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UF / Communications / ADV 3405 / the cultural logic of media convergence

the cultural logic of media convergence

the cultural logic of media convergence


School: University of Florida
Department: Communications
Course: TV and American Society
Professor: Robert wells
Term: Fall 2016
Tags: Convergence, tv, Film, radio, social, Construction, shaping, Marconi, Kintegraph, fcc, regulations, Rates, ratings, shares, digitalization, telecommunications, viewer, audience, CPM, Advertising, Rating, share, neilsen, PBS, obscenity, indecency, profanity, peg, and Copyright
Cost: 50
Name: Study Guide for Exam 1, TV in American Society
Description: Textbook Introduction (p.1-13) Textbook: Ch.11 The cultural logic of media convergence -Jenkins (2004) Textbook : Ch. 1 Spoiling Survivor-Jenkins (2006) Textbook: Ch. 2 Recounting the Audience-Lotz (2009) Textbook: Ch. 3
Uploaded: 09/14/2016
12 Pages 4 Views 6 Unlocks

Ora R Knopik Study Guide for TV and American Society

A system for transmitting visual images and sound that are reproduced on screens, chiefly used to broadcast programs for entertainment, information, and education.

Exam 1:Sept. 20. 


● pencil/eraser 

● basic calculator 

● photo ID 

Information covered on the exam and in this guide, but be sure to read as well: 

● Textbook Introduction (p.1­13) 

● Textbook: Ch.11 

● The cultural logic of media convergence ­Jenkins (2004) 

● Textbook : Ch. 1 

● Spoiling Survivor­Jenkins (2006) 

● Textbook: Ch. 2 

●  Recounting the Audience­Lotz (2009) 

● Textbook: Ch. 3 


● Television: a system for transmitting visual images and sound that are reproduced on screens, chiefly used to broadcast programs for entertainment, information, and education​.

● It is a commercial industry, a democratic institution, a textual form, a site of cultural representation, a part of everyday life, and a technological medium

The belief that technological development determines social and cultural change.

If you want to learn more check out shannon chung

● TV as we know it is changing, we can watch it on a variety of devices (as of 2013 the most popular is still traditional tv) ​ that are typically have time shifting ​capabilities: that is, we can determine what and when we want to watch.

○ Traditional​: live = cable, antenna, satellite, on a tv set

○ Nontraditional​: you control when, what, where, and on what device to watch. Time shifting companies like Netflix are beginning to overcome traditional tv. ○ These are merging with new creations. Don't forget about the age old question of judge peter johnstone

● People have different prime times ​­popular times for watching­ for their devices. ● Nielsen ​defines tv as watching live or time­shifted content on a television set.​ (But time­shifted content like on a DVR is not traditional TV) If you want to learn more check out uwga

SuperBowl XXXVIII Incident with Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake changed the industry.

Who is Guglielmo Marconi?

● Reasons:

○ A fine was sought and later voided against the producers for indecent exposure. ○ TV was the technology that showed instant, live and taped exposure of the event. ○ It helped to cement the idea of censorship: what should be on tv and when. ○ Politicians used a woman’s breasts as a platform and defined the incident as “Indecent exposure.” We also discuss several other topics like brian cavanaugh ecu

○ It set apart people of different cultures and age ranges. Also of gender: ■ White men made it clear that they had control over women’s (namely black women’s) bodies in the media.

Ora R Knopik Study Guide for TV and American Society


3 ways to examine how technology affects society and vice versa. We also discuss several other topics like uga csci 1301

1. Technological determinism​: the belief that technological development determines social and cultural change. Perhaps this means that we are no longer thinking critically nor are we civically engaged. Example: the invention of Amazon Pantry means I don’t have to go to the grocery for paper products anymore. I just order them online and receive them on my doorstep.

a. Marshall McLuhan​ ­  predicted a global village aka homogenization of society. He said that “the medium is the message.”

b. You don’t have to be literate to experience TV, in this way it is a great equalizer.​ 2. Social construction (meaning) of technology:​ human culture and interpretation determine the meaning of technology. Technology has no meaning outside of social context.  Example: Iphone users often feel a certain negative connotation when they use Imessage with a non iphone user: the messages show up green instead of blue. For this reason, those who have iphones think they are richer/better than those who use other cellphones.

