Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more

Vous voulez voir cette page en français ? Cliquez ici.


or
Sign in to turn on 1-Click ordering.
or
Amazon Prime Free Trial required. Sign up when you check out. Learn More
More Buying Choices
Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Start reading Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide on your Kindle in under a minute.

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide [Paperback]

Henry Jenkins
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: CDN$ 22.13 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
Only 1 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.ca. Gift-wrap available.
Want it delivered Thursday, September 18? Choose One-Day Shipping at checkout.

Formats

Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition CDN $9.99  
Hardcover CDN $55.47  
Paperback CDN $22.13  
Save Up to 90% on Textbooks
Hit the books in Amazon.ca's Textbook Store and save up to 90% on used textbooks and 35% on new textbooks. Learn more.
Join Amazon Student in Canada


Book Description

Sept. 1 2008
Convergence Culture maps a new territory: where old and new media intersect, where grassroots and corporate media collide, where the power of the media producer and the power of the consumer interact in unpredictable ways. Henry Jenkins, one of America's most respected media analysts, delves beneath the new media hype to uncover the important cultural transformations that are taking place as media converge. He takes us into the secret world of Survivor Spoilers, where avid internet users pool their knowledge to unearth the show's secrets before they are revealed on the air. He introduces us to young Harry Potter fans who are writing their own Hogwarts tales while executives at Warner Brothers struggle for control of their franchise. He shows us how The Matrix has pushed transmedia storytelling to new levels, creating a fictional world where consumers track down bits of the story across multiple media channels. Jenkins argues that struggles over convergence will redefine the face of American popular culture. Industry leaders see opportunities to direct content across many channels to increase revenue and broaden markets. At the same time, consumers envision a liberated public sphere, free of network controls, in a decentralized media environment. Sometimes corporate and grassroots efforts reinforce each other, creating closer, more rewarding relations between media producers and consumers. Sometimes these two forces are at war. Jenkins provides a riveting introduction to the world where every story gets told and every brand gets sold across multiple media platforms. He explains the cultural shift that is occurring as consumers fight for control across disparate channels, changing the way we do business, elect our leaders, and educate our children.

Frequently Bought Together

Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide + Spreadable Media: Creating Value and Meaning in a Networked Culture + A Creator's Guide to Transmedia Storytelling: How to Captivate and Engage Audiences across Multiple Platforms
Price For All Three: CDN$ 74.75


Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought


Product Details


Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Henry Jenkins, founder and director of MIT's comparative media studies program, debunks outdated ideas of the digital revolution in this remarkable book, proving that new media will not simply replace old media, but rather will learn to interact with it in a complex relationship he calls "convergence culture." The book's goal is to explain how convergence is currently impacting the relationship among media audiences, producers and content, a far from easy undertaking. As Jenkins says, "there will be no magical black box that puts everything in order again." Jenkins takes pains to prove that the notion of convergence culture is not primarily a technological revolution; through a number of well-chosen examples, Jenkins shows that it is more a cultural shift, dependent on the active participation of the consumers working in a social dynamic. He references recent media franchises like Survivor, The Matrix, and American Idol to show how the new participatory culture of consumers can be utilized for popular success and increased exposure. Jenkins' insights are gripping and his prose is surprisingly entertaining and lucid for a book that is, at its core, intellectually rigorous. Though wordy at times, Jenkins' impressive ability to break down complex concepts into readable prose makes this study vital and engaging.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Review

"Jenkins' impressive ability to break down complex concepts into readable prose makes this study vital and engaging." PUBLISHERS WEEKLY "Jenkins is an astute observer of media culture and his insights are spot-on." LOS ANGELES TIMES "For any Sony PS3 execs out there wondering why their technological masterpiece is being ridiculed by customers before it's even released.... Convergence Culture is a must read." SLASHDOT"

Inside This Book (Learn More)
Browse and search another edition of this book.
Explore More
Concordance
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
Search inside this book:

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?


