You Can’t Beat Us

 

I would hope to think that in this day and age that misogyny shouldn’t be an issue AT ALL. Unfortunately it is and is evermore clear because of the Internet. Now I’m not putting all men in a box here saying that all are misogynists but from reading multiple articles and seeing forums where women express their opinions, especially in online activity and gaming, many are being “shut down” and abused. I believe it has something to do with the anonymity of the Internet. People are able to use an alias and hide behind their computer screen in the comfort of their own home. Another word for this is trolling and it is just simply wrong.

So, this leads to my question, why are women misrepresented in gaming culture? About 48% of all gamers are women (ESA 2014) and only 8.7% work in the gaming industry (Serrels 2013). Why is this? Anita Sarkeesian’s storyis a good example of why women may not want to work in the industry and has something to do with online trolling and misogynistic abuse. At first, I just thought if you wanted to work there than you would and why should a predominately male industry deter you from doing so. But in my lecture with Tanja Dreher (2014), it made me think about the underlying psychological reasons why, such as misogynistic behaviour, most likely not in the work place but hate that may be received online.

To bring awareness to this female online hate, a campaign was created on twitter with the hashtag “#mencallmethings”. It allowed female bloggers, columnists and Twitter users to publicly tell others of daily anonymous hate from others (Dreher 2014). I had never heard of these stories until my lecture and I have never seen them displayed on news channels. I would like to know if this is because possibly news programs are predominately run by men and feel threated by the rising power of women that they choose not to broadcast these stories on free-to-air TV programs.

 

Sources:

Serrels, M 2013, Only 8.7% Of Those Employed In Australian Digital Games Development Are Women, Kotaku, viewed on 15th May 2014, http://www.kotaku.com.au/2013/06/only-8-7-of-those-employed-in-australian-digital-games-development-are-women

Entertainment Software Association, 2014, viewed 15th May 2014, http://www.theesa.com/facts/gameplayer.asp

Dreher, T 2014, #mencallmethings: identity and difference online, Lecture, University of Wollongong

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Commit Don’t Just Click

“Australian youth’s main focus’ on activism are generally to do with environmental causes, animal rights, anti capitalist protests, anti racial demonstrations and anti war marches. Young people are attracted to the hope and promise of building a new future” (2005).

Due to our politics, it is hard for us youth to get involved in such protests. Our age is the one factors that disables us from being taken seriously. To overcome this, we protest through social media. We use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc. to get our message across and to spread word. My only concern with this is that do young people actually really care? Has the ease of hash tagging, sharing and “liking” made charity disposable? Living in an individualist society (2014), it makes me wonder whether people actually commit to such protests. For example, Kony 2012, remember that? Remember the buzz? I will give credit to social media on its ability to bring awareness and attention to a political situation but how many people in Australia got involved physically? I recall seeing one Kony sticker around a whole 3 suburbs. I’m not singling out every young person in Australia as I know there are many that do get involved and I know many that regularly attend protests about Refugee’s.

The term coined for social media activism is “clicktivism” although some like to call it “slacktivism”.”When the small act of token support is very public in nature, people can kind of signal to others that they have already helped the cause they actually arent more likey to help later ” says Kate White from the University of British Columbia (2013). What does social media do for protests other than raise awareness? If you want to make a difference, get involved, commit to the cause, donate. By just liking or sharing something isn’t going to contribute physically in making anything better.

Sources:

Sherrod, L 2005, Youth Activism: An International Encyclopedia, Greenwood Publishing Group

Khorana, S 2014, We Are The 99%, Lecture, University of Wollongong

White, K 2013, Clicktivism: Why social media is not good for charity, SBS, viewed 9th May 2014, http://www.sbs.com.au/news/article/2013/11/18/clicktivism-why-social-media-not-good-charity

Sounds Familiar

 

You would most likely say that music and movie remixes are the general feature and foundation of remixing. Although, remixes do not have to specifically rely on technology. We create, learn and assemble products not just music, for example it could be the recycling or remixing of 80’s clothing worn now with a slight twist (Moore 2014). Some may argue that a lack of creativeness may be the cause of the DJ but personally I think it’s a great way of sharing and creating something relatively new out of something pre-loved.