3. Social shaping (developing) of technology:​ Human choices, whether consciously or not, determine what technology becomes. Example: Ipods and maps are combined into our iphones because it is more convenient to have everything in one device. Don't forget about the age old question of kexylate


● Guglielmo Marconi​ invented the radio in 1895 (but didn’t get popular until the 1920s­1930s) as well as the first broadcasting medium.

○ First time in history you didn’t need to be educated to be exposed to information. ○ Helped to bring a similar culture into the American living room. (it was the first step toward a homogenized culture like Marshal McLuhan had predicted)


● Invented by Eadweard Muybridge​ (1872); showed a running horse

● Edison Lab’s Kintegraph​ “peephole movie” in 1889. (First copyrighted movie: Fred Ott’s sneeze in 1894).

● 1894: Auguste and Louis Lumiere patent the cinematograph​ aka projected images out onto a screen, which allowed for mass audiences

○ 1895 “Exiting the Factory”: first projected film

○ 1895 “L'Arrivée d’un Train À la Ciotat”: the first public motion picture viewing to a paying audience.

● Developing into a storytelling medium instead of just moving images.

○ 1902 “A Trip to the Moon” by Georges Melies: 1st sci fi

○ 1903 “The Great Train Robbery” by Edwin Porter: first action film, first western, first blockbuster

Ora R Knopik Study Guide for TV and American Society

● Emergence of Hollywood and the star system brought forth:

○ 1928­48: Golden Era​ of movies

○ Genres were established.

WWII: electronic manufacturing picked up with a rise in consumer life.  TV eclipsed movies as the most popular pastime.

● 1939: RCA’s debuted TV at World’s Fair

○ Same year: FDR 1st president on TV

● After WWII, TV took off with NBC, CBS, ABC, and DuMont

○ 128+ stations

● Television Stars: Milton Berle: Mr. Television from The Texaco Star Theater (TV sales doubled from this town 1948­1956 and water use dropped)

○ Most TV shows were performed live

● Suburban life: changing our culture: people watched tv socially at pubs and with fam at home; TV dinners came to be; ads were incorporated into TV.

● Regulations in the 40s: standards that halted progression into color TV ○ National Television System Committee (NTSC) standards set: 4:3 ratio for the screen, black and white tv, 525 lines of resolution, 30 frames per second. ○ 1948­52 FCC ordered a channel freeze to figure out what a standard transmission would be and to make room for education and to fix overlap; they also made color tv the standard, and reduced channel interference (static). ■ ABC, NBC, CBS established their dominance during the freeze and grew their audiences/reputations.

1950s and 60s: More variety, first generation growing up with TV

● 50s: Color tv, videotapes, & CATV (allowed further distribution of TV) ○ Community Antenna TeleVision (CATV): Entrepreneurial venture to promote TV series and broadcast to remote areas: antennae on hills distributed signal to rural communities

● Walt Disney’s Wonderful World of Color 1961­1969 boosted demands for color TVS even though they were expensive.

● Videotape Recorder: 1956 first by Ampex, and it was less expensive and enabled editing of programming.

● Changes in TV

○ Hollywood joins tv and Disney is on ABC

○ New genres: game shows, soap operas, and kids’ shows

○ Celebrities

○ Quiz Shows raised awareness of scandals and mistrust in TV viewers ● FCC regulations

Ora R Knopik Study Guide for TV and American Society

○ 1934: Federal Communications Commission formed​ to control the public spectrum and prohibits obscene or indecent content

● Self­regulation

○ To avoid problems, TV broadcasters self­regulated

● TV a political force in the 1960s: how counterculture emerged

○ 1954: Edward R. Murrow publicly challenged Sen. Joseph McCarthy:​ McCarthy was a politician who was accusing people left and right of being communist. This action is called “blacklisting”.

■ Here arose watchdog journalism​­ when the media holds politicians accountable to what they say and do.

