Call for papers: Social Media and Platform Work: Stories, Practices and Workers’ Organisation

Deadline for Abstract Submissions: 15th March 2022

Deadline for Full Papers: 15th August 2022

Expected date of publication: April 2023

This special issue aims to deepen the understanding of the ways platform workers engage with social media.

During the last decade, social media have been instrumental within platform work because they are fundamental to this type of labour. Platform workers’ use of social media can be considered forms of communication, socialisation and organisation. Through WhatsApp, Telegram, Instagram, YouTube, TikTok and other channels, workers can share tips, stories, and practices. Therefore, it is crucial to develop new understandings of the different uses, discourses, practices and stories that emerge when platform work intersects with social media. Furthermore, platform workers can use social media to bring to the fore different forms of exploitation, discrimination, and inequalities around platform power, and also in relation to consumers of the platform services. Thus, it has clearly become necessary to interrogate the ways in which platform work is reinforcing pre-existing inequalities in the areas of gender, class, sexual orientation, and country of origin, among others, as well as to understand the role that social media play to mitigate or increase these inequalities.

Beyond questioning inequalities associated with platform work expressed in social media, it is also important to explore the ways social media platforms can be key spaces for workers to collaborate, socialize, and learn informally about this type of labour. Workers share stories on social media about their work routine and everyday practices. Social media can also be a place for work self-promotion and the emergence of workers acting as influencers and coaches. Hence, it is important to raise questions about the centrality that social media has for workers’ organizations, strikes, fissures among the collective, or other forms of emerging solidarities.

We invite researchers to send proposals focused on different theoretical and empirical frameworks on the use of social media among platform workers. We strongly encourage contributions from scholars of the Global South, and from different academic fields. This may include (but is not limited to) the following topics:

  • Platform work and social media influencers;
  • Social media uses for platform work;
  • Discourses about platform work within social media communities and
  • Digital workers’ solidarity and organisation through social media;
  • Social media and platform worker’s informal learning;
  • The use of humorous content to discuss platform work on social media;
  • The use of social media for discussing the precariousness of
    platform work;
  • The use of social media for denouncing inequalities in platform work
    (gender, immigration; social class and other intersecting aspects);
  • Platform workers’ reputation on social media;
  • Worker’s self-representation in social media platforms;
  • Social media and theborders and limits of the workspace in a
    platformisation context.

Potential contributors should submit a 500-word abstract (excluding references), a 100-word bio, and the contact information of the corresponding author to the guest editors: Júlia Vilasís Pamos ((julia.vilasis /at/ ); Fernanda Pires ((fernanda.pires /at/ ); Willian Fernandes Araújo ((waraujo /at/ ); Rafael Grohmann ((rafaelgrohmann /at/ ). Feel free to consult the special issue editors about your article ideas and potential angles or approaches. After the abstracts have been selected, authors will be invited to submit a full paper. Please note that acceptance of an abstract does not guarantee publication, given that all papers will go through the journal’s peer review process.

Important note: no payment from the authors will be required.