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Please note all Google documents require RMIT student email to access.
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Based on the workshop with groups today. Here is some additional clarity for the group analysis blog entries and essay.
Your essay addresses the question/s:
This essay will focus on the question What can we do with online video? The following secondary questions can be used to support this inquiry: What you have learnt about authoring, publishing and distributing online video. What issues did you encounter? Was it what you expected? What did you like about it? What did you dislike?
Your analysis entries are a transition towards the essay. Consider this blogging as a type of informal (brain dump) for the group – where you get your thinking articulated as a starting point towards the more formal essay. Even though the word count is 250-500 you can write beyond this just to get your ideas out. Your assessor is not looking at the quality of the writing in your blog entries, they are more interested in seeing you start to articulate what happened with your research.
In your evidence section contextualise the specific online video practice you chose to do the case study on (link to your case study) then describe the decisions you made as a group with your video production (the making of a comparable video).
Your assessors want to know about the processes you went through to collaboratively produce your video. Talk about the pre-production, production, post-production processes. What issues emerged in the making process? What changes did you have to make?
Remember the video making is part of your groups’ research into understanding what you can do with online video. Your evidence will describe the journey you took to make the video (over the time it took to complete the work, 1-4 weeks – now from week 9-12 for some groups).
From your research (your case study and video production), you will decide as a group on a focus for your critique. In the evaluation section your assessor wants to see what you have learnt in regards to how your video production has extended your understanding of the practice you examined in the case study. How has the making process informed your understanding of what you can do with online video in this particular context?
Your assessors are interested in what you have discovered through your research and what you learnt about authoring, publishing and distributing online video (and more broadly networked media).
For example, how does a particular service like Instagram, Facebook and YouTube effect the way video is produced? What are the constraints? What are the affordances?
These articles on Aljazeeras use of facebook videos will be useful for all the groups in regards to thinking about how this news organisation is working with the affordances of Facebook in regards to authoring, publishing and distributing online videos.
How AJ+ reaches 600% of its audience on Facebook
5 August 2015
This blog entry is for all the workshops (but with a specific focus on the Tuesday workshops who have missed out due to the ANZAC holiday).
Working backwards from the upcoming group essay. I have provided notes on this in the week 8 tutorial available here on the blog.
Looking ahead and back as a recap:
Week 7 – Online video blog entry based on video lecture and readings (it should be done and added to your group assessment doc by the end of week 8).
With Medium most group members have signed up to this blogging service and created a publication that you all can edit into. As a collaboration you can decide how you collectively write up blog entries. My suggestion is to work on sections individually in medium then get one group member to collate the shared effort into one post and add the link to that post to your group assessment g-doc.
Week 8 Case study – Groups are to chose an example of online video practice to examine as their case study. In The Friday workshop many groups found that one video was usually in most cases part of larger body of practice produced by an individual or group. This meant their case study and close reading in the first instance would start from looking at one specific work and extend to the larger body of practice, and then to the service it is published on. Groups focused on videos on Instagram, facebook and YouTube with the option also to look at other services.
We workshopped their choices against the case study questions to test how they worked in relation to this analysis and looked at using this example of online video practice to make video content in weeks 9 and 10.
Remembering that the focus is on the form of the video and its relation to the affordances of the services it is published in – rather than the quality of what is made in relation to the topic or content. In other words your group is making content to get an extended understanding on authoring, publishing and distributing online video. The making of content extends the case study analysis from just looking at a practice without getting your hands dirty. Therefore, as a starting point to select the online video practice you will examine – look for examples of practice that you think make good use of the affordances of the service they are published on.
Week 9 -10 Video making. In week 9 your group will present their case study to others in the workshop. Refer to the notes on this presentation. The other half of the workshop will focus on determining with your teacher how much video content will need to be made. The agreed quantity will be documented in your group assessment g-doc. The quantity of video content to be made will varying depending on the context of the online video practice you analysed in your case study. (See the week 8 workshop notes for more on this…)
Week 11-12 – Will focus on three analysis blog entries that reflect on the case study and the making of content as a transition to the essay which will be drafted and workshopped in week 12. The task 2 group essay will follow the same format at the individual task 1 essay.
