Archive for October, 2011

A change of scenery…

Sunday, October 23rd, 2011

Last week I got to work in country victoria for 3 x12hr days of intense research work. It was fun to have a trip away, and even better as I was working with some colleagues who are also friends. There were four of us and we stayed at one of of the team’s house which happened to be in country victoria, which meant I got to wake up to kangaroos, ducks and beautiful scenery outside my window every morning. Not to mention the smell of beautiful fresh baked bread made by my friend’s husband (who acted like our own personal butler cooking for us and even encouraging me to use his awesome massage chair!) 

We worked long days intensely, but had lots of laughs & got to watch the amazing sunset from the spa on the deck. The only downside was the chilly spring weather, which I have to admit my Qld acclimatized body didn’t cope too well with in the following week – I got sick 😦

The resident cat Hemmingway tried to keep me warm, and a walk in the sunshine to see the beautiful flowers brightened up each day.

We did get a lot of work done (as you can see by the pics), and this was a really fun way to work. We had 6 laptops for 4 people 🙂


I love my job because every week is different.  I love that my work comes in many guises.

On Friday night we visited some other colleagues / friends in Melbourne for an amazing home cooked dinner and by the end of the night it was hilarious as all 4 of us were sitting with our iPads playing words with friends against each other. I was introduced to this game during the week and now I’m hooked! So we got another recruit that night too. I guess it was similar to what I would have done as a youngster playing scrabble as a board game, but we have moved into a new era 🙂 fun, fun, fun, if not a little bit silly! 🙂

It was a really great week…


Introducing Ekta and her story – Be inspired!

Wednesday, October 19th, 2011

It is with pleasure that I announce the new tech girls story! Ekta is an advanced analytics consultant and a part time lecturer. Read all about her technology adventures here!

My first journal publication from my PhD! yay!

Friday, October 7th, 2011

When you are a researcher, you spend a lot of time writing up the method of how you did the research and the results of the research in academic articles. Many of these academic articles are published in journals and conferences. Journals have a higher prestige but conferences are fun because you get to travel. I have been publishing articles for about 10 years now. It’s kinda like doing an assignment, where you hand it in to your teacher and you get a grade. In the case of an academic article, you get an accept or reject and then comments on how to improve it (someone you don’t know writes these comments about your paper). Then if you are lucky, you get an accept and you have some revisions to make, which you do and then you send it back to the journal/conference. It is a constant thing that researchers do, and everyone is striving to get high-ranking journal articles (these help with getting jobs and promotions).

So I was very excited to get the news that my first journal article based on my PhD is now published! The link is here:

If you can’t read it, I have posted the abstract below. Basically the paper discusses how people become members of secret underground file sharing communities to share music. Totally illegal communities, but very interesting (this was the topic of my PhD research). If you want a copy of the paper, please email me at:

Purpose – This paper aims to investigate the rules and rituals for joining and operating within underground music file sharing communities as well as the members’ motivations for joining.

Design/methodology/approach – Actor-network theory is combined with an ethnographic methodology to explore the structure, technology and rules of these communities from an actor-oriented, member perspective. Empirical data include in-depth interviews with three file sharers, and participant-observations for 120 days within an online community.

Findings – The paper provides an increased understanding of the structured and orderly nature of underground music file sharing communities and the perceived importance of strong rules and rituals for membership. Many communities use the same open-source software.

Research limitations/implications – Only a small number of file sharers (three) were interviewed. However they provide rich insights into this under-researched topic.

Practical implications – An understanding of these sophisticated underground file sharing communities assists the further development of legitimate online music systems to appeal to the large number of individuals involved in music file sharing communities.

Social implications – This paper provides an understanding of the practices within a subculture that is currently regarded as deviant and illegal, and contributes to the discussion and policy formulation on file sharing.

Originality/value – This study is the only known ethnography investigating underground music file sharing communities. These communities have not been systematically studied previously and the paper addresses this lack of research literature. This study is also novel as it applies actor-network theory to a context to which it has not previously been applied.

Another successful (but busy!) day at the office…

Wednesday, October 5th, 2011

Last week I got to work at the Gold Coast – Griffith University for 2 days which rounded out the end of a very full on month of training for me. I ran a software training workshop for doctoral students and staff. I had a really fun group with lots of tricky questions that kept me on my toes! By the end I was exhausted, but I had so much fun. I had a couple of really long days. I had to drive about an hour each way each day and I also had a journal paper revision to do so I was working at 5:30am one day, followed by graduation (my other students) that night. But I really enjoyed it as I learnt a lot. That may sound surprising but one of the reasons I love my job is that I am continuously learning new things from the people I teach. There is so much about research to know, and I am making the most of every opportunity to take it all in.

Here is a pic of me and my workshop participants. I’ve never had an organiser take a pic before in a workshop, but it added to the fun 🙂