Convergence Culture - Henry Jenkins


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Convergence Culture - Henry Jenkins

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Convergence Culture - Henry Jenkins

  1. 1. “No single medium is going to win the battle for our ears and eyeballs. And when will we get all of our media funnelled to us through one box? Never.”
  2. 2. INTRODUCTION Convergence Culture is described as the merging of traditional and new media. Henry Jenkins describes 5 processes that make up ‘Convergence Culture’. • Technological Convergence • Economic Convergence • Social or Organic Convergence • Cultural Convergence • Global Convergence
  3. 3. JENKINS AND MEDIA CONVERGENCE The term ‘Media Convergence’ refers to a range of media merged into one. Jenkins argues that media will be everywhere and that it does not exist in one form. “There will never be one black box controlling all media”. He also believes that media will continue to grow in multiple ways through computing and communication. “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.”. Here, Jenkins is referring to old/traditional media. Rather than old media simply dying it only ‘evolves’ in a new form. For example: cassettes to MP3 file, although very different in appearance, the idea behind both is very similar, if not the same. Jenkins feels that media is affecting us as consumers and that its also on the ‘verge of transforming our culture as profoundly as the Renaissance did’. Jenkins believes that user interaction and participation are very much ‘the work—and play—spectators in the new media system’. Overall, Jenkins describes convergence culture as a collision between old and new media. This collision has an effect not only on the consumer but the media producer as well.
  4. 4. CULTURAL CONVERGENCE Jenkins describes ‘Cultural Convergence’ as an ‘explosion of new forms of creativity at the intersections of various media technologies, industries and consumers’. The way in which we find ourselves affected by different mediums is leading us towards a ‘digital renaissance’. Jenkins believes that media culture is allowing us to be a part of the media we experience and that interactivity is becoming an integral part of the industry. Media culture gives “average people the tools archive, annotate, appropriate and recirculate content”. According to Jenkins, convergence also allows for a different kind of story telling. Narratives can be communicated through a variety of different mediums, this is known as ‘transmedia’ story telling. Depending on the subject matter, story tellers will use a type of media best suited for that narrative. Cultural convergence means the uses of culture to create media on a profit scale. This means a lot these days as You tube is creating new talent and content. Writers would take ideas that are popular in the public and that are popular. They will also use different cultures to put across messages in their films in certain directions. Hence why social networking and social broadcasting is prime in cultural convergence at present.
  5. 5. TECHNOLOGICAL CONVERGENCE Henry Jenkins refers to Technological Convergence as the process of taking “words, images and sounds and transforming them into digital information” from this I believe he is saying that as ‘old media’ is being transformed into ‘new media’ the potential of all of the mediums transforming and moulding into one particular type of medium. “ We are expanding the potential relationships between mediums and enabling them to flow across platforms.” Technological Convergence would be one of the main processes out of the five that makes the cultural convergence possible as if all mediums finally all became one then everyone would have the same resources and mediums from the same place, giving a larger participatory factor to the different mediums. 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.
  6. 6. GLOBAL CONVERGENCE Henry Jenkins describes Global Convergence as ‘the cultural hybridity that results from the international circulation of media content. “ I believe what he is saying is that although globally we all use the same types of mediums they in turn change over the globe and when a new type of the medium is used it is then followed on across the globe a bit like a dominoes effect. “The global circulation of Asian popular cinema profoundly shapes Hollywood entertainment.”
  7. 7. ECONOMIC CONVERGENCE In terms of big business this means creating and using media to its full extent at its time of fashion. This can be seen with Harry Potter and The Twilight films. Henry Jenkins describes this as ‘cultural production around synergies’ and thus he explains meaning ‘exploitation’.
  8. 8. SOCIAL OR ORGANIC CONVERGENCE This means the change in how we use information or search for it. We may be using new technologies now compared to 50 years ago to search for information but we are still searching for information for our own general knowledge or entertainment.