Published by Arnold (UK) and Oxford University Press (USA), January 2004

Order from (UK: £14.99 and free delivery), (UK/Europe: £14.99 + delivery), or in the US from ($19.99 + delivery) ... or from your favourite bookstore.

"Excellent ... absorbing ... admirable"

The first review of the new book has been published at Hero, the official site for academic research and higher education in the UK. Read review here.

About the book

The World Wide Web is the defining medium of the 21st Century, enabling people across the world to share information, build communities, and express their individuality in ways that defy its origins in a tangle of telephone lines and computer codes. Bringing together the work of scholars, experts and established online authors, this comprehensive book offers an analysis of both contemporary Web-based culture and arts, and the impact of the Web on international economics, politics and law.

The second edition of Web.Studies combines fully revised versions of its predecessor's most useful chapters with completely new and original work on the latest developments and controversies in cyberspace. Beginning with an introduction to the Web and how it works, the book outlines the theories and methodology of cyberculture studies, before moving on to explore aspects of everyday life online, art and commerce, global communities and the politics of internet access and activism. Readers will also find suggestions for ways in which the Web can be used to further their own research, as well as lists of useful websites, a full glossary and a bibliography.


Introduction to the second edition (NEW!)
An all-new chapter of 8,700 words by David Gauntlett

Introduction to the first edition
The original chapter by David Gauntlett

Internet studies: What went wrong?
Article from The Times Higher Education Supplement, when the first edition was published



  • Web Studies: What's new by David Gauntlett
  • Internet studies in the 21st century by Laura Gurak
  • Developing methodological frameworks for studying the World Wide Web by Nina Wakeford


  • At Home on the Web: Personal Webspace and Identity by Charles Cheung
  • Masculinities on the Web by Ross Horsley
  • Everybody's Gotta Love Somebody, Sometime: Online Fan Community by Kirsten Pullen
  • Web Grrrls, Guerilla Tactics: Young Feminisms on the Web by Jayne Armstrong
  • Movie-making in the New Media Age by Graham Roberts
  • 'Doing it' on the web: Emerging discourses on internet sex by Jodi O'Brien & Eve Shapiro
  • Art in Cyberspace: The digital aesthetic by Mark Andrejevic
  • Pornography online, lesbian style by Meredith Balderston
  • Help Yourself: The World Wide Web as a self-help agora by Shani Orgad
  • Fascination and Hospitality: Issues and implications of internet interactions by Christopher R. Smit


  • Stitching the web into global capitalism: Two stories by Vincent Miller
  • The Digital Divide by Nick Couldry
  • Copyright in Cyberspace: Protecting intellectual property online by Kathleen K. Olson
  • The Music Industry versus the Internet: Napster and other cyber music wars by Ian Dobie


  • The Internet and Democracy by Steve Lax
  • The World Wide Web Goes to War: from Kosovo to the 'war' against terrorism by Philip M. Taylor
  • World Wide Women and the Web by Wendy Harcourt
  • Continuity within Change: The cherokee indians and the internet by Darcy Plymire & Ellen Arnold
  • Virus Writers: Subculture and the Electronic Meaning of Style by Douglas Thomas
  • Digital Media Futures by Richard Berger


"Web.Studies sets the agenda for a new period of media research, one that gets to grips with the significance of new communications technologies and the global spaces in which they are so rapidly developing. I believe that this book will help considerably to take media studies in new directions." - Prof. Kevin Robins, Goldsmiths College, University of London.

"Like the Web itself, Web.Studies is by turns stimulating, informative, and provocative. It provides a useful and diverse collection of resources that will help us to understand the Web as a social and cultural medium, not just as a form of "information technology"." - Prof. David Buckingham, Institute of Education, University of London.

"Web.Studies is another welcome addition to the growing collection of key texts for students of new media. It is a thoughtful and well-balanced general overview of the subject that will be required reading on many undergraduate courses... A highly effective collection of papers... Gauntlett certainly sets up an exciting vision of web studies as the most fruitful area for media theorists." - Peter Dean in Convergence, vol. 8, no. 1 (2002), pp. 119-22.

"The editor has done an excellent job of selecting essays that fit together logically and thematically... The result is a variety of fresh, interconnected perspectives that do not belabour any particular point or idea... Web.Studies is an excellent reference for researchers and graduate students and an ideal text for undergraduate classes that examine online media" - Kirk St. Amant in IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication, vol. 44, no. 4 (2001), pp. 304-5.

"Gauntlett’s collection should convince even the most skeptical that almost all social phenomena will have seeped onto the web in some way, and may well have been transformed in the process. As I read Gauntlett’s book, I became even more convinced than previously of the need to look across, if not do away with altogether, the boundary between media studies and sociology... I certainly intend to use [Web.Studies] to introduce sociology and communications students to the wide range of research topics the internet offers... [The book] contains much to stimulate a sociological imagination." -- Christine Hine in Sociology, vol. 36, no. 3 (August 2002), pp. 776-778.

"In Web.Studies, Gauntlett and the chapter authors have successfully provided a resource of scholarly discussions about Web cultures that take into consideration the broad range of social, economic, and political interactions that take place on the Web. Each of the three major sections of Web.Studies offers a unique and inclusive approach to the study of cyberculture." - Ryan Burns, Department of Communication, University of Oklahoma.

"In his book Web Studies... editor David Gauntlett sets out an interesting review of media studies and the Web, from both a sociological and cultural studies perspective. ... Web studies is excellent for both humanities students who are interested in aspects of the Web but are unsure where to start and for those who wish to discover what the Web has to offer. David Gauntlett has given us a comprehensive look at several areas of the Web. He also offers us a unique insight of the experiences that he and the other contributors have had with online communities, Web site design, and other aspects of the Internet... Web Studies is, overall, a most enjoyable read." - Cesar Basanta, Bath Spa University College.

"This book is a 'killer site'. Overall, this book does a number of things very well and it does them at a time when there is a dearth of quality writing in this area. Web.Studies brings the best of the Web's tendency toward the succinct and informative and binds it in an affordable and useable format. It would make an excellent textbook for undergraduate media studies and could serve as an entry point for the digitally dubious members of the real world." - Patrick Finn, University of Victoria.

"There are many web studies / theory texts developed for graduate students and professionals, but this is the only one that is approachable for undergraduates." - Cindy Wambeam, Washington State University (2002).

"I have used Web.Studies in my teaching for four different semesters, and I really like the book and its topics." - Barbara Harbach, University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point (2002).

ISBN 0-340-81472-1
Distributed in the USA by Oxford University Press Inc., New York


David Gauntlett is Professor of Media and Communications at University of Westminster, UK. He is the author of the books Moving Experiences (John Libbey, 1995), Video Critical (John Libbey, 1997), TV Living (with Annette Hill, Routledge, 1999), Media, Gender and Identity: An Introduction (Routledge, 2002), and edited the first edition of this book. He produces the website For more information on these books and projects see

Ross Horsley is a PhD candidate at the University of Leeds, UK, researching men's lifestyle magazines and the construction of male identity. He teaches Web design and HTML, and runs seminars in sociological theory for undergraduate students.