Customer Reviews

5 star
0
3 star
0
2 star
0
1 star
0
4.0 out of 5 stars
4.0 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Culture driving Media Aug. 20 2014
By glen cochrane TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
I enjoyed this book a lot - as one reviewer pointed out, the focus seems more on the culture, rather than the technology. This was a nice approach to looking at technology as driven by culture, in a very example filled book. Rather than focusing on theory (which I often like to read) Convergence Culture explores what is happening, how people are using media in new (converging) ways. It seems obvious, but Jenkins spells it out in detail and with implication...and of course many relevant examples.

Jenkins doesn't fell into any heavy tech talk, and his writing is very easy to follow. He makes the concept simple, like a commentary on what is happening in the world around him. Comparisons to McLuhan aren't very useful (despite the taglines) as this book explains more about a change in how NAmerican culture uses media, rather than the media itself.

I can see this book becoming more valuable as the years move on from this transition era of technology. It is a fine snapshot of a very changing landscape in media's relationship with the public - this is clear from reading and remembering the past decade or two. Particularly useful for me is the distinction he makes between 'media' and 'technology'. Jenkins comes off as someone who really knows his stuff, but doesn't try to flaunt it or invent grandiose theories. He is journalistic and seems more interested in communicating.
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.1 out of 5 stars  37 reviews
23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A different take on convergence Aug. 28 2006
By J. Richard Stevens - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
I can't say enough good things about this book. Jekins critiques "traditional" convergence theory about converging media and argues that the instigator of convergence is the need for new patterns of consumption, not production. Each chapter addresses how fans of a particular program reorganize their media experiences to better participate in the discussion, analysis and, at times, production of future episodes or events.

Because he demonstrates through example, the text is approachable to the scholar and the layman alike. The subjects themselves make the read interesting, but Jenkins also brings his wisdom to bear at opportune moments. Highly reocmmmended for those who study media, culture or technology adoption.
54 of 67 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not Impressed Nov. 3 2007
By James Carragher - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Henry Jenkins says, in the Introduction to Convergence Culture, "This book is about the relationship between three concepts -- media convergence, participatory culture, and collective intelligence." He then defines the terms and, a few pages later, still in the Intro, writes, "My aim is...modest. I want to describe some of the ways that convergence thinking is reshaping American popular culture and, in particular, the ways it is impacting the relationship between media audiences, producers, and content."

In contrast to McLuhan who is bold to a fault in Understanding Media (read just before Convergence), but bold and not afraid to be wrong, and that's important. Jenkins aims low, way too low. "Modest" here translates to not trying very hard. His few pages on Wikipedia are very good indeed (he's a proponent, so am I). But otherwise, from Convergence Culture one learns:

1) people get information and entertainment from a variety of media,
2) people can get the same information from a variety of media,
3) fans are passionate about their TV shows and classic popular movies and books and some like and utilize spoilers,
and, repeatedly,
4) the program he directs at MIT studies these phenomena.

Sorry, that's not enough for me.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great look at the culture instead of the technology April 20 2009
By Jonathan D. Polk - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Henry Jenkins, Director of the Contemporary Media Studies Program at MIT, attempts in his acclaimed 2006 book Convergence Culture to look beyond the hype surrounding new media and instead analyze the cultural transformations that occur when these new media meet the old. Arguing against the idea that convergence should be understood primarily as a technological process, he instead demonstrates that it represents a cultural shift as consumers are urged to seek out new information and make connections among dispersed media content.

Rather than writing from an objective viewpoint, Jenkins instead describes what the media landscape looks like from the perspective of various localized people. He also is quick to dismiss the idea that in the future consumers will get all their media from one device, referring to this prognostication as the `black box fallacy.' Through his book, Jenkins explains how convergence is both a top-down corporate-driven process and a bottom-up consumer-driven process.

Throughout the six chapters making up the first edition of the book, Jenkins looks at a number of scenarios that highlight the way culture is shifting based on the intersection of new and old media. He describes in detail the fans of the television show Survivor who have banded together online to form communities that attempt to find out as many secrets about the show as is possible, using this example as a microcosm to explain how knowledge can be formed within a community that would be impossible to be formed by individuals working separately. He also discusses the ramifications that interactive audience-driven voting has had on the hit American Idol, and the potential backlash against its new brand of corporate sponsorship.