One of the main concepts on remix culture is produsage (Bruns 2010). Anyone these days has access to movie making and music mixing programs such as iMovie and Audacity. It is evermore easy to upload tracks to the Internet for people to download or listen to on websites such as Soundcloud. But by no means does this stop at music, it can continue on to journalism with open source websites such as Wikipedia (Bruns 2010). The Internet, changing technology and the ability to download is what makes remixing so popular and easy. Some remixes and mash-ups even make their way to the Top 40 iTunes charts like the recent (and may I add horrid) remix of Savages “Swing” by Joel Fletcher (2013). One other thing is when artists take other artists songs and remake it and don’t credit them for example Beyonce. Don’t get me wrong, I am a major Beyonce fan and anything she does or says is amazing but her song “Run The World (Girls)”(2011) was a major rip off of Major Lazers song “Pon De Floor”(2009). She didn’t even recognise Major Lazer as a featured artist on the track. Diplo (the creator of the beat) is recognised in the credits of the track, Major Lazer are not directly recognised when the song is aired on radio or music video channels. So, where do we draw the line at music copyright. Although in this case it was legal, to what extent should an original track be credited copyrighted or not?

Sources:

Bruns, Axel (2010), ‘Distributed creativity : filesharing and produsage’, In Sonvilla-Weiss, Stefan (Ed.) Mashup cultures. Springer, Wien, pp. 24-37.

Moore, C 2014, Remix Culture, Tutorial, University of Wollongong, 30th April

Fletcher, J, Savage 2013, ‘Swing’, Swing-Single, Hussle Recordings

Diplo, 2009, ‘Pon De Floor’, Guns Don’t Kill People… Lazers Do (CD), Downtown Music

Knowles, B 2011, ‘Who Run the World (Girls)’, 4 (CD), Sony Music Entertainment

Changing Transmedia

 

Henry Jenkins’ (2007) definition of transmedia is “a process where integral elements of a fiction get dispersed systematically across multiple delivery channels for the purpose of creating a unified and coordinated entertainment experience”, for example Star Wars. The first Star Wars filmed was released in 1977 and was a major success. Many companies wanted to cash in on this major success and that’s where transmedia was born (Hamilton 2013). It started with the movies then went on to comics, book, radio channels, TV shows and video games. The thing that makes the Star Wars franchise so brilliant is that it all ties in together, every world is set the same and stories connected. It took what is called the canonical approach (Hamilton 2013).

Jenkins has 10 steps to define a transmedia products. These include:

1. That it is dispersed

2. Has synergy

3. Is world building

4. Has extensions

5. Has different entry points

6. Makes a unique contribution to story

7. Makes sense and has co-ordination across media sectors

8. Has collective intelligence

9. Provides roles and goals

10. Has gaps which give extra details or hints which make viewers keep interested and to speculate

 

Although, one flaw with Jenkins steps made in 2007 to define a transmedia product needs to be updated as we now have ever changing technology and participatory technology. So the question is should prosumers and produsage be added to the definition of transmedia? I think yes.

Instagram is becoming a great home for transmedia texts for example the hashtag is a great use of collecting and housing one story across multiple different platforms such as Twitter and Facebook. The Planking phenomenon is a classic example of the power of the hashtag in a transmedia experience. The hashtag separates all other stories only leaving you with what you want to see, in this case Planking. It could be seen across Twitter and Facebook and even mades its way on to the News. People demand to be involved (Moore 2014) and it is ever so easy these days that I think Jenkins needs to update his definitions.

