Help Privacy Policy Disclaimer
  Advanced SearchBrowse




Journal Article

Networking down: Networks, innovation, and relational labor in digital book publishing


Ready,  Elspeth       
Department of Human Behavior Ecology and Culture, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Max Planck Society;

External Resource
No external resources are shared
Fulltext (restricted access)
There are currently no full texts shared for your IP range.
Fulltext (public)
There are no public fulltexts stored in PuRe
Supplementary Material (public)
There is no public supplementary material available

Larson, C., & Ready, E. (2022). Networking down: Networks, innovation, and relational labor in digital book publishing. New Media & Society. doi:10.1177/14614448221090195.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-000A-8F50-B
While management and network scholars have long asked why some groups adapt to innovation more readily than others, such questions have been surprisingly absent in studies of new media production. We offer a network analytical framework which relates producers? informal networks to their capacity to adopt digital innovations. Through a network ethnography of 4264 romance writers, we find that established authors who reversed traditional advice patterns, by seeking advice from inexperienced newcomers rather than experienced peers, were more likely to adopt digital self-publishing. By linking the concept of relational labor to network structures, we demonstrate the value of ?networking down? in a digitally disrupted cultural industry?a surprising finding in a business where networking up, to powerful actors, has seemed critical for success. We argue that strategic relational labor by established content creators facilitates adaptation to digital conditions and provides some measure of protection against precarity in a changing landscape.