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Audiences Assemble : becoming an audience and produser in mixed media environments

Hill, Annette LU (2020)
Abstract
How can we understand the patterns and contours of audiences in a mixed media environment? I’m curious about the tracks people make as they become aware of themselves as constituting an audience. These tracks include the way we listen to a soundtrack and relate this to the narrative in a drama; listening can help us find our way through storytelling, signposting how we relate to broader themes and cultural contexts. Another set of tracks might move us from the identity of audience to produser, for example making a remix from a soundtrack as a creative response to broader themes in a drama, another means of articulating our identities in the media landscape.

What follows is an argument about audience assemblage that resists the... (More)
How can we understand the patterns and contours of audiences in a mixed media environment? I’m curious about the tracks people make as they become aware of themselves as constituting an audience. These tracks include the way we listen to a soundtrack and relate this to the narrative in a drama; listening can help us find our way through storytelling, signposting how we relate to broader themes and cultural contexts. Another set of tracks might move us from the identity of audience to produser, for example making a remix from a soundtrack as a creative response to broader themes in a drama, another means of articulating our identities in the media landscape.

What follows is an argument about audience assemblage that resists the common ways in which we conceptualize audiences as already there, an aggregate to be measured. This argument also resists the conceptualization of audiences as produsers (Bruns, 2008), where there is an end goal, an engagement result as it were. For Tim Ingold (2011) the meaning of the term “production” is ripe for re-assessment, shifting its meaning from the activities of making and building to processes of hope, growing and dwelling. Here, we see a way of understanding audience practices as a process of becoming, not an object or construction but what we might think of as path trails to be found within our encounters with media.

This chapter offers a critical analysis of the creative practices of sound production and audience experiences for the cult conspiracy television drama Utopia, to reveal people’s awareness of themselves as becoming audiences and produsers. What is significant for this analysis is how the soundtrack mixes with the visual storytelling, fostering a distinctive way of listening and seeing not only the world depicted in Utopia but also the real world in which audiences, listeners, and producers live. This audio-visual composition generates audience assemblage, where people make connections, becoming producers of hope, as well as produsers of new content. In the case of Utopia these audience assemblages, occurring in various geographical places, destablize the market terrain for digital television, generating a geo-political audience alert to the power relations within media industries and in society and culture.
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Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
publishing date
type
Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceeding
publication status
published
subject
keywords
media audiences, affect theory, cult drama, assemblage theory
host publication
Produsing Theory in a Digital World 3.0 : The intersection of audiences and production in contemporary theory Vol 3 - The intersection of audiences and production in contemporary theory Vol 3
editor
Lind, Rebecca
edition
3
publisher
Peter Lang Publishing Group
ISBN
978-1-4331-5340-2
DOI
10.3726/b13192
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
fcde3ee2-9342-4cf1-adf3-44d85720e913
date added to LUP
2020-09-21 12:37:16
date last changed
2020-09-28 12:49:50
@inbook{fcde3ee2-9342-4cf1-adf3-44d85720e913,
  abstract     = {How can we understand the patterns and contours of audiences in a mixed media environment? I’m curious about the tracks people make as they become aware of themselves as constituting an audience. These tracks include the way we listen to a soundtrack and relate this to the narrative in a drama; listening can help us find our way through storytelling, signposting how we relate to broader themes and cultural contexts. Another set of tracks might move us from the identity of audience to produser, for example making a remix from a soundtrack as a creative response to broader themes in a drama, another means of articulating our identities in the media landscape.<br/><br/>What follows is an argument about audience assemblage that resists the common ways in which we conceptualize audiences as already there, an aggregate to be measured. This argument also resists the conceptualization of audiences as produsers (Bruns, 2008), where there is an end goal, an engagement result as it were. For Tim Ingold (2011) the meaning of the term “production” is ripe for re-assessment, shifting its meaning from the activities of making and building to processes of hope, growing and dwelling. Here, we see a way of understanding audience practices as a process of becoming, not an object or construction but what we might think of as path trails to be found within our encounters with media.<br/><br/>This chapter offers a critical analysis of the creative practices of sound production and audience experiences for the cult conspiracy television drama Utopia, to reveal people’s awareness of themselves as becoming audiences and produsers. What is significant for this analysis is how the soundtrack mixes with the visual storytelling, fostering a distinctive way of listening and seeing not only the world depicted in Utopia but also the real world in which audiences, listeners, and producers live. This audio-visual composition generates audience assemblage, where people make connections, becoming producers of hope, as well as produsers of new content. In the case of Utopia these audience assemblages, occurring in various geographical places, destablize the market terrain for digital television, generating a geo-political audience alert to the power relations within media industries and in society and culture.<br/>},
  author       = {Hill, Annette},
  booktitle    = {Produsing Theory in a Digital World 3.0 : The intersection of audiences and production in contemporary theory Vol 3},
  editor       = {Lind, Rebecca},
  isbn         = {978-1-4331-5340-2},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {09},
  publisher    = {Peter Lang Publishing Group},
  title        = {Audiences Assemble : becoming an audience and produser in mixed media environments},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.3726/b13192},
  doi          = {10.3726/b13192},
  year         = {2020},
}