Henry Jenkins at DIY media seminar: “From YouTube to Youniversity”
January 24th, 2007

I’ve posted the first part of a multipart report on Henry Jenkins’ talk at the Annenberg Center for Communication on January 17 about “From YouTube to Youniversity.” Fan culture meets open educational resources, DIY video and participatory culture:

“Amateur content is getting global visibility. And fan communities are not just distribution channels, ” but the seedbeds of cultural creation, Jenkins stated, in a kind of “ecological relationship with blogs and grassroots communities that create cultural material and social networks that distribute it.” Examples: The deaf community using video of american sign language; people invade Walmart, use the equipment on the shelves to create video of Walmart and put it on YouTube; fan communities driving snippets of mass media moments to viral distribution through the online community (Stephen Colbert at the National Press Club dinner, for example); the famous OK Go treadmill video and the world of peer to peer grassroots music videos it represents (reminding Jenkins of vaudeville); lonelygirl15 (which reminds Jenkins of PT Barnum); the blurring of lines between real life and fiction in reality television; the emergence of YouTube as a political space with the tasering of a student at UCLA , George Allen’s racial gaffe, and the Saddam Hussein hanging going viral and effecting public opinion and election outcomes; the grassroots surveillance and sometimes vigilante action that mobile media afford.

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