yourlibrarian: Buffy on the phone (BUF-WorkingGirl: eyesthatslay)
[personal profile] yourlibrarian
Yesterday I went to a lecture on "Media Life: A Life Lived in Media" by Mark Deuze after having heard an interview he did regarding his new book. I found the interview rather more informative but there were some interesting tidbits in the lecture. (You can access his slides here.)

The speaker's previous book was about people who work in the media industries, and how there is now a shift to creating content about content. What we once called marketing is now considered a form of content creation itself, as it is used to push attention to other content. That book explored the frustration of people who had gone into these industries to tell their own stories, only to find themselves instead promoting the work of others.

With the new book he is looking past changes for those working in the media to what the general public is going through. He has turned this into a philosophical question about media as an environment that we live in rather than something external that we access or utilize through tools. Read more... )
yourlibrarian: TechSupportSam-ruttadk (SPN-TechSupportSam-ruttadk)
[personal profile] yourlibrarian
Two stories caught my eye recently, one discussing how MySpace is declining while Facebook use continues to increase. My knee-jerk reaction to the MySpace story was that its users had always skewed young, and were now either using Facebook because it's so ubiquitous on college campuses, or simply wanted to try something new. And while most people are online to at least some degree, it strikes me that college-educated young people are still its heaviest users. I also wondered if Facebook is simply easier to use from mobile phones? Given how visually unfriendly I've always found MySpace on a computer, I have a hard time imagining it's all that phone suitable. I also suspect that whatever the application which demands the least time and commitment is going to get the greatest buy-in, at least in the short term for high volume use. Also important is that MySpace is going to lose a good chunk of revenue from Google soon. How will MySpace monetize itself, especially if use continues to decline?

Another article involved the growth of on-demand publishing. I thought it was interesting to see that on-demand book titles have now outstripped traditionally published titles. Given our current economic climate it hardly seems surprising that bookstores would want to cut down on inventory, and publishers would be acquiring fewer titles. Also not surprising is that many think eBooks are an area of future development, since its sales avoid the problems and costs of distribution associated with print. I do think the whole question of a standalone device for reading is still up in the air. Personally I think the Kindle will only ever be a niche product, but that may depend on how many services get bundled into it. I know of one person who wanted to get one solely for the built-in, low-cost WiFi which has apparently been boosting Sprint's numbers. But it seems like development may be going in the opposite direction as well.

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Social Informatics and Media Studies

April 2010

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