How consumer-initiated platforms shape family and consumption

Lydia Ottlewski, Joonas Rokka, John Schouten

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review


Research has recently highlighted processes of platformization through which consumer activities are shaped by socio-technical features of digital environments. Prior theorizations have focused on corporate-initiated platform dynamics and affordances, emphasizing either the managerial facets of platformization or how consumers use and interact with these platforms. Our interpretive research on offers a contrasting case and theorizes how ordinary consumers, thwarted by social and legal constraints in their desires to create families, leverage platformization for family creation and consumption. Our findings conceptualize consumer-initiated platforms and show how their key affordances—embeddedness, privacy, modularization, and scaling—shape one of the most sacred spheres of life, the institution of family. Our study contributes by theorizing how consumer-initiated platform affordances differ from dominant corporate-initiated ones and why the differences matter. We discuss how they can help consumers to find solutions to acute consumption problems and to reimagine dominant cultural institutions.
TidsskriftMarketing Theory
Udgave nummer1
Sider (fra-til)123-151
StatusUdgivet - mar. 2024


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