○ 1960: Nixon vs. JFK debate.​ The first televised debate, JFK won based on looks but those who had only listened to the debates thought that Nixon won. ○ 1963:

■ Nation watched announcement of JFK assassination​ on TV

■ Dr. MLK Jr’s I have a Dream Speech​ @ Lincoln Memorial during the March on Washington

○ 1980s: MTV, Hairspray, VCRs, video games, the remote control (skip ads by channel surfing)

■ Public’s relationship with TV sets changed with:

● VCR​: time shifting and home video industry expands

● Video Games:​ tv is now an interactive device

● Narrowcasting:​ instead of a mass audience, tv began to target

niche audiences/markets.

● Cable channels:​ carved out niches and challenged the networks


● Digital TV (DTV):

○ Telecommunications act of 1996:​ helped encourage the transition but wasn’t completed until June 12, 2009.

■ Spectrums for public safety communications.

■ Space for wireless internet services

■ Multicasting: su​ bchannels

■ Datacasting:​ space for other signals like ads, emergency, and weather (TV guide on screen)

■ High­Def (HDTV) allowed for higher resolutions and larger aspect ratio ■ Multimedia creation: mu ​ ltiple formats on a single device

■ Allowed multiple messages to share a single channel.

■ Improved image quality

■ Content Sharing​: editing TV content on your computer & sharing it online ■ User Generated Content

● This Participatory culture​ wasn’t new, but more accessible.

(hate email vs hate mail)

Ora R Knopik Study Guide for TV and American Society

■ Social media: which is also profiting hugely from user generated content


● Convergence alters the relationship between existing technologies, industries, markets,genres and audiences. It’s a process, not an endpoint. 

● Media Convergence:​ “the flow of content across multiple media platforms” (including content created by the audience) Jenkins, 2006. There are three types:

1. Ownership Convergence:​ number of corporations that control the majority of US media has decreased. Legislation says these mergers are legal.

a. Today’s big 6:

i. Comcast:​ Number 1 cable company

ii. Disney

iii. News Corp

iv. Time Warne​r

v. Viacom

vi. CBS

b. Media companies can be Vertically (all stages of a business) or Horizontally (one company owns all types of media) integrated, or both

c. There are advantages and disadvantages to the oligopoly.

2. Content Convergence:​ Transmedia storytelling: stand alone stories told across media platforms, and cross­media promotion (publicity across different mediums). 3. Technological Convergence:​ Your phone is now a ....... everything a. Collective Intelligence

i. Pierre Levy: No one knows everything, everyone knows something, all knowledge resides in humanity:

b. Communities of Interest: voluntary and temporary, lead to mutual production, provide reciprocal exchange of knowledge.

Convergence is happening at the top and the bottom:

● Highly concentrated ownership: top of convergence forces (the big 6) ○ More political, social, and cultural influence

○ Stronger gatekeeping: what we can get on tv

○ Less competition through oligopoly

● Bottom of convergence forces (everyday people)

○ More access, lower production costs

○ Faster, mass distribution

○ More competition and diversity

○ Ways around gatekeepers.

Ora R Knopik Study Guide for TV and American Society

Functions and roles in the TV industry, the Graphic that connects all of the roles in productions (p 18)

Creative Team:

● Showrunner, Director, Screenwriter, Producer

Challenges in the TV industry:

● Producers have to regularly make new material.

● The production cycles are short.

Deficit financing​: networks pay licensing fees to production companies to air programs (but these are usually not enough to cover production costs, so production companies usually start in the hole when they make shows).

● Profit for production companies comes from syndication: t​ he sales of broadcasting rights to multiple channels. There are two types of syndications: 1) first run and 2) off network reruns

The networks are still the distributors/most powerful; they have a large amount of local and affiliated channels.  These are how networks choose where to place shows: (*these are very important definitions*)

● Block scheduling (stacking): ​back to back scheduling of similar shows ● Cross programming: e​ xtending a story arc between episodes of two different shows like when Timmy Turner and Jimmy Neutron shared a special.

● Counter programming: p​ rograms that might attract a different audience than the competition, especially when facing a hit show

● Challenge programming: a​ hit show is moved into the same time slot when a rival hit show plays

● Hammocking: ​placing a new or unpopular program in between popular ones ● Tentpoling: ​placing a popular program between two unpopular ones ● Hotswitching: ​eliminating ads between shows to avoid channel switching

Cable and satellite channels appeal to niche audiences because you can find unique shows.


