Facetten der Debatte über das digitale Arbeiten
Herausforderungen für eine kritische Theorie des informationellen Kapitalismus
This article introduces the reader to the so called ‘digital labor debate’ in the context of the political economy of (new) media and (digital) communication. The political economy of social media is best qualified as surveillance-driven production of culture and as an interplay between distinct modes of production (commons based peer production and commodity production). The latter gives rise to the problem of how to understand the interplay between these modes. The article discusses contributions from different theoretical angels, such as the materialist theory of communication, the theory of cognitive capitalism, the theory of prosumption, and the theory of rent in the informational age. The discussion is organized by three topics: Does the use of social media qualify as work? Are users subsumed to capital control? Are users exploited? The article marks theoretical challenges for a critical theory of informational capitalism.