Everyday Media

An everyday blog about media by everyday blogger Louise Alice Wilson.

Tag: The People Formerly Known As The Audience

Imitation Is The Sincerest Form Of Flattery

Thinking about audience interactivity and ideas of audience consumption and creation has got me thinking, when have I engaged with media, to create something new? These are the things I could think of:

  • My Art Blog: On my art blog I often find imagery online, or my own imagery, that was not initially intended as ‘art’ or to be read a certain way. But through posting it to my blog, I  recontextualise that image, contrasting and comparing it to the surrounding imagery, often create new interpretations and ways of reading and being inspired by images.
  • My Music: The music that I create is distinctly mine in that I write it about my life, my experiences, my perspective, my environment etc. but like all media it is influenced by the countless amounts of media that have come before it. The main inspirations for my work are slick neo-soul, R&B, funk, electronic and old school african grooves, without this former media mine would not exist, or atlas certainly not be the same. Our consumption of other media is filtered into our own creations, often subconsciously, but this is still fitting within this model of audience interactivity.
  • My Photography: Photography has been a slowly developing hobby of mine. Honing my work has required years and years of googling ‘how to take good artist photos in dim light’ and comparing my images to the images of my influences, taking note of differences, and assessing where I can improve. I also keep a folder of imagery that I use for inspiration and guidance, a vibes folder through which I can re-create or be re-inspired by the imagery that gives me life.

Creativity as a mindset is sometimes hard to maintain, for some it’s forever there, for others you can feel creatively dead, or creatively drained at points throughout your life. This is why consumption of others work, art, media etc. has always and will always be a thing. As humans we have forever taken inspiration, created and re-created, building for hundreds of thousands of years upon the work of the humans coming before us, or even the animals around us, or the earth around us.

New technology is a catalyst for mass re-creation, mass re-contextualisation and mass-inspiration.  It is this opportunity that has led viewers, to become creators, enabling humans to evolve further along our own timeline of creativity, further pushing the boundaries, further enhancing ‘the human experience’ and further documenting it, through deeper and deeper layers of meaning and reference.

Catch you later,

Louise Alice Wilson

The People Formerly Known As The Audience

I like this idea: the people formerly known as the audience.

“The people formerly known as the audience are those who were on the receiving end of a media system that ran one way, in a broadcasting pattern, with high entry fees and a few firms competing to speak very loudly while the rest of the population listened in isolation from one another— and who today are not in a situation like that at all.” (Jay Rosen, 2006)

Within Jay Rosen’s blog “PressThink” he talks about the shifting of the audience, he states that old forms of media were once exclusive, while the new forms of media replacing them open themselves up to the audience, for example:

  • Printing Presses > Blogs
  • Radio Stations > Podcasting
  • Video Production (used to be an expensive process) > Video Production (is now relatively cheap)
  • The News > Multiple Online News Outlets
  • Centralised Media System (Vertical Flow) > Citizen to Citizen (Horizontal Flow)

Removing the broadcast model, to me, is only a positive thing. Although ‘big media’ has produced countless literary, tv and filmic classics, with ‘big’ comes restrictions. Large companies are often influenced by: politics, money, power, maintaining the status quo, selling and company hierarchy. When makers are bound by such influences its often hard to express ones art in its purest sense, a lot of companies only regarding ‘art’ worthy if it fits within such boundaries and is guaranteed to turn a decent profit. Multiple voices allow for the creation of ‘big’ as well as ‘little’ media, opening the media landscape up to endless streams of creators and creativity, which only adds to the diversity of the media landscape.

Jay Rosen believes that while this new way of approaching media is great, he still agrees that the pleasures of ‘Big Media’ are still real, ” we are still perfectly content to listen to our radios while driving, sit passively in the darkness of the local multiplex, watch TV while motionless and glassy-eyed in bed, and read silently to ourselves”. However, users are no longer ‘on big media’s clock’, users now decide when/where/how/why the point of engagement will be, forcing media to become more informed and engaged in order to reach users.

Delusional ideas such as mass audiences, ‘broadcasting’ and equating viewers to ‘eyeballs’ are on the way out, and the people formerly known as the audience are on the way in. I’m excited to see where this goes but I known it’s gonna be good.


Catch you later,

Louise Alice Wilson



Rosen. J (2006) Press Think: The people formerly known as the audience. Accessed via: http://archive.pressthink.org/2006/06/27/ppl_frmr.html

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