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Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide

by Henry Jenkins New York University Press
Pub Date:
08/2006
ISBN:
9780814742815
Format:
Hbk 368 pages
Price:
AU$164.00 NZ$168.70
Product Status: Available in Approx 9 days
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Convergence Culture maps a new territory: where old and new media intersect, where grassroots and corporate media collide, where the power of the media producer and the power of the consumer interact in unpredictable ways.

Henry Jenkins, one of America’s most respected media analysts, delves beneath the new media hype to uncover the important cultural transformations that are taking place as media converge. He takes us into the secret world of Survivor Spoilers, where avid internet users pool their knowledge to unearth the show’s secrets before they are revealed on the air. He introduces us to young Harry Potter fans who are writing their own Hogwarts tales while executives at Warner Brothers struggle for control of their franchise. He shows us how The Matrix has pushed transmedia storytelling to new levels, creating a fictional world where consumers track down bits of the story across multiple media channels. Jenkins argues that struggles over convergence will redefine the face of American popular culture. Industry leaders see opportunities to direct content across many channels to increase revenue and broaden markets. At the same time, consumers envision a liberated public sphere, free of network controls, in a decentralized media environment. Sometimes corporate and grassroots efforts reinforce each other, creating closer, more rewarding relations between media producers and consumers. Sometimes these two forces are at war.

Jenkins provides a riveting introduction to the world where every story gets told and every brand gets sold across multiple media platforms. He explains the cultural shift that is occurring as consumers fight for control across disparate channels, changing the way we do business, elect our leaders, and educate our children.

This book rocks for anyone with concerns about the immediate and future direction of media, culture, and omnipresence.
—Business 2 Business

Winner of the 2007 Society for Cinema and Media Studies Katherine Singer Kovacs Book Award

The standard convergence narrative of recent years presents media concentration as a threat both to the diversity of communication channels and to individuals opportunities to engage in public discourse. A respected and well-established media scholar, Jenkins (MIT) here counters such pessimistic perspectives on the brave new media world with theoretical and evidentiary attestations to the growing power of individuals and grassroots groups to affect the larger media landscape.
—Choice

Jenkins is an astute observer of media culture and his insights are spot-on. . . . He intends his book to be a powerful tool both now and in the future. . . . This is a book to be praised. It raises many issues.
—Los Angeles Times

Remarkable. . . . Jenkins' insights are gripping and his prose is surprisingly entertaining and lucid for a book that is, at its core, intellectually rigorous. . . . Jenkins' impressive ability to break down complex concepts into readable prose makes this study vital and engaging.
—Publishers Weekly

Jenkins tries to bring clarity to cultural changes that are melting and morphing into new shapes on an hourly, daily, weekly, monthly basis. Convergence Culture provides a view that looks at the restless ocean and tracks the currents rather than just looking at the individual rocks on the beach.
—The McClatchy Newspapers

Acknowledgments 
Introduction: “Worship at the Altar of Convergence”: A New Paradigm for Understanding Media Change 
1 Spoiling Survivor: The Anatomy of a Knowledge Community 
2 Buying into American Idol: How We are Being Sold on Reality TV 
3 Searching for the Origami Unicorn: The Matrix and Transmedia Storytelling 
4 Quentin Tarantino’s Star Wars? Grassroots Creativity Meets the Media Industry 
5 Why Heather Can Write: Media Literacy and the Potter Wars 
6 Photoshop for Democracy: The New Relationship between Politics and Popular Culture
Conclusion: Democratizing Television?
The Politics of Participation
Notes 
Glossary 
Index 
About the Author 

'Remarkable . . . Jenkins insights are gripping and his prose is surprisingly entertaining and lucid for a book that is, at its core, intellectually rigorous . . . Jenkins impressive ability to break down complex concepts into readable prose makes this study vital and engaging.' - Publishers Weekly 'Jenkins is an astute observer of media culture and his insights are spot-on.' - The Los Angeles Times 'For any Sony PS3 execs out there wondering why their technological masterpiece is being ridiculed by customers before its even released . . . Convergence Culture is a must read . . . Jenkins offers numerous insights on how technology and media professionals can forge better relationships with their customers.' - Slashdot 'Jenkins tries to bring clarity to cultural changes that are melting and morphing into new shapes on an hourly, daily, weekly, monthly basis. Convergence Culture provides a view that looks at the restless ocean and tracks the currents rather than just looking at the individual rocks on the beach.' - The McClatchy Newspapers 'One of those rare works that is closer to an operating system than a traditional book: its a platform that people will be building on for years to come. Whats more, the book happens to be a briskly entertaining read--as startling, inventive, and witty as the culture it documents. It should be mandatory reading for anyone trying to make sense of todays popular culturebut thankfully, a book this fun to read doesn't need a mandate.' - Steven Johnson, author of the national bestseller, Everything Bad Is Good For You
Henry Jenkins is Provost's Professor of Communication at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Southern California. He was previously the DeFlorz Professor of Humanities and the Founder/Director of the Comparative Media Studies Program at MIT. The author or editor of eleven books including Textual Poachers: Television Fans and Participatory Culture and From Barbie to Mortal Kombat: Gender and Computer Games, Jenkins also writes a regular column for Technology Review.