Global gaming networks are heterogenous collectives of localized practices, not unified commercial products. Shifting the analysis of digital games to local specificities that build and perform the global and general, Gaming Rhythms employs ethnographic work conducted in Venezuela and Australia to account for the material experiences of actual game players.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Abstract - Open Source Culture

Open Source Culture: Participatory Culture and the Digital Divide

Henry Jenkins’ recent publications on convergence have focused on the way that the active audience, equipped with the productive and distributive tools of digital technology might transform the waning public sphere in the USA, at the expense of effectively excluding discussion of the transnational and uneven practices of cultural convergence. However, in his work the stakes of convergence culture are clearly established: empowered consumers (potentially) have an active role in transforming – and democratizing – governments and corporations. This article will examine what this emergent politicized form of consumption/production means in the context of the unevenness of global participation in the information economy.

By focusing on the tactics of participation that are deployed in the global ‘South’ through a case study of media practices and consumption in Venezuela this article will demonstrate what is at stake in the shift to a media paradigm of convergence. In particular I will focus on the role that media piracy plays in providing a heterogeneous space of participation outside the news and telecommunications media, which have come under increasingly strict government controls since Hugo Chávez’s 2006 re-election.

To address this precarious participation in global media production, enabled through illegal practices that are disciplined by both local and global forces, I will turn to the work of Néstor García Canclini and George Yúdice on the uneven relationship between consumption and citizenship in order to contest dominant dialogues of piracy. Finally the article will re-examine piracy in the context of open source, in order to argue that to extend the consumer/citizen empowerment of convergence globally the notion of open source must be extended to include hardware, and education, as well as software.

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About Me

This blog started as a PhD blog, for my project 'Global Rhythms: Video games and the Transformation of Play'. It finally become a book. This is a "historic" record of the trials a tribulations.