Introduction to Popular Culture Studies

Designing for Spreadability, Pt.1

Posted by tristendenney14 on April 5, 2017

When I sat down to begin reading our two online essays for Thursday, April 6, I did not quite understand how the titles, “What Old Media Can Teach New Media” and “Learning to Be a Responsible Circulator” were connected or related to each other. Also, since our discussions were beginning to talk about spreadability again, I did not know what to expect with these essays. However, not long after reading both essays, I found a major point throughout both essays that I believe not only affects one’s participation, but also affects one’s ability to create “spreadable media.” In the first article, I believe a large part of one’s participation and “spreadablility” relates back to the “nobody knows” idea. Like Amanda Lotz states, “Television, film, and recording industry executives all work in a universe in which they know full well that more than 80 percent of what they develop and create will fail commercially.” This idea of not knowing what will succeed in modern media is a scary thought, and this can cause individuals to refute the idea of participating as media “producers.” This idea also leads into the major point I saw in the second article, and relates to our class discussion on Tuesday about the “moral” way to interact with others online and through media. For example, though most of us today know what and what not to post online, there are still devastating effects by the few who choose to post things that could inflict pain on others. An example is Tyler Clementi who was discussed in the second article because he killed himself after his roommate posted a video of him in a sexual encounter he had. Due to tragic situations like these, I believe steps need to be taken to inform people on the consequences of spreading media that could hurt others. Moreover, though there is no clear line on what can hurt others or is inappropriate, we must teach others the do’s and don’ts of modern media, so participation can be promoted in a positive way.


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