Tim Guest: Second Lives
A fascinating collection of stories of the author visiting people who really live in Second Life and other virtual worlds. The book avoids technical how-to or talk evangelical hallelujah gospel. Instead, it gives a balanced view of both the amazing potential and dangerous pitffals of virtual worlds.
Steve Davis, Larry Elin, and Grant Reeher: Click on Democracy: The Internet's Power to Change Political Apathy into Civic Action
A fascinating account of how virtual political communities formed around the 2000 US presidential elections. This book is especially interesting because its case analysis shows that, contrary to common belief, adversarial communities can indeed emerge on the Internet, communities in which stakeholders with different interests engage in respectful discourse to see to what extent they can overcome or at least understand their partisan differences.
Marleen Huysman, Etienne Wenger, and Volker Wulf (eds.): Communities and Technologies: Proceedings of the First International Conference on Communities and Technologies C & T 2003
Gives an overview of state-of-the-art research on virtual communities.
Mark Surman: Commonspace: Beyond Virtual Community
A great book on how commonspace, the power of the digital collective, can be realized through virtual communities. Gives detailed analyses of cases and tools.
- Esther Dyson: Release 2.0
A view of how the decentralization brought about by the Internet changes everything: communities, business models, governance and much more.
Tom Standage: The Victorian Internet: The Remarkable Story of the Telegraph and the Nineteenth Century's On-Line Pioneers
Make a very clear case the Internet is basically a deja-vu: the telegraph may have even had a larger societal impact!
Frances Cairncross: The Death of Distance: How the Communications Revolution Will Change Our Lives
Lays out the deep societal impact the new communication technologies are going to have.
- Teresa M. Harrison: Computer Networking and Scholarly Communication in Twenty-First-Century University (Suny Series in Computer-Mediated Communication)
Compendium of articles that provide many interesting insights into the peculiarities of online research communities.
Annette Markham: Life Online: Researching Real Experience in Virtual Space (Ethnographic Alternatives , No 6)
Takes the reader on a fascinating personal research journey, while clearly describing the hardships and triumphs one can experience when researching life online.
Starr Roxanne Hiltz: Network Nation - Revised Edition: Human Communication via Computer
Groundbreaking and thorough work on electronic network research, dating all the way back to the 1970s. Still very relevant to the modern-day researcher.
- Howard Rheingold: The Virtual Community: Surfing the Internet
The classic book that takes the reader on a fascinating journey through the virtual communities of the early 1990s. Still a must-read.
Jennifer Preece: Online Communities: Designing Usability and Supporting Sociability
Offers a balanced combination of theory and practice on virtual community construction.