Introduction to Popular Culture Studies

Courting Supporters for Independent Media, Pt.2

Posted by tristendenney14 on April 17, 2017

As we near the end of our Courting Supporters for Independent Media section, I was very interested in what the wide range of media experts had to say in Chapter 6 of Spreadable Media. For example, there were essentially two major points that stood out to me throughout this chapter. First, was the introductory section of Chapter 6, pages 229-232. Throughout this section, animator Nina Paley and Cory Doctorow’s ideas for spreading their independent media were very impressive and possessed a lot of potential. Also, I felt they were fairly “elementary” in the sense that no one quite tries these methods for gaining supporters because they are too focused on the monetary value. Paley states, “I hereby give Sita Sings the Blues to you. […] Please distribute, copy, share, archive, and show Sita Sings the Blues… Conventional wisdom urges me to demand payment for every use of the film, but then how would people without money get to see it?” Paley also says, “When I decided to give it away free online, what finally made me realize this was viable was when I realized that this didn’t mean it wouldn’t be seen on the big screen, that the internet is not a replacement for a theater. It’s a complement… The audience, you, and the rest of the world is actually the distributor of the film.” These quotes truly describe what courting supporters for independent media and Spreadable Media are all about. Though Paley and Doctorow released their media free of charge for audiences to do whatever they pleased with it, the ultimate goal was to get the word out and spread the media because the monetary benefits would come later. In relation to this example was my second point I liked in this chapter referring to the section of “Collaborative ‘Sourcing,’ ‘Funding,’ and ‘Surfing’.” I really enjoyed reading about Susan Buice and Arin Crumley’s movie project where they simply spread the word through as many media outlets as they could, while gathering data on locations where consumers would watch it. Though Buice and Crumley had a limited budget and no major connections in the movie industry, they still managed to provide consumers with a movie they wanted to see. Therefore, these two examples are perfect descriptions of how grassroots media can and will become more successful in the future.


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