All of these examples originally had one purpose but over time they have evolved and adopted features of other devices. This therefore makes it harder to define what is the main purpose of a piece of media as the differences between them are becoming few.
He also believes that media will continue to grow in multiple ways through computing and communication.
“ media persists as layers within an ever more complicated information and entertainment system ... A medium’s content may shift, its audience may change and its social status may rise or fall, but once a medium establishes itself it continues to be part of the media ecosystem”.
What Jenkins is trying to say is that media does not disappear, it changes and shifts into different forms but essentially remains the same. For example, ebooks could be classed as a ‘new’ media, yet they are just a regeneration of an old media which has been around for many years. This may appeal to a different audience, yet it is essentially still the same medium as when it first began.
5 processes that make up ‘Convergence Culture’
“ When words, images and sounds are transformed into digital information, we expand the potential relationships between them and enable them to flow across platforms.”
This is the digitalisation of media content – even traditional content such as radio, books and film that are digitalised or converged. Example of this can be seen in the possibility of Cinemas using Digital imagery rather than film, and also how the new iPad shows how people can now read books on a screen the size of a book.
“ The horizontal integration of the entertainment industry. A company like AOL Time Warner now controls interests in film, television, books, games, the Web, music, real estate and countless other sectors. The result has been the restructuring of cultural production around “synergies,” and thus the transmedia exploitation of branded properties— Pokemon, Harry Potter, Tomb Raider, Star Wars.”
(Or using media to its full extent when it’s in fashion )
Essentially Jenkins is acknowledging the way large companies are exploiting the development of both new and old medias to their financial advantage, making franchises out of a particular brand and branching out into other medias. For example, Harry Potter began as a book but has since expanded into a multimedia franchise including films, toys, video games, sticker books, posters and clothing.
“ Consumers’ multitasking strategies for navigating the new information environment. Organic convergence is what occurs when a high schooler is watching baseball on a big-screen television, listening to techno on the stereo, wordprocessing a paper and writing e-mail to his friends. It may occur inside or outside the box, but ultimately, it occurs within the user’s cranium.”
This is also known as ‘media stacking’. This is getting more common in modern lifestyles as we are constantly surrounded by easily accessible media technologies, some of which are often essential to our daily routine – for example the internet is often used for studying which can be used whilst watching TV or listening to the radio.
“ The explosion of new forms of creativity at the intersections of various media technologies, industries and consumers. Media convergence fosters a new participatory folk culture by giving average people the tools to archive, annotate, appropriate and recirculate content. Shrewd companies tap this culture to foster consumer loyalty and generate low-cost content. Media convergence also encourages transmedia storytelling, the development of content across multiple channels. As producers more fully exploit organic convergence, storytellers will use each channel to communicate different kinds and levels of narrative information, using each medium to do what it does best.”
Some types of new media can be altered by average people. For example; homemade trailers and other content on youtube; wikipedia articles that are open to create and edit to the public; edited pictures can easily be hosted and shared on facebook and flickr; bands can upload their own songs and share them on sites such as myspace.
Production companies can now use any given media to their own advantage and make the audience feel like they are part of the process. This generates more interest in products such as films, music albums etc. For example a new film can be advertised over most media forms, tv/radio/newspaper/internet/cinema trailers/posters.
The level of integration and interactivity media now has in modern lives means that media can in fact change the way we live and view the world.
“ The cultural hybridity that results from the international circulation of media content. In music, the world-music movement produces some of the most interesting contemporary sounds, and in cinema, the global circulation of Asian popular cinema profoundly shapes Hollywood entertainment. These new forms reflect the experience of being a citizen of the ‘global village.’”
With the new advancements in media technology it has become much simpler to view media from around the globe. Whereas before it would have been necessary to physically travel to a certain country to view their culture, with the use of the internet this is now possible in a few clicks.