Sources:

Jenkins, H 2007, Transmedia Storytelling 101, Confessions of an Aca-Fan- The Official Weblog of Henry Jenkins, 22nd March, weblog post, viewed on 18th April 2014, http://henryjenkins.org/2007/03/transmedia_storytelling_101.html

Hamilton, J 2013, The Dawn of Modern Transmedia Storytelling: Star Wars, Jason Hamilton’s Blog, weblog post, 24th April, viewed on 18th April 2014, http://storyhobby.com/node/283

Moore, C 2014, Transmedia Narratives, Tutorial, University of Wollongong, 16th April

Producer Users

“The collaborative and continuous building and extending of existing content in pursuit of further improvement” (Bruns 2007)

So that is a basic definition of the term ‘produsage’. I thought I would start off with that quote so you could all follow where I’m about to go with this blog post. Produsage has 4 key characteristics listed by Bruns (2007). They include:

1. A shift from individuals and teams as producers to a broader based, distributed generation of content by a wide community of participants

2. Fluid movement of produsers between roles as leaders, participants and users of content and can either be professional or amateur

3. Unfinished and continuously under development

4. Based on merit more than ownership-  frequently employ copyright which prohibit unauthorised commercial use but enable collaboration on further content improvement

Bruns (2007) describes that originally products are controlled by producers and distributors and not by consumers. However this is not the case anymore in produsage environments. Consumers are no longer passive but consistently participate and are active in the development and updates of products.

Instagram shows themes particularly of an unfinished characteristic in Bruns terms. Instagram is a never-ending product as it allows endless ‘comments’ and ‘likes’. “Regramming” is also a frequent term now used on the social platform site. It describes the re-posting of images almost like “re-tweeting”, it is endless. The disposable nature of photographs these days also allows you to easily edit photos using other apps and then post the edited photo on Instagram.

You could also tie Instagram in with two of Bruns other characteristics. They are that the app allows for fluid movement and that it is permissive. We are producers and users of the app. We participate in communication and we use the app by sharing photos. Most users of Instagram are amateurs in terms of technology but the professionals are the ones that can update the app and have access to programming but they most likely use the app too. Instagram does not use the app but Instagram uses us. Instagram obtains information on our activity to develop the features that we want in it for example direct messaging which means we do not have to change between text messaging or Facebook IM but can be on the one app the whole time.

Sources:

 

Bruns, Axel (2007) Produsage: Towards a Broader Framework for User-Led Content Creation. In Proceedings Creativity & Cognition 6, Washington, DC.

 

We Create What We Want To See

The users and sharers of Instagram are also Instagram’s audience. Instagram is a prosumer content social platform (Moore 2014). We produce what we consume, we make and share what we want to see. We are in control of who we follow and unfollow and what we like or block. Instagram has just hit 200 million active users (Instagram 2014). While this number may seem a lot, in the scheme of things it is quite small. Facebook still reigns No. 1 in the top social networking sites with 1.31 billion active monthly users (Statistic Brain 2014) whilst Instagram is ranked No. 6 according to GlobalWeb Index (2014) and is the fastest rising social network with a 23% increase in the last 6 months (Lunden 2014). This rising number of users only means an increasing awareness of events happening around the world. The ability to snap and share heightens our access to information quicker than ever before whether it be seeing what your friend is doing on the weekend or images from news disasters around the world.

Image
GlobalWeb Index 2013

An interesting yet predictable web article I found detailed that the majority of Instagram’s users were between the ages of 18 and 35 (Kerr 2012). Duh! While I believe this is true, I think older generations aren’t use to technology quite yet and maybe in a few years they all will have moved from Facebook to Instagram. My mum is trying to keep up with whats new in technology and is the only one of her friends to own an Instagram account and she is 47 years old, certainly out of the age range of average users. I think this means that Instagram will only increase in users and activity.

Sources:

Moore, C 2014, Trajectories of Convergence, Lecture, University of Wollongong, 11th March 2014.

