technology relation specific to mobile media practices and ‘being-at-home’ were subsequently modified by physical distancing and isolation.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): Creative Media, Arts and Design
Publisher: International Council for Adult Education
Copyright: © 2021 by SAGE Publications
Item Control Page Item Control Page