Tuesday, April 09, 2013

Thinking through audiences and institutions...

Successfully responding to the audience and institutions section of the exam is about being able to link your case studies to the theory. This needs to be thought through. Here's an example...
NME is one of the longest running music magazines. It has expanded horizontally (Melody Maker merged with NME in 2000) as well as diagonally multiple times: 
  • NME.com (1996)
  • NMEVideo.com (2011) - replacing the defunct TV channel
  • NME TV (2007 - 2010)
  • NME Radio (2008)
  • Social Media (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube) 
Each of these expansions can be seen to be in response to a number of factors including consumer demand for converged content, and the desire to turn NME (the weekly indie-music magazine) into a recognised Brand at the heart of the British music industry. 
Moreover, each of these expansions have caused changes in both production and exchange. 
Production has evolved moving from a concentration on written content even into the launch of NME.com but that soon changed as web technologies improved. With the move to high speed broadband connections  NME has sought to make the most of streaming audio and video online through their websites. Moreover, they have launched several apps that do the same. This suggests that they have recognised the power of these mediums. As such, NME as a production company has grown to include a diverse mixture of roles beyond the traditional journalists. Moreover, the magazine itself has become integral to promoting the online arm of the brand through intertextual referencing to the website and apps on every single page.  
Exchange has also certainly been effected. In their efforts to meet consumer demand they have developed a more direct relationship with their target audience. Events such as a Nirvana Nevermind Listening Party (2011) organised through Twitter shows how the company is seeking to leverage social media to keep readers engaged in the NME brand. In part due to the success of this event the magazine has continued to produce content related to classic albums including self-produced documentaries...
This is unstructured and would need to be presented more eloquently in your essay, but what I am trying to show you is how you need to be thinking this through... you have to connect the theory: expansion, convergence, social media etc, with the case studies, in this case NME.

You should be able to do this for three magazines to support different arguments within your essay.

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