Re: [-empyre-] Words and borders

Christy - thanks for the references and summary of views from that article
- very pertinent!
One thing that is interesting with respect to the adoption of new
terminology and its relation to market forces/concerns is that, on the
whole, it is the term * digital* rather than new media that has been
adopted...(although of course within the digital we also have sub-paradigms
such as vr, broadband etc)

New media, in its defense, I thnk is vague and somewhat confounds a kind of
complete appropriation to * a technology* that it could simply aligned with
and therefore sold on.  And this is partly why I would partially and I
stress partially reject Nick's circumscribing of the field via the
computer. Of course it makes sense to  say as Nick does that new media is
*a perspective focused on our culture's
new computational abilities* and that the work of theorists such as
Manovich, Murray etc have contributed enormously to this field

...and yet what is still missing for me in the heavy leaning upon
computation and the borrowing from information theory, is the intersection
with communications and consumerism, that we have in the past called media
studies. As Andrew Murphie and Chirs Chesher have pointed out, computation
shakes these up in a big way. But media continue to feature (ie as
nonlinear, mobile forms of communication and as new formations of
consumption - customised and massified, individualised and networked -  and
what we don't tend to see in much new media theory/analysis is extended
engagement with these - where is the cultural and political analysis of
laptop music, reality tv, booty, flash mobs, mobile communications etc
(Howard Rheingold aside)?  I'm not saying this analysis does not take place
but that it tends to circulate in online spaces themselves, as blog posts,
journal articles, people's sites - and disappear almost as quickly as it
appears. I would like to keep the working field of new media open to these
and other more consumer and *media* oriented incursions rather than stiick
with informatic formalism, genres of new media or else, I'm afraid to say,
boringly empirical styles of analysis coming out of the games studies arena.

cheers anna

>My reason for sharing these views is to highlight the following
>observation: New terminology emerges and is adopted out of consensus.
>Neologisms or added meanings to existing words are agreed upon not just by
>researchers but also by consumers. Adoption by many involves consensus
>between those that need to use the language to identify a product or
>technology and those that want their work understood. However, researchers
>and creators (not necessarily distinct individuals of course) will have a
>further expert language. So, when we try to rename a whole field that is
>referenced in the marketplace as well it is no wonder we are having
>difficulty: it is not within our power to do so. Therefore, we may have
>more freedom and fewer obligations if we angle the approach towards
>sharing views and offering suggestions for a language that relates to
>specific areas of content and research and not the whole shebang.
>Christy (yeah, Iím from that field, you know the one with the flashing
>lights and beeps).
>School of Creative Arts
>University of Melbourne
>empyre forum

all bodies are in a perpetual flux like rivers, and parts are entering into
them and passing out of them continuously.

Anna Munster
Lecturer in Digital Media Theory/
Postgraduate Coordinator
School of Art History and Theory
College of Fine Arts
University of New South Wales
PO Box 259
Paddington 2021

Phone: 612 9385 0741
Fax: 612 9385 0615

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