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YouTube: Online Video and Participatory Culture 1st Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0745644790
ISBN-10: 0745644791
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Editorial Reviews


"Jean Burgess and Joshua Green insightfully weave together an engaging and much-needed cultural narrative of the astonishing new phenomenon that is YouTube with an incisive critique of its rapidly-mythologised yet deeply uncertain transformative potential."
Sonia Livingstone, London School of Economics and Political Science

"This book is an important and timely contribution to the literature on participatory culture and media. The analyses provide empirical bases for understanding the diversity of YouTube users' practices and sophisticated theoretical consideration of the social, cultural, political, historical and economic contexts in which these practices are situated and which they so often disrupt."
Nancy Baym, University of Kansas

From the Back Cover

YouTube is one of the most well-known and widely discussed sites of participatory media in the contemporary online environment, and it is the first genuinely mass-popular platform for user-created video. In this timely and comprehensive introduction to how YouTube is being used and why it matters, Burgess and Green discuss the ways that it relates to wider transformations in culture, society and the economy.
The book critically examines the public debates surrounding the site, demonstrating how it is central to struggles for authority and control in the new media environment. Drawing on a range of theoretical sources and empirical research, the authors discuss how YouTube is being used by the media industries, by audiences and amateur producers, and by particular communities of interest, and the ways in which these uses challenge existing ideas about cultural ‘production’ and ‘consumption’.
Rich with both concrete examples and featuring specially commissioned chapters by Henry Jenkins and John Hartley, the book is essential reading for anyone interested in the contemporary and future implications of online media. It will be particularly valuable for students and scholars in media, communication and cultural studies.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 140 pages
  • Publisher: Polity; 1 edition (May 4, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0745644791
  • ISBN-13: 978-0745644790
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 0.6 x 8.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #192,288 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Associate Professor Jean Burgess is Deputy Director of the Australian Research Centre (ARC) Centre of Excellence for Creative Industries & Innovation (CCI) and a Principal Research Fellow in the Creative Industries Faculty at Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia. She researches, teaches and publishes on the politics and possibilities of user-created content and online social networks.

Burgess is the co-author of the first research monograph on YouTube - YouTube: Online Video and Participatory Culture (Polity Press, 2009), which has subsequently been translated into Polish, Portuguese and Italian.

Her current research focuses on methodological innovation in the context of the changing media ecology, and in particular on the development of computational methods for social media research in media and communication studies.

Burgess has developed several applied research partnerships with cultural institutions and community-based organizations, focusing on the uses of co-creative media such as digital storytelling for cultural participation, advocacy and engagement.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Finally, a book about YouTube that shows a clear understanding of the web site's potential for social networking. The authors have really done their homework (or research) well and picked up on things that other writers have missed. For example, they noticed that YouTubers often extend their social interaction to other sites like Stickam. And they caught the controversy over the Partner program which served to divide the community.

I'm very invested in the YouTube community so I found it fascinating to read the observations of social scientists on this cultural phenomenon. The authors have done an excellent job of explicating the significance of YouTube as a creative community and cultural force.

In summary, this book is quite impressive. As an active participant on YouTube I can attest to its accuracy. I even found some insight into certain aspects of the online world through phrases like "attention economy". The YouTube community is certainly the biggest group of attention whores you'd ever meet and it is important to realize how much of their creative endeavors and drama is a fight for attention in a media economy driven by attention.
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Format: Paperback
Instant, accessible video has revolutionized the world. "YouTube: Digital Media and Society Series" discusses the impact that the video website has had on society by making a wide variety of videos available for the public's perusal. Advertisers have flocked to the sight, pop culture revolutions have been fueled by it, social crusades have been forwarded using it. The authors, both experts in media studies and creativity and innovation, provide a scholarly look at YouTube and why it has come to dominate the internet as it has today, making "YouTube" a powerful addition to any internet studies collection.
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Burgess, Jean and Joshua Gree. YouTube: Digitial Media and Society Series. Polity Press,
2009, 172 pages.

I am reviewing this work for its own sake, and also including comments concerning the applicability of the book for discussions in church (and other non-profit organizations).

This concise and focused book in the Digital Media and Society Series [...] brings the tools of sociology and critical theory to bear on the video-sharing phenomenon YouTube, a site co-created, as Burgess points out, by YouTube Inc., "users who upload content to the site, and audiences who engage that content."[1] The authors conduct their research of YouTube by examining trends in video content that was most favorited, most viewed, most discussed, and most responded during six days of samples in the fall of 2007. Their method of interpretation is an interesting admixture of literary theory, sociological analysis, critical theory, and media studies.[2]

Perhaps the most significant change in my thinking after reading the book is to stop thinking of YouTube as just one thing. Instead, I now see how the site as a platform performs a variety of functions, some of which are especially applicable for congregational mission and ministry. YouTube's status as a meta business--the "new category of business that enhances the value of information developed elsewhere and thus benefits the original creators of that information"[3]--is the largest contributing factor in this regard.

1) Cultural archive: Burgess writes, "It is possible to exhaust your own capacity for nostalgia before exhausting the possibilities of the vintage material available on YouTube already...
Read more ›
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I purchased this book for assistance with a college paper for YouTube. I found this book to be immensely helpful. It is interesting to note that they did not look so much at social aspects so much as a more hard-science collaborative perspective, however there are endless unique points made with this read that are unbiased, deductive in nature, and involve all elements of YouTube.

The articulation is quite dense and heavy, but uniquely specific. I absolutely recommend this book to anyone that would like a serious take on insight into YouTube and how its structure works together in dualistic natures.
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