Spreadable media: creating value and meaning in a networked culture /. Henry Jenkins, Sam Ford, and Joshua Green. p. cm. (Postmillennial pop). Includes. “If it doesn't spread, it's dead.” This catchy marketing slogan is, happily, only found on the book jacket of Spreadable Media. Henry. Jenkins, Sam Ford, and. “Based on what you know about digital narratives, what do you think the term ' spreadable media' applies to?” This and other questions about.

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Spreadable Media maps fundamental changes taking place in our contemporary media environment, a space where corporations no longer tightly control media. Request PDF on ResearchGate | Spreadable Media: Creating Value and Meaning in a Networked Culture | Spreadable Media maps fundamental changes . MedieKultur | Journal of media and communication research | ISSN Book Review Kirsten Mogensen Henry Jenkins, Sam Ford & Joshua Green.

Jenkins et al. There is a growing recognition that profiting from freely given creative labor poses ethical challenges which are, in the long run, socially damaging to both the companies and the com- munities involved p.

The authors compare commercial use of free labor to misuse of community assistance, and they call on companies to make sure that audiences get something valuable in return for their gifts of free labor.

Accordingly, spreadable content should be open, with loose ends and gaps that make it possible for an active audience to interpret it in the light of their own experiences. For the same reason, journalistic news writing and scien- tific papers are seldom considered spreadable. Anyone who regu- larly browses the social media will be familiar with the availability of this type of content and knows how often it is liked and shared, typically with some personal comments from friends.

Spreadable Media diaspora media, music, video, and commercials, which makes the book useful for a diverse group of researchers within cultural and media studies. The downside to this is that the often-lengthy case descriptions can be a bit tedious to read for an impatient scholar seek- ing theoretical implications. Many metaphors are used in connection with the distribution of content on web 2.

The Canadian author Cory Doctorow compares the process of sharing to a dandelion spreading its seeds with- out knowing where the process will end. Spreadable Media has adopted this dandelion metaphor for the book cover pp. The choice over how we deal with intellectual property is ultimately cultural, political, and economic — not biologically hardwired p.

The book demonstrates the valuable insight that can be gained when professionals and academics co-create. Unfortunately, the reader cannot freely download and share it. Convergence Culture Consortium: Doctorow, Cory Locus Magazine, online: Fiske, John Reading the Popular.

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Fiske John Understanding the Popular Culture. Mauss, Marcel []. The Gift: Form and Functions of Exchange in Archaic Societies. Rout- ledge. Reingold, Howard The Virtual Community: Homesteading on the Electronic Frontier. Reading, MA: The educational possibilities of social media are also becoming apparent — particularly valuable in countries with poor school systems.

Traditional distance learning has given way to online courses, and free educational resources abound: Spreading the message To recap: We are seeing dramatic increases in cell phone and internet usage throughout developing countries in Africa and other poor continents. We are seeing social media and SMS-based campaigns being harnessed by marketers such as Nando's, by savvy politicians, and by ordinary people with something to say.

We are seeing how easy it now is for information spread within and between communities all over the world. Aid agencies who truly wish to help the poor must create compelling educational or health-related resources that are valuable to the individuals they target and flexible enough to be shared, adapted and spread within and between communities without losing their original meaning.

How to market HIV To take one pertinent example in Africa, spreadable media could help provide a vital new way of thinking about HIV awareness campaigns. Rather than trying to push the condom message or abstinence, if you are the Pope with posters or pamphlets that get torn off or lost, and which many illiterate or non-English speaking people cannot read, can we create the equivalent of an advert for HIV awareness that will spread through communities of its own accord?

It could be internet-based, or SMS-based, or both. What is important is that it would rely on people to spread the message within and between their communities.

The same goes for hygiene campaigns, malaria prevention, teaching English, fighting rape and domestic violence Aid agencies need to think more like marketers, need to tap into existing communities, need to understand how people think and feel.

They need to use the lessons of Jenkins' white paper — humor, information-seeking, unfinished content, nostalgia and community — to create what Fiske calls "producerly" media which is ambiguous enough to intrigue, flexible enough to remix and valuable enough to be shared.

Bottom-up downsides The bottom-up approach to helping poor people out of poverty, using the power of word of mouth and spreadable media, isn't guaranteed to work. Particularly when it is reliant upon such a fickle and unevenly distributed resource as the internet.

What is the point of a HIV message, a critic might say, that reaches only some people in some parts of some countries? Don't we have a moral obligation to try to reach everybody all at the same time?

No, says the advocate of the bottom-up approach. As long as some people are getting some benefit, somewhere, at some time, we are achieving something. If it's compelling and useful to people, it will spread. If it's not, then go back to the drawing board.

Creating Value and Meaning in a Networked Culture

A second criticism is that relying on people to spread a message will not work if people aren't motivated to spread it, or if they twist the message until it is lost or perverted beyond recognition. The potential is high for a social media-based campaign to crash and burn — or more likely, to sink into murky obscurity.

Criticism accepted. Technology commentator Curt Hopkins, in an article denouncing the British government's demonization of social networking sites after the London riots, explains with characteristic bluntness why social media is not always going to produce great results: In many cases, social media is capable of leveraging the best we have to offer, but sometimes it craps in the yard.

Again, it is powered by people, and people, though often magnificent, are sometimes dumb as posts. Valuable lessons for marketers indeed.

But how much more valuable if we can use those same lessons to help spread useful educational or health-related content through developing countries — helping poor people in poor communities help themselves. The Wealth of Networks. Yale University Press.


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