In Chapter 8 of MW, Mark describes “liquid life” as the “primarily shaped and lived” life by media workers, which poses change and insecurity and has diverse and complex attributes. The Chapter subtly concludes what we have covered in the whole semester: how media industry is confronting change and challenge, and how media workers deal with the new trends. However, in this post I want to talk about my own opinion towards the liquid life of female media workers. I personally believe the liquid life for women is even filled with more changes, challenges, insecurity and complexity.

In a recent report of The Guardian, industry guru believes that UK games industry “in trouble” if it can’t recruit more women. While people are asking the question why more women aren’t entering what is one of the major creative sectors of the 21st century, we have to face the truth that it’s not only about game industry but other creative industry related to media. As we talked in class, there are large quantity of women working in creative industry and media, but few of them can make it to the top. Another Guardian article, which was derived from debate raging on in the UK press about the prevalence and visibility of women in senior posts, argues that women prove critical for hi-tech companies to advance. The article presents how women are living a much more complicated “liquid life”:

Within digital media and advertising technology companies, which are the fastest growing in the media sector (online now accounts for the majority share of media ad spend, greater even than TV), women still trail behind their male counterparts. You just need to attend any digital media event and the likelihood of seeing anything more than a token female speaker or panellist is very low.

However, the article comes up with how women can actively shape the media life they are living on their own initiative:

  • Teach yourself tech. The author encourage women working in the industry to understand and be able to speak the language of the tech teams will go a long way. Most of the digital advertising sector is moving towards automation – targeted advertising and dynamically generated creative are just a couple of examples of how technology is driving the next era of advertising.
  • Be assertive. The author believes in fast growing digital companies you can’t afford to sit around and wait for opportunities to be given to you.
  • Network. Every event is an opportunity to network and a little black book of contacts will make you invaluable to the business and your colleagues.
  • Role models and mentors. Identifying people, regardless of gender, who are in positions that you aspire to or have skills that you need to develop, and finding out how they did it can help identify the steps you could take.
  • It’s OK to think like a woman. The author casts doubt on the old quote from Caroline K Simon – “Look like a girl, act like a lady, think like a man and work like a dog” by claiming it’s finally acceptable to think like a woman in business, particularly if women are to match the needs of online consumers.

Feiran

http://www.guardian.co.uk/media-network/media-network-blog/2012/nov/27/women-gender-media-innovation


Deuze and Stewart (2011) argue that despite the surge in usage of online media and creative industry products by consumers, the industry has yet to be able to effectively profit from this proliferation,

“the very people whose livelihood and sense of professional identity depend on delivering content and experiences across such media seem to be at a loss on how to come up with survival strategies—in terms of business models, effective regulatory practices (for example regarding copyrights and universal access provisions), and perhaps most specifically the organization of entrepreneurial working conditions that would support and sustain the creative process needed to meet the demands of a global market saturated with media.”

It seems even new industries are struggling to keep up thriving business models, as in the case of companies like Groupon and Living Social who pioneered the daily deals market. The entire draw of these companies, price promotion, is turning out to be an unsustainable model in the long run for the companies and their participating businesses.  The companies are responding to this downturn by laying off employees and ousting existing leadership in hopes that more “seasoned” CEOs will be able to turn the companies around. Whether or not this is an effective means for a solution is yet to be determined, but if we look at other media industries, these companies will need a lot more than just new leadership and slimmer staffs in order to survive in this tough economic culture.

 

-Emily

 

http://www.pfhub.com/daily-deals-leaders-groupon-and-livingsocial-dying-business-model-110/


College sports continue to show their growth in social media. Head coaches of many university teams have started to use it as a recruiting tool, keep up with the news cycle, interact with fans, and even have their own personality on it. According to a recent survey, at least half of all college coaches are on Twitter.  Earlier in the semester, I wrote about the Quack Cafe and how that will revolutionize social media.

Fieldhouse Media has been giving educational classes on Twitter for head coaches to get them better informed. The company has been offering social media education for athletes for years.

While most schools are on board, a few are lagging behind by not letting their student athlete’s or coaches use the forum. Many coaches believe this will put those schools at a huge disadvantage as kids continue to grow strictly in the social media age. I think schools need to get on board and stop living in 2001.

