Sinnreich and Latonero (2013)
|Sinnreich and Latonero (2013)|
|Title:||Tracking Configurable Culture From the Margins to the Mainstream|
|Author(s):||Sinnreich, A., Latonero, M.|
|Citation:||Sinnreich, A., & Latonero, M. (2013). Tracking Configurable Culture From the Margins to the Mainstream. Journal of Computer‐Mediated Communication, 19(4), 798-823.|
|Link(s):||Definitive , Open Access|
|Key Related Studies:|
|About the Data|
|Data Description:||In July 2006, the authors fielded a survey (completed by 1,779 respondents) dedicated to exploring the awareness, behaviors and opinions of US adults regarding configurable cultural practices across a range of media, including mashups, remixes (music and video), machinima (fan movies made with video games), and mods (fan-created video game modifications).
As in the 2006 study, 2010 survey respondents were members of a larger panel previously recruited online by a California-based market research firm called Intellisurvey. The survey was programmed, hosted and administered online. The 2010 completed survey sample consisted of 3,055 adult, English-speaking respondents from dozens of countries including the US (36%), India (11%), Turkey (10%), Canada (5%), South Africa (5%), and the Philippines (5%).
|Data Type:||Primary data|
|Secondary Data Sources:|
|Data Collection Methods:|
|Data Analysis Methods:|
|Cross Country Study?:||Yes|
|Government or policy study?:||No|
|Time Period(s) of Collection:||
In this study, we analyze data from surveys conducted in 2006 and 2010, tracking changes in awareness, engagement and attitudes surrounding emerging digital cultural forms over this 5-year period. Our analysis, based on results from thousands of adults around the globe, shows that not only have remixes, mashups and other forms of "configurable culture" become mainstream phenomena, but also that the attitudes surrounding their cultural legitimacy are shifting. While copyright industries still promote a binary theft/permission framework, many people acknowledge the validity of some appropriation, and are actively negotiating the law’s limitations. Yet, those most engaged in challenging dominant copyright narratives and exploring these emergent forms are those who hold the reins of cultural power: the young, educated and wealthy.
Main Results of the Study
Main results of study:
- Configurable cultural practices, which employ digital networked technologies and collapse the traditional distinction between production and consumption, have grown in awareness, usage and engagement among Americans in recent years.
- Configurable culture has global reach and its impact is greater outside of the US than within it.
- The authors found that nationality, age, gender and income tend to vary with degrees of expertise, awareness, usage, engagement and opinion regarding these cultural practices.
- Young people are far more likely than their elders to concede that appropriation-based work such as mashups and remixes are always or sometimes “original” and therefore culturally valuable or valid.
- Users of Creative Commons licenses tend to skew younger, wealthier, better educated, and more male than the overall population, problematizing the premise that such licenses may serve to democratize cultural power.
Policy Implications as Stated By Author
- Findings on configurability, gender and income raise some concerns regarding self-efficacy and social equality.
- While men and women appear to know about configurable culture in equal numbers, the enduring gap in engagement, especially when it comes to technology-centric media such as software and games, suggests that even if they have an equivalent level of access to digital technology, women tend to have a lower level of expertise and/or perceived self-efficacy in relation to such technology.
- Similarly, the fact that income tends to vary with usage and engagement, but not awareness, suggests that full participation in digital culture still requires a degree of social power conferred by wealth. This provides further support for critiques of “digital divide” research that complicate the traditional measures of access and exposure to new technologies by suggesting that expertise and self-efficacy are vital elements of social equality as well.
Coverage of Study
|Level of aggregation:||Individual|
|Period of material under study:||2006|
|Level of aggregation:||Individual|
|Period of material under study:||2010|