My first book, Internet Celebrity: Understanding Fame Online, was published two weeks ago. Academic projects can often feel like an independent, lonely, solo endeavour, but the truth is that all of us are supported by an amazing network of colleagues and loved ones. Since it is always difficult to gauge the potential and eventual audience for a piece of academic writing (especially with a pricetag), I would like to publicly share the acknowledgements from this book to thank my support crew.
My second book, Microcelebrity Around The Globe: Approaches to Cultures of Internet Fame, will be published in December this year, and I greatly appreciate everyone’s kind words from the Overly Honest Acknowledgements posted earlier this month.
I have chanced upon the rare luck of being mentored by some of the most intelligent, generous, and caring academics in my field. While there are too many to name here in this book, I would like to thank especially Theresa M. Senft for being an ever critical and mentoring intellectual champion of my research as I build on her milestone work on microcelebrity. Special thanks to my colleagues Annette Markham and Katrin Tiidenberg who first suggested that I write this book one glorious evening in July 2017, as we lounged over fancy, home-cooked feasts on the coziest rooftop in Aarhus.
Portions of this work were presented at various conferences and seminars, during which I have had the opportunity to field thought-provoking Q&As. While there have been several such events, I would like especially to thank the organizers and attendees of the Affective Politics of Social Media conference at the University of Turku; the Association of Internet Researchers conference 2017 in Tartu; the Australian and New Zealand Communication Association conference 2017 at the University of Sydney; the Centre for Culture and Technology (CCAT) seminar series at Curtin University; the Digitizing Early Childhood International Conference in Perth; and the Digital Living Summer School Programme at Aarhus University.
I wrote this text in the months during which I was a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Media Management and Transformation Centre (MMTC) at Jönköping University, and Adjunct Research Fellow at the Centre for Culture and Technology (CCAT) at Curtin University. I am grateful for the support and care of my colleagues at both institutions and would like to thank Leona Achtenhagen, Ingrid Aronsson, Barbara Eklöf, Mart Ots, and Emilia Florin Samuelsson from the MMTC, and Emma de Francisco, John Hartley, Tama Leaver, and Lucy Montgomery from the CCAT.
At Emerald Publishing, I am indebted to Jen McCall who first commissioned this text, Rachel Ward for managing the tiresome administrative work, and Sarah Broadley for expertly laboring over marketing the book. I thank also the anonymous reviewers for giving their critical feedback on my work, and the leading scholars in celebrity studies who have generously provided expert blurbs.
The beautiful line sketches were provided by LIBA Studio, to whom I express my admiration of their creativity and my gratitude for their expertise. I would also like to acknowledge Jill Walker Rettberg from whom I adapted this innovative imaging method.
Several ideas and case studies throughout the book were adapted from posts on my academic blog wishcrys.com, on which I write about developments in the world of internet celebrities and vernacular social media cultures. For this, I am thankful to anyone who has ever read, shared, or commented on my running streams of consciousness (affectionately known as ‘brainfarts’ to my readers) on any of my blogs since 2008.
On social media, I crowdsourced examples of everyone’s favorite internet snippet, artifact, icon, or personality to consider a cultural variety of case studies for this book. Thank you to everyone who responded to me. It was a wild experience learning about your guilty pleasures on the internet ヽ(o^▽^o)ノ.
To some of my most favorite peers in my work life: Kath Albury, Megan Lindsay Brown, Paul Byron, Jocelyn Cleghorn, Stefanie Duguay, Sara Ekberg, Natalie Hendry, Tim Highfield, Jenny Kennedy, Liew Kai Khiun, Maki Mayer, Kristian Møller, Natalie Pang, Brady Robards, Gabriele de Seta, Sander Schwartz, Tan Shao Han, Katrin Tiidenberg, Son Vivienne, Katie Warfield, and Meg Zeng, thank you for nourishing academia (and my life) with your hearts and your brains ⊂( ́• ω •`⊂).
To my people at home: Char+Nick, Jo+Jon, Wei+Joe, thank you for growing old with me <3.
To my person, Sherm: Thank you for being such a wonderfully weird human being. May we ever be blessed with highspeed internet in our home.
And finally, to you, the reader: Thank you for picking up this book. Happy rabbit-holing. Long live the internet.