● Broadcast stations

○ 1952­2009

■ 1)  VHF

Ora R Knopik Study Guide for TV and American Society

■ 2)  UHF (more affected by interference, created two tiers)

○ After 2009: Digitalization


● Owned and Operated (O&O)

● Network affiliated

● Non­network affiliated

Cable systems are protected by municipal franchise rights to an area: covers cable installation costs and prevents competition

● Cable must carry federal regulation​: says cable services must carry local broadcast programs.

● Retransmission consent: Broadcast stations can waive their Must Carry Protection to charge a subscription fee to cable

○ If a monetary amount is not agreed upon, station may not be carried


● 1970s: FCC passes anti­concentration measure

● 1980s: not as much concern about media ownership

● 1990s: Fin­Syn repealed by Telecommunications Act of 96

○ More anti­trust regulations lifted

HOW TO CREATE A HIT SHOW: there are formulas but nobody knows of sure. ● Pilot testing is speculative and inexact

● You must find balance between commercial appeal and creative content ● How to make your own program in the convergence age

○ Kickstarter

○ Youtube channels


● Spoiling Survivor: a collective intelligence experience

○ TV: mass communication to participatory medium and a TV producer’s response to participatory audiences: more complex narratives

○ Audience members wanted to know.

○ Fans called “professional spoilers”found out where it was filmed = went and interviewed people.

○ Fans discussed via the internet, moderators on the discussion boards.

Ora R Knopik Study Guide for TV and American Society

Viewer​: an individual

Audience​: categorical grouping

Four models of how audiences are represented (Dennis McQuail) hint: the representations increase in diversity over time.

1. Unitary Model 50s­80s: si ​ ngle mass audience representing general public 2. Pluralism model: ​diverse audience demands shape more diverse programs that somewhat overlap

3. The core­periphery model: mo ​ st audiences consume core channels, others on the periphery consume more diverse channels

4. Breakup pattern model: ​market is saturated, each channel/program serves a specific niche, no overlapping


● Then: An individual/group sends a message (program/show/announcement) through a channel to a large anonymous, heterogeneous population with almost no medium for feedback

● Now: TV is interactive: Digitalization and culture made TV participatory

TV producer’s reaction to participatory audiences is increasingly complex narratives ● Complex narratives were originally avoided by producers because programs were rerun on other networks and were therefore out of show order.

○ Additionally, uncertain features of shows meant not knowing when the show will end.

● Facilitations of complex narratives:

○ Technology ​(VCR, DVR), Internet forums

○ Industry​: Increased competition

○ Society and Culture:​ more engaged audiences, more diverse audiences, video games

● Definition of complex narratives: ​ multiple threads, non­linear narratives, audiences are expected to not just remember but fill in unspoken plot holes, some narratives even require the audience to work collaboratively (collective intelligence)

Exchanging Audiences (advertising)

Networks sell us (the audiences) to advertisers.

Ora R Knopik Study Guide for TV and American Society


● 1922: toll broadcasting:​ selling time on airwaves for commercials

● Single sponsorship ads emerged and later carried to TV

○ Brand recognition through TV was strong

○ Problem: less control over programs, scheduling (networks), cost of programs rises (for advertisers)

○ Magazine concept sponsorship 1950s: ​ 1­2 minute commercial spots throughout the program, advertisements must compete for attention.


● Tax­deductible business expense

COST PER THOUSAND (CPM): ​Advertising unit cost of reaching 1000 viewers ● Used to compare the cost effectiveness of different media vehicles

○ Media vehicle with the lowest cpm is generally the most efficient bc it req less money to reach 1,000 audience mems

● CPM=(cost of a media program ad) / (size of the media program’s audience) X 1000


● 80% of television programs contain product placement. Why?

○ Less intrusive than ads

○ Can’t be skipped l​ ike commercials

○ Cheaper ​for advertisers

○ Audience perceive it as celebrity endorsements

○ Adds realism ​to the show and products

○ Problem: companies relinquish creative control


● Hard sell​ (product knowledge) communicate hard info

● Soft sell​: appeals to emotions to build brand image.

