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A Process of Becoming : a Digital Media Department's Place Within the Swedish Newspaper Industry

Stenberg, Jacob LU (2010) TKAM01 20101
Division of Ethnology
Abstract
I have in this thesis conducted fieldwork at the Swedish newspaper Sydsvenskan's digital media department. I was curious to find out how or if the financial instability that is currently sweeping across the newspaper industry is embodied through praxis within a department that many are eager to blame the instability for – that is, a digital media department. I wanted to pinpoint and observe real characteristics and consequences of what I, and many others, have labelled the new economy, i.e. a perhaps historical event in capitalism where (especially in media) business, companies, entrepreneurs, producers, users and technologies come together in unique, unexpected and almost promiscuous manners. I wanted to see how this flux of people and... (More)
I have in this thesis conducted fieldwork at the Swedish newspaper Sydsvenskan's digital media department. I was curious to find out how or if the financial instability that is currently sweeping across the newspaper industry is embodied through praxis within a department that many are eager to blame the instability for – that is, a digital media department. I wanted to pinpoint and observe real characteristics and consequences of what I, and many others, have labelled the new economy, i.e. a perhaps historical event in capitalism where (especially in media) business, companies, entrepreneurs, producers, users and technologies come together in unique, unexpected and almost promiscuous manners. I wanted to see how this flux of people and things find stability within such a schizophrenic climate. By taking the social constructivists' critique of never-static roles seriously and applying Nigel Thrift's notion of place in order to find an understanding of stability within a given context, I argue that the digital media department at Sydsvenskan is building stability through and with objects that the new economy tends to hide and, consequently, that this place runs the risk of creating and performing a media bubble by building products and systems that refer only to what the actors inside the bubble regard as important, instead of building for the actual users (what I will label digital narcissism). I will, through these conclusions, argue that this may lead to a new form of newspaper production process that rely more on expertise from completely new areas and perhaps less on in-house production and expertise. This study will therefore provide useful insights for media departments wishing to gain better understandings of (1) how to include factors that are not necessarily located within the popular media discourse, (2) the possible risk of digital narcissism and (3) how this may affect newspaper industries in general and digital media departments in particular. (Less)
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author
Stenberg, Jacob LU
supervisor
organization
course
TKAM01 20101
year
type
H2 - Master's Degree (Two Years)
subject
keywords
newspaper industry, digital media, digitization, new economy, new media, MACA, ICT, non-representational theory, Sydsvenskan
language
English
id
1731020
date added to LUP
2010-12-01 08:58:44
date last changed
2011-01-31 12:02:05
@misc{1731020,
  abstract     = {I have in this thesis conducted fieldwork at the Swedish newspaper Sydsvenskan's digital media department. I was curious to find out how or if the financial instability that is currently sweeping  across the newspaper industry is embodied through praxis within a department that many are eager to blame the instability for – that is, a digital media department. I wanted to pinpoint and observe real characteristics and consequences of what I, and  many others, have labelled the new economy, i.e. a perhaps historical event in capitalism where (especially in media) business, companies, entrepreneurs, producers, users and technologies come together in unique, unexpected and almost promiscuous  manners. I wanted to see how this flux of people and things find stability within such a schizophrenic climate. By taking the social constructivists' critique of never-static roles seriously and applying Nigel Thrift's notion of place in order to find an understanding of stability within a given context, I argue that the digital media department at Sydsvenskan is building stability through and with objects that the new economy tends to hide and, consequently, that this place runs the risk of creating and  performing a media bubble by building products and systems that refer only to what the actors inside the bubble regard as important, instead of building for the actual users (what I will label digital narcissism). I will, through these conclusions, argue that this may lead to a new form of newspaper production process that rely more on expertise from completely new areas and perhaps less on in-house production and expertise. This study will therefore provide useful insights for media departments wishing to gain better understandings of (1) how to include factors that are not necessarily located within the popular media discourse, (2) the possible risk of digital narcissism and (3) how this may affect newspaper industries in general and digital media departments in particular.},
  author       = {Stenberg, Jacob},
  keyword      = {newspaper industry,digital media,digitization,new economy,new media,MACA,ICT,non-representational theory,Sydsvenskan},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {A Process of Becoming : a Digital Media Department's Place Within the Swedish Newspaper Industry},
  year         = {2010},
}