Instagram 2014, Instagram Today: 200 Million Strong, Instagram Blog, weblog post, 27th March, viewed on 3rd April 2014, http://blog.instagram.com/post/80721172292/200m

Statistic Brain 2014, Facebook Statistics, Statistic Brain, viewed on 3rd April 2014, http://www.statisticbrain.com/facebook-statistics/

GlobalWeb Index Q4 2013, cat. no. not found, Global Web Index

Lunden, I 2014, Instagram Is The Fastest-Growing Social Site Globally, Mobile Devices Rule Over PCs For Access, Tech Crunch, viewed on 3rd April 2014, http://techcrunch.com/2014/01/21/instagram-is-the-fastest-growing-social-site-globally-mobile-devices-rule-over-pcs-for-social-access/

Kerr, D 2012, Instagram users are young and Facebook users are old, C Net, viewed on 3rd April 2014, http://www.cnet.com/news/instagram-users-are-young-and-facebook-users-are-old/

Keeping Up With The Kardashians… Oops I Mean Society

epic selfie via @raskalov
epic selfie via @raskalov

Honestly, I don’t think Instagram will be around in 10 years. Think about it, Myspace was short lived and Facebook use is declining. It’s a trend already in social platforms short lifespan. These platforms short lifespans almost reflect the attitudes of society today. People want new new new!!! That dress I bought last week, I’m already over that and want something different already. C’mon it’s the 21st Century and people are acting surprised about short lived phenomena, I mean we are the Why Not (Now) Generation.

Henry Jenkins (2004) talks about major trends and changes in technology, and since that was written in 2004, we can discover how in 10 years technology has changed. It is interesting to think what another 10 years will do to technology. He talks about what we will do with technology content, the change from analog to digital and its affects on cost, higher ownership rates, user generated content and new forms of community knowledge and habits. I think Instagram understands this concept of changing society. They understand that we are always on the move. The ability for us to snap and share is what makes this app so successful. The fast pace of society mean less time for everything basically, if only there were more hours in the day. Having less time means being in a sense less disconnected which Instagram too understands. It understands that we want to follow and unfollow who we please, comment on what we like and post what we like without taking a second thought. Check out VS model Cara Delevingne and her fearlessness towards IG posting. My ideologies about Instagram though may be different to say someone thats older a.k.a my dad. Older generations seem to not understand the impact that social media has on society. It changes the way we live. TV programs such as The Block (2003) use Twitter and Instagram. It’s a way of exposing their brand and in a way keeping up with the times. With Instagram, news travels quick. You can find out what fashion will be in next season as soon as it’s seen on the runway all the way in Paris. I think it’s fascinating but I guess dad just doesn’t understand.

 

Sources:

Jenkin, H 2004, The Cultural Logic of Convergence, International Journal of Cultural Studies, Vol 7, p. 33-43

The Block 2003, television program, Nine Network, Australia, 1st June 2003

Instagram Won’t Make You Rich

I had always been confused about what Copyright actually was. I think this is mainly because with the digital age that we live in, movies, images, music and games can be sent so easily through loopholes without getting caught. I still can’t fathom how we can download a copyrighted movie for free without getting caught. I don’t know anyone that has been caught illegally downloading things, I mean it should be easy right? Just find out what IP addresses have been downloading and voilà!

So, whilst I still find all the concepts of Copyright and The Creative Commons and licensing baffling I have tried to dig deep into the Terms and Conditions of Instagram (Instagram 2013). As I have a gathered, Instagram owns the right to do whatever they please with the content you post but will not claim the image as their own. Instagram also have no say in what Third-Party Properties do with your images… unless your profile is on private (Instagram 2013). If you are to dispute the use of your image by a third-party property, Instagram has claimed in their Terms and Conditions they have nothing to do with any legal issues if you wish to take the case further and if you are sued for posting someone else’s photo you must pay all of the fees (Instagram 2013). Crazy what we are signing into right?

I did come across on the magical inter-web that you can actually get a Creative Commons license for your Instagram account through i-am-cc.org (Harmon 2012). I did find out though that even if you own a Creative Commons License it doesn’t just totally disregard Instagram’s Terms of Conditions so people can still use your photos for whatever. By Instagram having an Open Content form of licensing it is amazing for avid sharers and music mixers but for those celebrities that own the app, they can’t make anymore money than they’ve already got (poor them) and for us, well if one of our photos makes it big time, we won’t become overnight millionaires. Dream on!