 

Matt Blaszka


As Deuze & Steward (2011) suggests in today’s technology and cross media variances, media companies and individual professionals have to constantly maintain their adaptation to the emerging new technologies. The fact that users now proactively take part in the acts of co-creation forces media managers and workers to rethink their processes and practices (p. 4). The challenges of this environment, though, may also present an opportunity to let artists wander outside of the box and push them to create original things.

Image

The illustrations of Creative Reveal Posters—Le Designer and Brand Guru—the creative art about being ‘creative’ in the ‘creative industry’ seems like a good example of this. The working environment or ‘creative ethos’ of creators is depicted in a very original way. The posters metaphorically depict creative artists. In Le Designer, he is a Harry Houdini-styled escape-artist magician; his hands are bound and his eyes blind-folded as he tries to perform something of a miracle, working under tight budgets and the time constraints. With the magician (and the creator’s) endeavors displayed in full public view, the text at the foot reminds you that there is ‘No lying. No cheating. No undercutting’. The second art piece, The Brand Guru, gives us a depiction of the creative worker as a fortune-teller or sorcerer, using some magic to cast a spell on consumers. As you click through the art, he transforms into a creature of the undead who undoubtedly uses his dark arts to ensnare us. The mustachioed psychic has the ability to ‘make and break brands with his bare hands’! He’s seen looking into his crystal ball for answers to questions such as: ‘Will it last? Will it sound nice? Will it make enemies? Will it succeed? Will it win my lawsuit? I find these illustrations very creative and appealing to the audiences’, but also the others in the creative industry. It’s creative work that must hold some appeal for creative workers.

Image

The story, posters, and links to the different version of the illustration can be found at: http://www.computerarts.co.uk/blog/roll-roll-creative-reveal-123497.

-Muge Fazlioglu


“What drives contemporary media management and media work in all the creative industries is a general shift in power away form professional content creators to users and owners.” (Deuze & Steward, 2011). With the emergence of social media – Facebook, Twitter, Linkdin, etc. – consumers are participating in branding of not only products, but also individuals. Celebrities have been turned into mega celebrities, larger than life, overnight thanks to social media by impressing fans, giving an inside view into their lives, and growing their following exponentially. Social media has ultimately become an outlet in which fans are branding celebrities.

Forbes has created a list of top “Social Networking Superstars,” and it ranks Rihanna at the top of this list. Rihanna has 59.6 million fans on Facebook and 23.8 million followers on Twitter. She encourages her fans to share and purchase her music, as well as view her videos, but most significantly she also lets her fans into her personal life by posting photos of her family and friends. Rihanna is estimated to have earned $53 million between May 2001 and May 2012.

Lady Gaga, the most followed celebrity on Twitter, landed the number two position on Forbes’ Social Networking Superstar list. She is estimated to have earned $53 million, 28 million followers on Twitter and 53 million fans on Facebook.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/dorothypomerantz/2012/08/09/rihanna-tops-our-list-of-social-networking-superstars/

Nikki Tuttle



After reading Mark and Brian’s chapter on media work, I was curious about the idea of companies collaborating with each other and collaboration of employees within a single company.  I wanted to explore the question that Mark raised about collaboration:   “How can we carefully build integrated functionalities, knowledge-sharing practices, and creative synergies across media companies and between media professionals (whom we employ or subcontract to)?”

I found two articles that explore media companies use of social networking and using cloud computing internally to improve their employee’s outputs.  Many companies found that their employees were more productive when using a social media platform to communicate and complete projects.  Not only were the employees more satisfied with their own work, the work that they were producing was far beyond anything they had created before when the main communication was through email.  To adopt these social media and cloud sharing networks, both articles articulated the need to employee involvement when choosing the platform.  If they employees were involved in the decision they found that it was more productive.  To do this, organizations found the need to have a good human resources staff.  The article by Smith highly encouraged organizations who are considering this to amp up their HR staffs and make sure that these employees are well trained to work with the companies employees when adopting a new way of communication.

