Melissa Whitaker “From ‘Love Actually’ to ‘Love Aptually’: An Investigation Into The Impact of New Social Media Technology on Gender and Sexual Scripts”

In Students by Debbie Curtis

My PhD project, supervised by Diane Richardson and Gethin Rees, seeks to respond to an emerging trend in society; mobile dating applications. Despite the proliferation of mobile dating applications, it is only recently that literature has started to address mobile dating applications as a distinct social phenomenon. This project is interested in building on this emerging body of literature. Through drawing on Sexual Script Theory and science and technology studies, this project aims to explore the multi-layered ways in which mobile dating applications are influencing social actors negotiation of gender and sexual scripts. Semi-structured interviews conducted with both men and women, who are active users of the mobile dating app Tinder, aim to gain insight into the ways users interact with mobile dating applications to reconstruct gender and sexual scripts.

During my undergraduate degree the sociology department at university of York awarded me with ‘most outstanding dissertation award’. I was also an intern for Dr Merran Toerien who was involved in a research project into students experiences of widening participation at York University.