Image
source: Tyler, the Creators Instagram @feliciathegoat

Sources:

Instagram 2013, Terms of Use, Instagram, viewed 20th March 2014, http://instagram.com/legal/terms/

Instagram 2013, API Terms of Use, Instagram, viewed 20th March 2014, http://instagram.com/about/legal/terms/api/

Instagram 2013, Privacy Policy, Instagram, viewed 20th March 2014, http://instagram.com/legal/privacy/

Soltero, A 2012, 6 Things Everyone Should Know About Instagram, The Social U, Viewed 20th March 2014, http://thesocialu101.com/6-things-everyone-should-know-about-instagram/

Harmon, E 2012, Should Instagram Adopt CC Licensing, Creative Commons, viewed on 20th March 2014, file:///Users/maddygreig/Desktop/BCM112/ASSIGNMENT%201/Should%20Instagram%20Adopt%20CC%20Licensing%3F%20-%20Creative%20Commons.webarchive

I Know, I Saw It On Instagram

Growing up I remember the first time I was introduced to social media was probably in year 6 or 7 when I got Myspace. My addiction to social network basically started then. I loved editing my profile, looking up new music and constantly talking to people without running out of credit. Then I got Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, Instagram, Gifboom, Vine, Snapchat, Jump In and even tried to start my own blog. I have always wanted and craved for the latest gadget or the newest app (except game apps, never been addicted to gaming). Out of all of these social network platforms, I have found Instagram to be my favourite.

Twitter (2006) and Facebook (2004) were created several years before Instagram burst onto the scene in 2010. By this stage avid technology consumers like myself were waiting for the next big thing. It was something totally new that we hadn’t seen before. Uploading single images to tell a story was not what we were used to. We were used to lengthy boring status’ and a minute by minute account of what someones cat was doing (although I guess we have started do this now on Instagram). We had never even seen someones meal being posted on Twitter or Facebook either or their legs while they were tanning (legs or hotdogs?). A simple image could tell a thousand words with this app. Instead of a 300 image photo album we just got to see the best of the best and the great thing was was that having a 50 comment long conversation on Instagram was and still is social suicide (BIG NO NO).

It’s not just the content of Instagram that is revolutionary it is the fact that this single app is one of the most powerful marketing tools. The brand Michael Kors was recently one of the first brands to be advertised through Instagram. After the ad, the brand received a staggering 34,000 new followers in 18 hours, nearly 16 times their normal rate of followers (Taube 2013). Since the Instagram brand was bought by Mark Zuckerberg in 2012 I have feeling we will be seeing more and more ads appearing on our once ad-free app. Since Zuckerberg has owned Instagram, the app is constantly having Facebook characteristics added to it such as being able to tag people in the photo and instant messaging. The question is, will Instagram keep on changing into something consumers will not enjoy anymore or become too alike to previous social network sites?

Check out the rate of growing Instagram users

Image
Source: GlobalWebIndex Q4 2013

Sources:

Taube, A 2013, Michael Kors’ Widely Hated Instagram Ad Was Actually A Massive Success, Business Insider Australia, viewed on 15th March 2014, http://www.businessinsider.com.au/michael-kors-wins-with-first-instagram-ad-2013-11

WELCOME

Hi I’m Madeline, (now you get the blog name, Madeline Oh Madeline).

I have finished at Engadine High School last year and am now excited to start my journey through University. I am doing a Bachelor of Communication and Media studies majoring in marketing and advertising and I also currently intern at a modelling agency in Surry Hills so life is a bit full on.  I love everything and anything about fashion, knowing almost every model that ever walked the runway for FW and I love music, just don’t ask me my favourite genre because I  will not be able to tell you, unless you count Beyonce as a genre.  Do I really need to tell you more about my life?

After finding the HSC difficult  I’m very determined to get stuck into the Uni life and study and find at least some balance in my life. Im dedicating this blog to my semester in the BCM110 and BCM112 courses. From this blog I will detail to all my readers and fellow classmates the difficulties that they and I are sure to come across over this course and interesting topics to discuss that I have learnt in my lectures and tutorials.

Such Uni, Much Blog