Hello! I am Dr. Julia DeCook (PhD) and I am currently an Assistant Professor of Advocacy and Social Change in the School of Communication at Loyola University Chicago. My main research areas are platform governance, online hate groups, gender and race, social justice and technology, and knowledge production.
Broadly speaking, I examine how online hate groups maintain and sustain their communities by navigating the constraints and affordances of digital infrastructure. Simply put, I observe how these communities respond to things like platform censorship, deplatforming, and bans to understand how they manage to persist despite attempts to thwart them, and what we can learn about platform governance as a result.
In my work, I use qualitative, critical, and some computational methods, particularly focusing on online ethnography and discourse analysis. To frame my research, I use theories and approaches from anthropology, feminist and critical race studies, cultural studies, STS, communication, and social movement studies.
At Loyola, I teach courses on communication and social change, critical media theory, and media, politics, and propaganda. Along with these courses, I have also taught courses like designing for digital environments and social media & society.
Welcome to my website!