In the realm of movies, much attention is paid to the Wachowski Brothers' Matrix trilogy and the various other ways the universe was used by different media. Calling the practice `transmedia storytelling,' Jenkins explains how the unified universe across the multiple media gave viewers of the films an insight into the greater intended meaning and helped inform seeming gaps in knowledge that caused the later movies to be panned by critics. He then goes on to describe the way fans have created their own content in the Star Wars universe and the issues that have been raised. The explosion of fan fiction in the fictional world of the Harry Potter books is used as an example of the copyright problems both producers of fan content and owners of intellectual property face, while advocating such practices help young people learn ways of communicating and collaborating that are antithetical to the education they receive in schools.

Finally, Jenkins analyzes the way that politics is changing as traditional means for campaigning are being influenced and in some cases superceded by the new media options available online. Even with an afterward written seemingly towards the end of 2007, this is the weakest part of the book not because of anything Jenkins did or did not include, but due to the timeliness of issue. While analyzing the way Howard Dean was able to raise so much money in 2004 is worthwhile, without the discussion of how President Obama seized these ideas and raised millions upon millions of dollars causes the arguments to seem outdated.

Formatting errors abound in the book, with dozens of hyphens being placed in the middle of words for seemingly no reason. Often lines just skip down halfway through a sentence and at least once a block quote just ended, completely obscuring the point for which it was quoted. In all this is only mildly distracting, but it does tend to jar one out of Jenkins's narrative.

Timeliness is a problem with any book concerning technology, and can be seen in the other chapter as well, though not to as great a degree. As new media continues to explode and the changes to our culture become more and more drastic each day, Jenkins's book will become more and more obsolete. Yet his arguments are illuminating and his writing style is easy to read and able to be assimilated by scholarly audiences as easily as by educated laymen. For those interested not only in the types of new media that are currently emerging but also in the effects said media is having on our culture, Convergence Culture is a book you should read.
18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The King of Culture Aug. 6 2006
By Heather Lawver - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Henry Jenkins has a natural knack for taking any topic and making it instantly relatable and intensely gripping. I was privileged to have received a preview of part of this book before its publication, and I can honestly say that it's as entertaining as it is informative. Here he tackles completely new territory - the ever-evolving world of media and technology and how it impacts our society and the corporate world. This proverbial David & Goliath struggle for control of new media, the challenges of the inherent legalities, and the birth of new mediums; all of this complexity is laid out in the pages of 'Convergence Culture', and who better to guide us through this mish-mash landscape of new media than one of our foremost experts on media and popular culture?

Anyone interested in the Internet, media publication, fan rights, grassroots movements, blogs, and anything else that typically only your children or grandchildren can explain to you, would find this book not only informative, but riveting. I highly recommend it, and not just because I have a chapter almost all to myself (check out the chapter on Harry Potter and the infamous PotterWar - Alastair and I say Hello.) :)

Pick up a copy of Convergence Culture. You'll be glad you did.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Insightful Look At the Digital Media Age April 21 2009
By J. T. Zmikly - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Convergence Culture by Henry Jenkins gives an in-depth and critical look at how the World Wide Web has transformed traditional media to be more amalgamate, multi-level, and less isolated, allowing for a more participatory culture, and illustrating the power of collective intelligence. As the Internet blurs the lines that once separated specific mediums Jenkins writes, "Convergence represents a cultural shift as consumers are encouraged to seek out new information and make connections among dispersed media content" (p.3). By focusing on a few major examples of how the media is shifting from isolated experiences into transmedia storytelling, Jenkins explains the relationship between convergence, participatory culture, and collective intelligence, illustrating how the "new media" is "impacting relationships between media audiences, producers and content" (p.12). He explains that because aspects of our everyday lives pass through various media, convergence has created a new type of media consumer who communicates on several platforms. To reach the new consumer, traditional media must also be present on different forums.