(In the week 9 workshop) Each group will informally present their case study within a 5 minute timeframe. The main aim of this presentation is to share the findings with other groups in each workshop – along with providing your teachers an insight into your research for assessment.
To help you focus your presentation I suggest groups work from these selected case study questions:
Describe what ‘affordance’ refers to conceptually in this context?
What is a ‘constraint’ within the context of the affordance reading?
Online video (context)
Why have you chosen this online video work? What influenced your decision?
What is the service that the online video is published on?
Provide an overview of this service in relation to what it affords authors to do with online video?
In regards to Norman’s (1988) concept of ‘affordances’ and ‘constraints’ in this chapter Ritchie refers to affordances and constraints in relation to what are described as ‘interactive narratives’.
Affordances and constraints: An affordance is both the perceived and actual properties of a system or object that determine how it may possibly be used. Conversely a constraint is the actual and perceived attributes of an object or system that limits its possible uses. There are four types of constraints: physical, semantic, cultural and logical.
Ritchie, J. ‘The Affordances and Constraints of Mobile Locative Media’ In Hjorth, L., J. Burgess and I. Richardson (eds) Studying Mobile Media: Cultural Technologies, Mobile Communication, and the iPhone, New York: Routledge. pp. 53-67.
Understanding the concept of ‘affordances’ is complex due to the different uses of the term in varying contexts.
The wikipedia overview although not necessarily an authoritative reference point provides an insight into the way Norman uses the concept differently in relation to the field of interaction and user experience design.
Gibson’s use of the concept within the field of cognitive psychology and focuses on potential actions. From wikipedia:
He defined affordances as all “action possibilities” latent in the environment, objectively measurable and independent of the individual’s ability to recognize them, but always in relation to agents and therefore dependent on their capabilities. For instance, a set of steps which rises four feet high does not afford the act of climbing if the actor is a crawling infant.
While Norman takes this another step in relation to interaction and user experience design. In Normans use of affordances the person brings to an object prior knowledge and has particular goals. In connection with the notion of design it is about the relationship that the user can have with the object, which is referred to by Norman as ‘perceived affordances’. From wikipedia:
It makes the concept dependent not only on the physical capabilities of an actor, but also the actor’s goals, plans, values, beliefs, and past experiences. If an actor steps into a room with an armchair and a softball, Gibson’s original definition of affordances allows that the actor may throw the chair and sit on the ball, because this is objectively possible. Norman’s definition of (perceived) affordances captures the likelihood that the actor will sit on the armchair and throw the softball. Effectively, Norman’s affordances “suggest” how an object may be interacted with. For example, the size and shape of a softball obviously fit nicely in the average human hand, and its density and texture make it perfect for throwing. The user may also bring past experiences to bear with similar objects (baseballs, perhaps) when evaluating a new affordance.
In our experiments we focus on online video practices and explore what social media services afford the online media practitioner. We bring to that exploration preconceived ideas about how video should be used to create fiction and nonfiction video works. What we are exploring through both the evaluation of theory and a practice-led investigation (producing video in the service being analysed) – is how video can be used to communicate in relation to making the most of what each service has to offer this type of online media practice. In addition to this we are making new discoveries in relation to how the affordances of video, computers and the network may alter a videographic practice.
Bill Gaver in the article ‘Technological Affordances’ in the design field makes a useful point in regards to working with different technologies. Gaver suggests that affordances are examined (quote) “as a way of focusing on the strengths and weaknesses of technologies with respect to the possibilities they offer the people that might use them.” (p.79). This argument can be used within the context of online media practice in regards to media production. How can we work differently with video within the constraints and affordances of the varying services online?
Ultimately we are interested in what we can do with video, computers and the network?
Norman, D 1998, The design of everyday things, Basic Book, New York.
Norman, D 1999, Affordance, conventions and design (Part 2), Nielsen Norman
Group, viewed April 2012,
Gaver B 1991, ‘Technology Affordances’, Proceeding CHI ’91 Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, pp 79-84.
Additional text available in the Library:
Gibson, J 1979 The Ecological Approach to Visual Perception Houghton Mifflin, Boston.