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Social Media

Social Media
A Critical Introduction

Second Edition

March 2017 | 400 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
With social media changing how we use and understand everything from communication and the news to transport, it is now essential to ask the right kinds of questions about the business and politics of social media. Equip your students with the critical thinking they need to understand the complexities and contradictions of social media and make informed judgements. The new Second Edition explores the politics and economy of social media in China, the sharing economy of Uber and Airbnb, and more!

Available with Perusall—an eBook that makes it easier to prepare for class
Perusall is an award-winning eBook platform featuring social annotation tools that allow students and instructors to collaboratively mark up and discuss their SAGE textbook. Backed by research and supported by technological innovations developed at Harvard University, this process of learning through collaborative annotation keeps your students engaged and makes teaching easier and more effective. Learn more.
What is a Critical Introduction to Social Media?
What are Social Media and Big Data?
Social Media as Participatory Culture
Social Media and Communication Power
The Power and Political Economy of Social Media
Google: Good or Evil Search Engine?
Facebook: Surveillance in the Age of Edward Snowden
Twitter and Democracy: A New Public Sphere?
Weibo and Chinese Capitalism
The Political Economy of Online Sharing Platforms in the Age of Airbnb and Uber
WikiLeaks: Can We Make Power Transparent?
Wikipedia: A New Democratic Form of Collaborative Work and Production?
Conclusion: Social Media and its Alternatives – Towards a Truly Social Media


Article on the sharing economy

Christian Fuchs discusses the legal struggles of Uber drivers while debunking the myth that the capitalist sharing economy is fair. 
The second edition of  “Social Media: A Critical Introduction”  will contain a chapter on “The Political Economy of Online Sharing Platforms in the Age of Airbnb and Uber”.

Interview with Christian Fuchs

Watch a conversation between Christian Fuchs and Simon Lindgren to learn what it means to be truly critical in social media and look at the dark side of the internet, and also to explore concepts such as public service internetplay labour, privacy fetishism and digital Marxism.

Timely new chapters on China and on the “sharing economy” of Uber and Airbnb strengthen an already vital contribution to communication studies. Through the lens of critical theory, Fuchs provides the essential text for students of our new media world.

Vincent Mosco
Queen's University, Ontario

A definitive book for all social media users who feel powerless and exploited, who long for dignity, freedom, and a more democratic Internet - illuminated, again, by critical theory.

Jack Qiu
The Chinese University of Hong Kong

Christian Fuch’s revised text should be mandatory reading for students, scholars, or anyone trying to understand the changes and continuity that characterize social media. The book is a smart, thorough and well-documented resource that should be useful to all.

Janet Wasko
University of Oregon

An up to date resource for my learners!

Dr Memory Mabika
Communication and Applied Language Studies, University of Venda
December 8, 2016

a book that covers all the current studies related to social media. it discusses issues of participatory audience and how such phenomenon changes social media context. a must for any student who is exploring social media

Ms Irena Loveikaite
College Street Campus, Waterford Institute of Technology
March 30, 2017
Key features
  • Lays bare the structures and power relations at the heart of our media landscape
  • Explores the sharing economy of Uber and Airbnb in a brand new chapter
  • Takes us into the politics and economy of social media in China
  • Puts forward powerful arguments for how to achieve a social media that serves the purposes of a just and fair world

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter 5: The Power and Political Economy of Social Media

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