Opening Remarks, Futures of Entertainment II

MIT Convergence Culture Consortium Futures of Entertainment II –

Opening Comments: Henry Jenkins, Joshua Green

Henry Jenkins
Joshua Green

Longer panels in order to encourage substiantial conversation.

Starts with TV of Tomorrow – Tex Avery 1953.

Did You Know that 4 out of 5 people now own television sets.

Early attempt to imagine the future of entertainment – already seeing there some of the conflicts we’ll talk about today.

Currently imagined futures – interactivity through VR.

Yet a different kind of interactivity is happening – the Simpsonize Yourself campaign as an example. But really there were few core models – so we call it personalization but it isn’t very personalized.

They also pushed the TV world into the real world – turning 7-11s into Kwickie Marts.

Also CSI episode on Second Life – where people are encouraged to continue the experience there.

Wii remote as a significant new interface. It isn’t just high end graphics which can change the interaction model.

MSNBC Newsbreaker – interactive game?

Of course gaming hasn’t gone away in traditional sense – Halo 3 example. Complex diarama which is touring the country as a kind of musuem piece. A faux veteran reflecting on this war which never happened – saving private ryan version in game space.

Heroes as an example of blurring the line between mainstream and fan media, embedding transmedia content – use of Ninth Wonder comic book in the show lead people to the site where lots of comics were. The interaction between what’s on the air and what isn’t is richer in this show than many others.

The Buffy comics as another season of the show (post-cancellation). Supernatural, Battlestar Gallactica – all overlaps between comics and TV.

Transmedia branding – the Geico Caveman. Ad to web series to Sitcom.

The Minority report clip – personalized content in the extreme. Ends with that surveillance camera.

Personalization as a mixed blessing – tailoring, micromeasurement. Facebook and targetted ad campaigns based on profiles.

Hokie Nation memorial around Virginia Tech memorial.

Graphic of apps – IBM Many Eyes chart – Top Friends, Frun Wall, Superwall, SuperPoke, Video, iLike.

NBC’s break with iTunes and move to amazonunbox. They get perhaps more control over their content. Also Hulu. Hulu will also point to content produced NOT by NBC and Fox.

Writers Strike video – promotional purposes only. Streaming video. DVD rate for digital downloads. Being distributed on YouTube. (Don’t rely on network news to tell the story of why writers are striking against the networks).

But youTube reflects the tension of the times.

Jenkins – what will be the effect of going into the primary season with both Colbert and Stewart are silent?

MIT Romney won’t debate a snowman – but candidates use all kinds of cartoons to discuss election issues – we aren’t allowed to use it to speak back?

Four Eyed Monsters – these new distribution mechanisms do allow independents new ways to get movies out – using online communities to schedule screenings in meat space of the film.

Soulja Boy.

Luminosity – the Vogue/300 parody. Taking content from television and mixing it up – vidding – started out as something done with 2 VCRs and a patch corde. Luminosity’s remix of the filme 300. – 20 funniest videos of 2007 – mostly female artists, 20 year history of a do it yourself community which will be shown at USC. Luminosity can’t name herself because she appropriates, yet she is one of their biggest fans and drives interest in them.

FanLib as the example of the tension – this is the year where the implicit contractions in the social contract have emerged.

Harry Potter – a contradiction in the sense that it is one the most MASS culture phenomenons you can imagine. And yet most of the analysis is that mass media success will give way to long tail, niche markets. Is this the last gasp of mass media power?

What about Rowling’s outing of Dumbledore? Is she enforcing some kind of reading on to the fan fiction which will be written after the fact? She is announcing a reading many fans in fact had – but what happens when that becomes the authorized reading?

HP Alliance – Harry Potter as teaching kids how to be activists – get young people involved in the process of political change, inspired by the interest Rowling has created.

Rodenberry demod star trek at a convention even before it aired on tv – so the fandom started even before the show.

Josh Green – the re-emergence of craft as a media phenomenon and a mechanism of participatory culture.

Android and the open handset alliance.

The folks at Skype arguing for access to the handsets using the same ruling which enables users to attach things to phone lines.

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