Jenkins explains most of these "discussions" throughout Convergence Culture within the context of specific pop-culture and political examples. The first of which begins in his first chapter, Spoiling Survivor, where he outlines the impact of a communal reception of the TV show "Survivor." By looking at one of the most democratic uses of the Internet (message boards), Jenkins analyzes Survivor fans' interactions with "spoilers" of the show, calling it "collective intelligence in practice" (p.28). Here, he explains the idea that while not one person knows everything, everyone knows something and can bring some small bit of relevance to the discussion to, in this case, find a solution. In addition, Jenkins evaluates how this type of "bottom-up" collaboration can be both helpful and detrimental to brands and franchises.

Jenkins explores the grassroots culture of the Internet more in his second chapter where he discusses American Idol, a TV show made for audience participation. He begins the chapter by explaining the power of marketing brands via multiple "transactions," instead of using traditionally isolated mediums. He writes, "The experience should not be contained within a single media platform, but should extend across as many media as possible" (p.69). This method allows for advertisers, like Coca Cola, to be more than intellectual property; they are emotional capital. And in such a participant-oriented show that allows viewers to text in their votes, fans become more involved with the brand and may even become "brand advocates" (p.73). Jenkins explains, "Participation within such communities does not simply reaffirm their brand affiliation but also empowers these groups to assert their own demands on the company" (p.80).

In his third chapter, Jenkins looks at how the Matrix franchise uses several platforms to reach its multifaceted fan base, and considers it "entertainment for the age of media convergence, integrating multiple texts to create a narrative so large that it cannot be contained within a single medium" (p.96). As he explains how the transmedia story flows across different media forums, he illustrates how each medium brings a "distinctive and valuable contribution to the whole" (p.98). This way, the story may stretch far beyond the original plot, and the user creates it, and Jenkins explains that the convergence of media has allowed for such occurrences. However, Jenkins says that when creators have their hands in developing the other mediums, like video games, interactive Web creations and such, the stories are more likely to gain a following and develop further. His key point in the chapter was that while not all users will choose to "go deep" with the material, creators must allow the option.

Jenkins then explains the success of the Star Wars franchise and how users have become co-creators, or participants, in the stories via the Web and the onset of the digital age. Here, he explains the difference between participation and interactivity. Jenkins writes, "Interactivity refers to the ways that new technologies have been designed to be more responsive to consumer feedback...Participation, on the other hand, is shaped by the cultural and social protocols" (p.137). So, while the creators decide interactivity, and users may interact with what is given, participation allows users to become creators of the story. However, this blurring of creation on the Web has caused both problems and new directions. Jenkins explores two schools of thought on this issue: prohibitionists, who are usually characterized by traditional media, that try to limit all creation outside the originators, and collaborationists, who are usually led by "new media" and digital groups, that allow grassroots intermediaries to help promote the franchised. Jenkins likens this dichotomy with the battle between folk culture (grassroots campaigns) and mass culture (commercialism), as he cites several examples of how specific Star Wars spoofs and recreations have faired with George Lucas and the commercial media in terms of copyright infringement.

Moving beyond the television and silver screen, Jenkins then discusses the Harry Potter franchise in light of new media. Besides explaining some of the campaigns and movements against its content by conservative groups, Jenkins explores whether schools are doing a well enough job in educating students in media, and whether or not they are using media to teach. Using one young girl who created her own website around the Harry Potter series as an example of the power of the online forum, Jenkins analyzes the power of collaboration in teaching and using the Web to allow for a fuller experience from which one can learn. Jenkins writes, "In a participatory culture, the entire community takes on some responsibility for helping newbies find their way," in contrast to a classroom where only a teacher is the guide. He then explores the traditional idea of fair use, and wonders if the notion should be revisited in the digital age.

