[iDC] Re: [iDC Digest] MySpace as hotbed of media activism (Trebor Scholz)

Charles Turner vze26m98 at optonline.net
Tue May 29 19:32:14 EDT 2007

idc-request at mailman.thing.net wrote on 5/29/07 at 7:13 AM

>They claim that "YouTube and MySpace are fueled with no shortage of
>desire. Rightly or not, they are considered the apogee of participatory
>media. But they are hardly hotbeds of media activism."
>What's your take on that? There are, of course, thousands of activist
>groups on MySpace. Perhaps we can dig up some examples and consider how
>they differ from activism 1.0.

The theses are a provocative read. I wonder, however, if their notion of
scale and scalar transformation are really epiphenomena of network
lifecycles, which they vividly capture in their first thesis. Geoffrey
Moore demonstrates this with regard to new technology in his book
_Crossing the Chasm_:


The transformation from "early-adopters" to "general consumers" is one
of market size, but centrally one of differing expectations from the

A more detailed portrait of how the culture of groups (in this case
small design firms) are linked to product lifecycles, can be found in
Peter Piven's book _Success Strategies for Design Professionals_, now
sadly out of print:


Piven develops a classification of "innovative," "service-oriented" and
"delivery-oriented" firms whose culture supports the design of products
at those stages of their respective lifecycles. Taking on projects
outside the culture of the firm is either impossible, or doomed to
failure, without corresponding (difficult) transformations in the
culture of the firm.

Sorry for the citation of business titles, but if we can be all
concerned about Richard Florida, I don't see why these are less

I also find their idea of "borders" interesting, but wonder if a
concept, drawn from Bailbar perhaps here:


that takes its intellectual force from an analysis of the "blowback" of
the colonial legacy of Europe, adequately describes some formal property
of networks. Maybe they've discussed this in more detail somewhere, I
certainly haven't read Rossiter's book.

So why couldn't the current media activism on YouTube and MySpace be
seen as early stage "Activism 2.0" (to pick up on your tag) and
following Lovink and Rossiter's thesis 2, be in need of our "upholding
the synthesis"?

Best, Charles Turner

<vze26m98 at optonline.net>

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