I found this interesting in that we have talked so much about the decrease of jobs in the media field, but maybe there is a shift.  In order to supplement these new internal mechanisms which might decrease creative jobs is there a potential for an increase in jobs for human resources   This was just a question that came to mind when exploring companies adaptations and uses of new collaboration technologies. 

Sarah E. Lempke

“The Consolidation of IT: Cloud Computing, Mobility, Big Data and Social Media”. http://www.hispanicbusiness.com/2012/11/30/the_consolidation_of_it_cloud_computing.htm

Smith, Tineka.  http://www.cbronline.com/features/social-enterprise-collaboration-is-your-company-social-yet-271112


The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) recently released a study which indicates that young people wanting to work in film, television, and games in the UK are receiving discouraging career advice, and more of them are switching career paths because of this. These young people are “needlessly being discouraged,” and those more likely to drop-out of this path include people from lower socio-economic backgrounds and women.

BAFTA says the findings suggest that careers advice to aspiring television, film or games professionals is much more likely to be discouraging, compared with other career choices.

These findings become suspicious when considering the themes we have talked about in class. We revisit the issue of informing young, aspiring media professionals about the reality of working in the media industry. It would be interesting to see if this phenomenon was new, or if this “discouraging” advising has always occurred.

I take these findings with a grain of salt. It would be interesting to see what kinds of advice BAFTA qualifies as discouraging. It seems to me that informing young people about the liquid-life and precarity within the industry as well as the instability of semi-permanent work groups that are becoming more prominent in the industry, can juxtapose and disturb aspiring media workers’ views of a glamorous industry. This could be considered discouraging advice. Or, if it is indeed a lived reality, this could simply be considered (and should be, I think) simply presenting the facts.

~Senia

Article: BAFTA Study: Young People ‘Discouraged’ From Careers in Film, TV and Gaming


Free Work

27Nov12

It is amazing to me the backlash that some artists get for daring to ever consider not maximizing profits. Many authors in SF publish at least part of their work online for free. The outgoing president of the SFWA called any author who had any work avaliable for free download a webscab and a pixel stained technopesant wretches. This inspired the creation of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Pixel-Stained_Technopeasant_Day by Jo Walkton, devoted to encouraging authors to make a professional quality work available for download. 


Oakley (2009) believed that creative and cultural industry has “a surprising tendency to co-locate, generally in major cities, and often within the same neighborhood or building”. But the news piece I am sharing today demonstrates the artistic charm and centripetal force of smaller cities compared to London and New York. Cedar Rapids, the second largest city in Iowa witnessed its art economy grabbing an opportunity to get long-awaited boost. We’ve read a lot about how artists find it a challenge to make a living right now. For Cedar Rapids, the difficulty also exists, from “relatively small number of galleries and performance venues to the city’s overwhelming association with industry rather than the arts”. But according to the article, the community is embracing opportunities:

  • The opening of the NewBo City Market has brought hundreds more weekly visitors to the New Bohemia Arts and Entertainment District, the city’s emerging arts area.
  • New programs aimed at helping artists survive and thrive in a challenging economic climate have been started.
  • The nearby Ceramics Center added a 800-square-foot gallery space and wood-fired to provide exhibit and retail opportunities for ceramic artists.

As a smaller city, Cedar Rapids attracts “consumers from outside its limited local market”. Some inspiring moves are engaging and educating the marketplace, encouraging artists to do original work, and raising the opinion of fairly compensating artists for their work, for example, “artists should have health insurance”. We’ve learned that “the low pay and relative insecurity” and “the nature of the work” (Oakley article), but obviously this nature is being challenged. Another way to confront the obstacles is that arts organization administrators sharing the same work space will share challenges and solutions.

All the moves are aimed at “creating an atmosphere where people are encouraged to take a chance”.

Even though many articles have talked about how artists take advantage of digital media especially social networks in this digital age, the last sentence of this article laughed at this idea: “We are in a weird moment, culturally, where we think Facebook is the answer, but it’s not.”

 

by Feiran

http://thegazette.com/2012/11/18/make-art-not-money-cedar-rapids-art-economy-might-get-long-awaited-boost/




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