● Anti­ADS​: explicitly go against traditional ads (parody established ads) ○ Address intelligent audiences, Critical to build brand image

■ We watched Ikea book­book in class

● Creating demand​: highlight problems in our lives and their product is the solution

Ora R Knopik Study Guide for TV and American Society


● Rating: (Households tuned into a given program) / (all households with tv) X 100 ● Share: (households tuned into a given program) / (all households tuned into TV at that time) X 100

○ Ratings are used to calculate the audience member in CPM (cost/audience) x 100

● Nielsen ​does the ratings in the US. They go to the media organizations (including social media) that sell media time, organizations that buy media time, and to advertisers. ○ Nielsen Media Research (how they get ratings):

■ Set top meters​: devices attached to homes to see what people watch ● Problems: 1)  doesn’t account for viewing parties. 2) Neilsen has

been accused of avoiding “bad” neighborhoods.

■ Diaries​: people document what they watch. They are collected during sweeps months: most important months in which tv producers use stunt castings ­celeb guest appearances­ t​ hat are used to boost ratings)

● Problems: 1) not an accurate population representation, 2) The

diaries are based on people’s first hand records and often

inaccurate, and 3) Social desirability bias comes into play (will not

admit to watching sex scandal, etc).

■ People meters​: device hooked to tv, it has settings for each person in the household.

● Problems: 1) Overlooks other devices people watch on, 2) People

walk out of the room with the TV on, 3) doesn’t account for

viewing parties, and 4) might skew the US population (bad


■ Portable people meter: ​Continuous tracking device that attaches to people’s belts and picks up signals from multiple media sources. It’s

personal in that it ties media consumption details with personal

demographic information

■ Social media​: Nielsen started tracking twitter, youtube, and recently


■ Regardless of problems, it’s still the industry standard, and a third party watches Nielsen.

● Video about ratings​: uses statistical sampling and pays households small stipend. Numbers typically represent total viewers. 1.0 = 1% of all viewers in the US tuned in. ○ Ages 18­24 is the most important age group for advertisers.

○ People use this for which shows to keep/cancel

○ Viewing habits are fragmenting with the inventions of netflix, dvr, etc

● Hulu and Netflix

○ Hulu is measured by ComScore, Nielsen, and Quantcast

○ Netflix doesn’t release viewership data.

Ora R Knopik Study Guide for TV and American Society


FCC ​regulates broadcasting 1)  to license the spectrum, 2) provide/incentives public good, and to protect copyright.

● FCC decides on whether to grant, renew or deny a license based on the PICAN Standard:​ if the station serves the public interest, convenience and necessity. ○ In the US, Public Interest is defined as:

■ that which interest the public

● Commercial broadcasters define their own best interests.

● Criticism of this model by FCC’s own chair Newton Minow.

● The FCC cannot censor content, and this is in order to protect free speech, however it does regulate:

○ Obscenity:​ sexual content appealing solely for prurient interest with no legit social value. Can’t be prosecuted for speech with obscene content. ○ Indecency:​ material that depicts/describes in terms patently offensive as measured by contemp comm standards for broadcast medium, sexual or excretory organs or activities

■ Safe Harbor​: 10 pm ­ 6 am, programs with adult content can air

without FCC penalties, material can be indecent but not obscene.

○ Profanity​: language so grossly offensive to the members of the public who actually hear it as to amount to a nuisance: “fuck, sex, explicit

discussion of sex.”  Networks often self­censor to avoid public outcry.

● FCC is reactive: it looks at complaints that people file but is not preventive. ● Cable tv not regulated for indecency and profanity: cable is primarily a transmission service and the FCC is unsure of their ability to regulate cable content.

Public Broadcasting System (PBS)

● ETV frequencies granted in the 1950s to universities

Public Access Television

● FCC req that cable systems provide channels in support of noncommercial programming for 3 purposes: PEG

○ P​ublic access, E​ducational programming, & G​overnmental service


● You can qualify for copyright as soon as you write/record it if it’s original work ● Protects creator's’ ability to: reproduce the work, distribute copies, perform it publicly ● Good for the life of the individual author + 70 years

● Public domain: copyright does expire, but fair use​ allows people to use content under these conditions:

○ Purpose and character of the use

Ora R Knopik Study Guide for TV and American Society

○ Nature of the copyrighted work

○ The effect upon work’s value

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