The Third Place


The Third Place

"The third place" is a term used in the concept of community building to refer to social surroundings separate from the two usual social environments of home and the workplace. In his influential book "The Great Good Place", Ray Oldenburg (1989, 1991) argues that third places are important for civil society, democracy, civic engagement, and establishing feelings of a sense of place.

Oldenburg calls one's "first place" the home and those that one lives with. The "second place" is the workplace — where people may actually spend most of their time. Third places, then, are "anchors" of community life and facilitate and foster broader, more creative interaction. All societies already have informal meeting places; what is new in modern times is the intentionality of seeking them out as vital to current societal needs. Oldenburg suggests these hallmarks of a true "third place": free or inexpensive; food and drink, while not essential, are important; highly accessible: proximate for many (walking distance); involve regulars – those who habitually congregate there; welcoming and comfortable; both new friends and old should be found there. (58)

Michael Krassa argues along similar lines, looking at neighborhood design, social network formation, and civic involvement.

Telecommuters

An increasing percentage of American workers now telecommute, not from home, but from a third place. [ [http://www.usatoday.com/life/2006-10-04-third-space_x.htm Working out of a 'third place' - USATODAY.com ] ] Workers cite isolation when telecommuting from home and find working in public spaces a happy medium between the home office and the corporate office. Availability of public wifi has been a major enabler of this trend, and an increasing number of retail chains are catering to it.

----

Third Place as a new kind of space

In Culture Place and Society 'third space' is recognised as a new kind of 'place'. First Space is the environment we live in and have tangibly created. Second Space is the place that we 'want' to create, for example the plans we draw up for a new extension to the house. You can envisage the space but it isn't a 'reality'. When you build the extension the 'second space' becomes a 'first space'. A 'Third Space' is when you create an environment within a computer game such as 'second life'. You have an idea what you want that place to look like, you create it but it does not become a first space as it is not tangible. That new place is a 'third space'. Within a game like second life our 'etherial' bodies or 'avatars' live in this 'third space'.

Third Space has become a new kind of place...

----

Socialising

A traditional public house encourages social contact between patrons. But a third place which provides internet access may create a hollow effect in that the patrons are physically present but do not make social contact with each other, being absorbed by their remote connections. Some café owners are trying to ameliorate this effect by staging performance art such as live jazz and turning off the wi-fi to encourage audience engagement. [citation|url=http://www.economist.com/specialreports/displaystory.cfm?story_id=10950463|title=The new oases|date=April 10th 2008|publisher=The Economist]

Use in advertising

tarbucks

Starbucks uses the term "the third place" in its marketing because it vies to be the "extra place" people frequent after home and work. This idea came from a marketing concept by Howard Schultz. In an attempt to make Starbucks a "home away from home", the café section of the store is often outfitted with comfortable chairs, as well as the usual tables and hard-backed chairs found in cafés. Free electricity outlets are provided for patrons, and many branches also have wireless internet access, provided on a charge basis by T-Mobile and AT&T. Many larger retail stores also host "mini-concerts" for local musicians.

PlayStation 2

PlayStation 2 also advertised itself as "the third place" in Europe. The exact meaning of this phrase in this context was left unstated, to add to the air of mystery surrounding the product launch, which was accompanied by a David Lynch-directed commercial with surreal, dream-like visuals. [ [http://uk.ps2.ign.com/articles/099/099423p1.html IGN: Welcome Back To The Third Place ] ] A pejorative alternative meaning – that the console would be in third place in the three-horse "console war" against the Xbox and GameCube – did not escape the notice of videogame journalists.Fact|date=June 2008

ee also

*Urban sociology

References

Further reading

*cite book | author=Oldenburg, Ray | title=The Great Good Place: Cafes, Coffee Shops, Community Centers, Beauty Parlors, General Stores, Bars, Hangouts, and How They Get You Through the Day | location=New York | publisher=Paragon House | year=1989 | id=ISBN 978-1557781109 [Hardback]
*cite book | author=Oldenburg, Ray | title=The Great Good Place | location=New York | publisher=Marlowe & Company | year=1991 | id=ISBN 978-1569246818 [Paperback]
*cite book | author=Oldenburg, Ray | title=Celebrating the Third Place: Inspiring Stories about the "Great Good Places" at the Heart of Our Communities | location=New York | publisher=Marlowe & Company | year=2000 | id=ISBN 978-1569246122


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Celebrating the Third Place — subtitled: Inspiring Stories About the The Great Good Places at the Heart of Our Communities , is a book by Ray Oldenburg. The book is a collage of 19 essays which tell stories of active third places in the heart of communities.Notes(New York: M …   Wikipedia

  • in the third place — See: IN THE PLACE …   Dictionary of American idioms

  • in the third place — See: IN THE PLACE …   Dictionary of American idioms

  • The Right Place — Infobox Album Name = The Right Place Type = studio Artist = Bryan White Released = Start date|1997|09|23 Recorded = Genre = Country Length = 37:46 Label = Asylum Producer = Kyle Lehning Billy Joe Walker, Jr. Reviews = *Allmusic – rating|3|5 [http …   Wikipedia

  • Third place playoff — The third place playoff (sometimes called the bronze medal game or consolation game) is a single match that is included in many sporting knockout tournaments to decide which competitor or team will be credited with finishing third and fourth. The …   Wikipedia

  • The Third Magic — (ISBN 0 88899 126 6) is a fantasy book written by Welwyn Wilton Katz and published by Groundwood Books in 1988. It was for this work that Katz received the Governor General s Literary Award. It is a standalone book 215 pages in length and… …   Wikipedia

  • The Third Age — may refer to:* University of the Third Age, a UK based international organization * Third Age Foundation, a Santa Barbara based non profit organization * Third Age, a period of time in J. R. R. Tolkien s legendarium during which the events of The …   Wikipedia

  • The Third Wave — was an experimental demonstration of nazism movement [http://www.cubberleycatamount.com/Content/66 67/Catamount%20Pages/V11No14/ The Catamount, Vol 11., No 14., page 3] ] [http://www.ronjoneswriter.com/wave.html Article with participants… …   Wikipedia

  • The Third Wave of Democratization — The Third Wave: Democratization in the Late Twentieth Century is a 1991 book by Samuel P. Huntington which outlines the significance of a third wave of democratization to describe the global trend that has seen more than 60 countries experience… …   Wikipedia

  • The Third Twin — is a suspense thriller authored by the British writer Ken Follett and published by Random House publications in 1996. A New York Times bestseller, the book deals genetic engineering and the Nature vs. Nurture debate through the subject of… …   Wikipedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.