The focus of this book is on the media representations of the use of the Internet in seeking intimate connections-be it a committed relationship, a hook-up, or a community in which to dabble in fringe sexual practices. Popular culture (film, narrative television, the news media, and advertising) present two very distinct pictures of the use of the Internet as related to intimacy. From news reports about victims of online dating, to the presentation of the desperate and dateless, the perverts and the deviants, a distinct frame for the intimacy/Internet connection is negativity. In some examples however, a changing picture is emerging. The ubiquitousness of Internet use today has meant a slow increase in comparatively more positive representations of successful online romances in the news, resulting in more positive-spin advertising and a more even-handed presence of such liaisons in narrative television and film. Both the positive and the negative media representations are categorised and analysed in this book to explore what they reveal about the intersection of gender, sexuality, techlogy and the changing mores regarding intimacy.
Lauren Rosewarne is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Melbourne, Australia. She is the author of seven books, most recently Cyberbullies, Cyberactivists, Cyberpredators: Film, TV, and Internet Stereotypes, and specializes in gender, sexuality and popular culture.