Talkings (updated)

Following the Association of Internet Researchers conference in Copenhagen later this week (which I’m very excited about!), I’ll be spending a few days in the UK and I’m giving a couple of talks there.

The first is at City University, where the CCI has established a ‘node’. QUT colleague John Banks and I will be kicking off their Creative Industries Policy and Research seminar series with a two-handed presentation based on our recent work on YouTube and the games industry respectively:

Navigating Expertise

Across the new media landscape, both the pessimists and the optimists recognise a blurring of the professional-amateur divide, and the increasingly interdependent relationships between ‘producers’ – whether of media ‘content’, experiences, or new technologies – and users. Among the most frequently discussed examples of online co-creation are the Wikipedia (a significant site of collective knowledge production), YouTube (where the production and consumption of broadcast, user-created and remixed video content converge within a more or less ‘flat’ common architecture), and Massively Multiplayer Online Games (where gamers are collectively undertaking work that was formerly undertaken only by professional designers and developers). Beyond the specificities of these examples, the shifts that they represent have broader implications for the way we understand knowledge, innovation and agency.

This seminar explores the ways that knowledge and value is produced, contested and mobilised in new media contexts, working through two case studies (the games industry and the YouTube community). Banks and Burgess consider how the ‘problem’ of expertise is playing out in each case.

Date: Wednesday 22 October
Time: 15.00-16.00
Room: AG03
RSVP to lucy.montgomery@qut.edu.au

Following that I’m heading back up to the Oxford Internet Institute not only to indulge in some nostalgia for the Summer Doctoral Program, but also to give a talk about the study of YouTube Joshua Green and I completed earlier this year:

Making Sense of YouTube

Monday 20 October 2008 16:30 – 17:30 Tuesday 21 October 2008 16:30 – 17:30

Location: Oxford Internet Institute, 1 St Giles, Oxford, OX1 3JS. This event is open to the public. If you would like to attend please email your name and affiliation, if any, to: events@oii.ox.ac.uk

This presentation reports on a recent study of YouTube that relied principally on a survey of 4300 of the most ‘popular’ videos, which were categorised according to criteria derived from media and cultural studies approaches to the analysis of media genres and practices.

The analysis produced new knowledge about the extent of particular uses of the platform (such as vlogging, political commentary, or the ‘distribution’ of broadcast content); and the relationship between different modes of ‘audience’ engagement (commenting, responding, rating) and particular content genres.

The presentation builds on the findings of the study to discuss the co-existing and competing uses that are actually being made of YouTube – by the media industries, by audiences and amateur producers, and by particular communities of interest; as well as to consider the way that these practices challenge existing understandings of cultural ‘production’ and ‘consumption’, and their implications for the uncertain and competing futures of participatory culture online.

Also, the book out of that study, YouTube: Online Video and Participatory Culture, is now finally going into production at Polity Press (woo!), and should be out early next year. More very soon (including groovy cover art)…

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