In his final example of media convergence, Jenkins visits the political realm and focuses on the "changes in communications systems and cultural norms" of the media and the democratization of the Web (p.219) in relation to the 2004 presidential election. In his discussion, Jenkins cites Howard Dean's (and later, John Kerry's) use of the Web to raise funds, and that his early Internet success was a "tipping point" for how we view media. Instead of the television (a broad, "top-down" medium) reigning, the Internet (a niche-oriented, "bottom-up" medium) finally had become the dominant forum. Jenkins says that using tools like Photoshop, fans and activists are more able to manipulate images to make a political statement, most evident in the aftermath of the Florida recount. He also mentions the fact that young people were being informed more by entertainment media like the Daily Show than traditional news organizations, showing an unprecedented convergence in media.

In his conclusion, Jenkins again highlights the fact that society is still trying to decide the exact ethical codes and social contracts to follow in these trial-and-error times. He states the problems and prevalence of media concentration and cites Chris Anderson's idea of the Long Tail as a viable route to many of the conglomerate and economic problems we see today on the "free" web. Jenkins closes the book by restating, "The power of the grassroots media is that it diversifies; the power of the broadcast media is that it amplifies. That's why we should be concerned with the flow between the two (p.268). Jenkins encourages his readers to rethink the goals of media education, as he explains the power within convergence culture, as full participants.

While Jenkins realizes that convergence cannot be fully understood at this point (or at least in 2006 when the book was written), his desire in writing the book was to inform the public on "discussions that are taking place" so they might have some input "into decisions that will dramatically change their relationship to media" (p.13). This allows even those who are not directly involved in many of the digital issues to participate on some level, as it affects everyone who uses media. Jenkins does a good job explaining many of the complicated jargon that might be foreign to those who have not used certain mediums or are not involved with the example literature he uses. Jenkins wrote Convergence Culture in a way that allows readers to walk away with a good understanding of his topics, no matter what their digital literacy. Jenkins also succeeds in sticking to his points, while not deviating far from the original intent, often repeating examples of converging media, participatory culture, and collective intelligence within each chapter. Throughout the text, Jenkins makes countless allusions to these central points, allowing the reader to deeply relate and care about the effect media is having on our culture.

Jenkins brings up several great points about how our culture currently views the media. One of my favorite quotes regards media literacy, which states, "Just as we would not traditionally assume that someone is literate if they can read but not write, we should not assume that someone possesses media literacy if they can consume but not express themselves" (p.176). This is one point that illustrates the vast misunderstanding and divide conglomerate media has with the grassroots campaigns the web endorses. By allowing users to consume but not create is a robbery of users' freedom in some ways. As Jenkins also mentioned on p. 142, "Marketers have turned our children into walking, talking billboards who wear logos on their T-shirts, sew patches on their backpacks, plaster stickers on their lockers, hang posters on their walls, but they must not, under penalty of law, post them on their home pages. Somehow, once consumers choose when and where to display those images, their active participation in the circulation of brands suddenly becomes a moral outrage and a threat to the industry's economic well-being." Kudos to Jenkins for highlighting the importance of these issues. As this new media system develops, we are equal collaborators with conglomerates and the voice of many can change how our culture sees the media.

One very small area I wished Jenkins would have mentioned more is an overview of what other media companies are doing that are innovative and experimental. While his focus on only a few major examples of convergence culture was well planned and effective, it would have been interesting to see what companies are taking chances on, that are working well. Beyond the traditional forms such as television, gaming, or literature, I was also interested to see what interactive companies are doing that may not fit in those categories, like virtual reality or web applications that find trends in the social collective, getting away form simple message boards or surveys. I'm not sure why, but the only medium he seems to have missed was any discussion about radio. All in all, Jenkin's Convergence Culture is absolutely worth the read. While I found it to be choppy at parts due to my disinterest in the specific topic, I highly recommend it to anyone who is interested at all in how our media is changing due to the onset of the Internet. It was a little slow-going in the beginning, but it picked up as the discussions heated up, and it was very educational on the world of internet marketing and trends. I give it 5 stars out of 5!
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews

Look for similar items by category


Feedback