In this blog post I would like to analyze topics mentioned in “Critical Information Studies For a Participatory Culture (Part One)”.
Jenkins’ blog discusses a great deal about Tim O’Reilly’s “web 2.0” concept. After the dotcom meltdown, with only a few major companies still afloat, times were changing, technology was advancing, and a new culture was inevitable.
As Jenkins has clarified it several times, “web 2.0” is not, in fact, the concept of participatory culture. Participatory culture is the fuel that will drive advances throughout society using “web 2.0”.
Jenkins brings up an imperative statement, that there is a serious re-thinking that must occur. Old media is leaving, and new media is coming. With new media, not only must we revise the ideas of how we can portray media to the public, but also consider the impact this could and will have on our culture. In new media, a vast amount of control is given to the general public. We are no longer dependent on a select few companies’ biased opinions. Roughly 70% of the media broadcasted through television is controlled by just six different companies [GE, NEWS-CORP, DISNEY, VIACOM, TIME WARNER, CBS].
While this blog is not an argument entailing politics, it would be ignorant to dismiss the problem of propaganda. When just six companies control what you hear everyday on the news, you are not getting the entire story.
Instead, with new media comes more power to the people. Through social media like Facebook and Twitter, we have exponentially increased the sources of information that people now have access to. This not only helps counter-act the biased views that old media publicizes, but opens up countless avenues of opportunity.
The participatory culture of new media grants business freedom. Those looking to advertise their company can do so with convenience like never before. With the press of a finger, a tweet can inform hundreds of people in your town about a local business. The beauty of new media is that it just as easily can inform millions of people about a major corporation, whose presence is more widely known.
Jenkins also warns us to tread with ease in this field. As viral as new media has become, it is still in its infancy. With more public information online, comes a higher risk of fraudulent actions. Not only with personal identities, but also with copy right infringement.
New media is an avenue that all should explore. Its here, and isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.