Spreadable Media: Creating Value and Meaning in a Networked Culture

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NYU Press, Jan 21, 2013 - Law - 352 pages

How sharing, linking, and liking have transformed the media and marketing industries

Spreadable Media is a rare inside look at today’s ever-changing media landscape. The days of corporate control over media content and its distribution have been replaced by the age of what the digital media industries have called “user-generated content.” Spreadable Media maps these fundamental changes, and gives readers a comprehensive look into the rise of participatory culture, from internet memes to presidential tweets.

The authors challenge our notions of what goes “viral” and how by examining factors such as the nature of audience engagement and the environment of participation, and by contrasting the concepts of “stickiness”—aggregating attention in centralized places—with “spreadability”—dispersing content widely through both formal and informal networks. The former has often been the measure of media success in the online world, but the latter describes the actual ways content travels through social media. The book explores the internal tensions businesses face as they adapt to this new, spreadable, communication reality and argues for the need to shift from “hearing” to “listening” in corporate culture.

Now with a new afterword addressing changes in the media industry, audience participation, and political reporting, and drawing on modern examples from online activism campaigns, film, music, television, advertising, and social media—from both the U.S. and around the world—the authors illustrate the contours of our current media environment. For all of us who actively create and share content, Spreadable Media provides a clear understanding of how people are spreading ideas and the implications these activities have for business, politics, and everyday life, both on- and offline.


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SPREADABLE MEDIA: Creating Value and Meaning in a Networked Culture

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A wide-ranging examination of the contemporary media environment as individuals increasingly control their own creation of content.Jenkins (Communication and Journalism/Univ. of Southern California ... Read full review


Why Media Spreads
1 Where Web 20 Went Wrong
2 Reappraising the Residual
3 The Value of Media Engagement
4 What Constitutes Meaningful Participation?
5 Designing for Spreadability
6 Courting Supporters for Independent Media
7 Thinking Transnationally
About the Authors

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About the author (2013)

Henry Jenkins (Author)
Henry Jenkins is the Provost’s Professor of Communication, Journalism, Cinematic Arts and Education at the University of Southern California. He is the author or editor of 20 books including Textual Poachers: Television Fans and Participatory Culture, Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide, Spreadable Media: Creating Meaning and Value in a Networked Society, and By Any Media Necessary: The New Youth Activists. He blogs at henryjenkins.org and co-hosts the podcast How Do You Like It So Far?

Sam Ford (Author)
Sam Ford is Director of Digital Strategy with Peppercomm Strategic Communications, an affiliate with the MIT Program in Comparative Media Studies and the Western Kentucky University Popular Culture Studies Program, and a regular contributor to Fast Company. He is co-editor of The Survival of the Soap Opera (2011).

Joshua Green (Author)
Joshua Green is a Strategist at digital strategy firm Undercurrent. With a PhD in Media Studies, he has managed research projects at MIT and the University of California. He is author (with Jean Burgess) of YouTube: Online Video and Participatory Culture (2009, Polity Press).

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