Amelia Acker

Biography

Amelia Acker studies the emergence and standardization of new information objects in wireless communication networks. Currently, she is researching information infrastructures and digital preservation contexts that support long term cultural memory and literacy.



Her award-winning dissertation was a history of the text message as it became a standardized information object. This research demonstrated how the infrastructure of mobile communication, including transmission protocols and the stabilization of the SMS data format, is one of the seminal developments in present-day networked, digital culture. Amelias dissertation is one of the first scholarly works to describe the transformation of the mobile phone to a reading and writing machine that supports new kinds of literacies.



Amelias current research program addresses emerging digital traces and mobile computing cultures that are shaped by new data collection practices amongst different kinds of users, designers, technologists, and institutions. Her research has been funded by grants from the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS), and has been published in journals such as the Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology (JASIST), Archival Science, and the Annals of the History of Computing.



From 2006 to 2014 Amelia worked as an archivist, librarian, and preservation consultant for libraries and archives in Southern California. During her PhD she worked as an arts librarian and cataloger for John Baldessari. Prior to joining the faculty at UT Austin, Amelia served for two years as an assistant professor and lead faculty of the archives program at the University of Pittsburghs iSchool.

Degrees

Doctor of Philosophy, Information Studies, 2014
University of California, Los Angeles.



Master of Library & Information Science, 2008
University of California, Los Angeles.



Bachelor of Arts, Comparative Literature and Women’s Studies, 2006 University of California, Irvine.

Areas Of Specialization

Mobile ICT's
Infrastructure
Information Culture
History of Standards
Critical Data Studies
Archival Science
Science and Technology Studies

Recent Publications

Amelia Acker & Joan Donovan (2019) Data craft: a theory/methods package for critical internet studies, Information, Communication & Society, DOI: 10.1080/1369118X.2019.1645194

Amelia Acker and Dhiraj Murthy. 2018. Venmo: Understanding Mobile Payments as Social Media. In Proceedings of the 9th International Conference on Social Media and Society (SMSociety '18). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 5-12. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1145/3217804.3217892

Amelia Acker and Daniel Carter. 2018. Pocket Preppers: Performing Preparedness with Everyday Carry Posts on Instagram. In Proceedings of the 9th International Conference on Social Media and Society (SMSociety '18). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 207-211. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1145/3217804.3217913

Chi Y., Jeng W., Acker A., Bowler L. (2018) Affective, Behavioral, and Cognitive Aspects of Teen Perspectives on Personal Data in Social Media: A Model of Youth Data Literacy. In: Chowdhury G., McLeod J., Gillet V., Willett P. (eds) Transforming Digital Worlds. iConference 2018. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol 10766. Springer, Cham

Mayernik, M. S. and Acker, A. (2018), Tracing the traces: The critical role of metadata within networked communications. Journal of the Association for Information Science and Technology, 69: 177-180. doi:10.1002/asi.23927

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Courses

YearSemesterCourse NumberCourse
2020FallINF 380EPerspectives on Information
2020SpringINF 380EPerspectives on Information
2019FallINF 384MTopics In Description and Metadata Theories and Applications of Metadata
2019FallINF 385TSpecial Topics in Information Science Critical Data Studies
2019SpringINF 384MTopics In Description and Metadata Theories and Applications of Metadata
2019SpringINF 380CInformation in Social and Cultural Context
2019SpringINF 384MTopics In Description and Metadata Theories and Applications of Metadata
2018FallINF 385TSpecial Topics in Information Science Introduction to Mobile Information and Communication Technologies
2018SpringINF 384MTopics In Description and Metadata Theories and Applications of Metadata
2018SpringINF 380CInformation in Social and Cultural Context
2017FallINF 384MTopics In Description and Metadata Literacy & Memory Technologies
2017FallINF 380CInformation in Social and Cultural Context
2017FallINF 385TSpecial Topics in Information Science Literacy and Memory Technologies
2017SpringINF 385TSpecial Topics in Information Science Literacy and Memory Technologies
2017SpringINF 384MTopics In Description and Metadata Theories and Applications of Metadata