Problematisation of my Media Niche
Although I explored my personal knowledge on my media niche ‘makeup’ in my previous blog, in order to completely understand this online community “it is important to distinguish between the relatively stable ‘contextual’ fields of bounded online communities and the fluid, ‘meta-fields’ resulting from the aggregation of scattered communicative contents based on their metadata” (Airoldi, 2018). Due to this, I have decided to compile an ethnographic study to introduce the world to the reality of this community, allow others to understand its purpose and for not only others but also for me personally to gain comprehensive knowledge of the “methodology for studies of cultures and peoples, with the assumption that they have something in common” (Sobolewska, E and Turner, T, 2009).
It has come to my realisation that those who aren’t as familiar with makeup or who aren’t a part of the makeup community, have the idea that people only wear makeup if they don’t feel confident with themselves and need to cover their imperfections. This is completely inaccurate and this study will allow me to prove this and share the cultural, financial and social reason as to why this community has grown and what its purpose is.
My Research Plan
In order to gain the information I need, I will:
- Observe @lsgmakeup and stay up to date with her posts and stories.
- Investigate the amount of engagement she receives.
- Explore reasons as to why she does makeup, is it only on herself? Does she have clients?
- Does she use her platform for other reasons?
- Observe and find other makeup artists on Instagram and explore their reasoning for wearing/sharing makeup.
- Reflect on the amount of engagement and the number of likes I receive on my beauty weblog page.
- Collect additional information from articles and blog posts.
Auto-ethnography and observation will allow for me to explore the reasons and personal experiences that lead this community to create certain looks. As I am observing Lsgmakeup’s Instagram page and finding other makeup artists, I will collect all of my findings and compile them onto a Word document. This document will include images, links, quotes, screenshots, written information etc. This will allow for all my information to be stored in one place, making the final process of producing a research report a lot easier and time manageable.
My Research Schedule
A schedule is very important to ensure that I receive all the information I need within a certain amount of time and to manage my time efficiently. To ensure this happens and that I stay on task, I have created a chart that provides what I will need to do in each week.
This schedule will benefit me as I will know what I should be up to in each week, I have decided to refer to weeks instead of days as it gives me more freedom to work around other school work or things planned ahead of time.
Airoldi, M, 2018, ‘Ethnography and the digital fields of social media’, International Journal of Social Research Methodology, 21:6, pp. 661-673.
Scicluna, A, 2018, ‘Identity in the Makeup Community’, Weblog post, Medium, viewed Sunday 23 2020. https://medium.com/@audreyscicluna/shedding-light-on-the-makeup-community-4d1058286e3b
Sobolewska, E and Turner, T, 2009, ‘Auto-Ethnography: Problems, Pitfalls and Promise’, HCI Educators 2009 – Playing with our education, pp. 91-97.