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What are the practices, politics, and possibilities of digital media culture?

 

ARCMedia is the home of new innovative research on emerging practices, politics, and potentialities of digital media culture.

The aim of our research and collaborations is to generate new work on digital platforms and politics from Netflix to Instagram, Twitter and TikTok. Our specific expertise is in the following areas: bingewatching and TV cultures in the streaming era; consent culture and hashtag activism; online sexual harassment and image-based abuse; boredom and networked media; affect and the attention economy.

We seek to address the formative structures of power, affect, and attention that are taking shape through the contemporary mediascape, and assess the creative potentialities of both analogue and digital technologies and practices as they continue to evolve.

Attention and Affect Ecologies of Contemporary Media

This research strand focuses on the attention and affect ecologies of 24/7 media cultures. In particular, it focuses on what Jonathan Crary has described as the ‘rhythms, speeds, and formats of accelerated and intensified consumption’ and explores how they are ‘reshaping experience and perception’ (Crary 2013: 39).

 

The research projects in this strand include the following: an examination of how video-on-demand culture and streaming services such as Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hulu reconfigure notions of the audience and rethink the medium of television; a study of the way that boredom is constructed, managed, and controlled in the ‘attention economy’ of contemporary media; and an exploration of seriality and long-form true crime and the operations of spectatorship associated with the so-called Netflix effect.

Creative and Experimental Digital Practice

Researchers and practitioners associated with this thematic strand focus on the exploration of contemporary and emerging digital practices. Their work explores pathways between the creative and the experimental, and spans media contexts including film, video, installations, sound, digital games, physical computing, generative art, and other new media environments.

 

Emphasising the critical and productive connections between theory and practice, contributors to this thematic strand develop approaches that consider new directions of digital practice. Critically rethinking the contours, boundaries, and intersections of scholarship and art-making, their focus is on continuities, disruptions, and new opportunities that arise as previous, analog creative modes feed into the digital. 

East Road, Cambridge
Cambridgeshire, CB1 1PT.

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©2020 ARU Research Centre in Media & Culture