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This section, started in June 2006, is meant as an introduction on how peer to peer processes are affecting the media world, broadly conceived.

(Items from the P2P Encyclopedia are not fully ported; done from A TO D, i.e. first two columns)

Please also check our other section on Open Music Concepts.

Inspired by the work of Dana Klisanin, the P2P Foundation favors the development of Evolutionary Guidance Media which posits the pairing of compassionate-seeing/action with that of Cyberception, or humankind’s rapidly advancing technological abilities, resulting in Transception, [1]

The P2P Foundation supports the work of

  • Transmission, a network of online video distribution projects for social change activists.
  • the Open Video Alliance.
  • Want to make your own 'p2p' documentary? See: Docummunity: the first fully interactive collaborative documentary site that is totally geared to enable groups of users to collaborate together on one communal documentary [2]

Good summary by Franz Nahrada of why digital media are responsible for a major cultural shift.

Thesis: The digital medium is different from any medium that existed before; it is wholistic in its nature and vigourosly pushing into obsolescence any form of content that does not comply with this wholistic nature.

  • You can tell any story using more than one medium; the textual begets the visual, the visual begets the acoustic and so on. Thus every story is a universe of mutual interpretations.
  • There is no copy which cannot become a new original. Content can be multiplied and modified/mirrored algorithmically into eternity. Thus every content is potentially unvaluable.
  • There is no content that has enough context; content can be associated indefinitely and so the content of the digital medium is the continuum
  • There is increasingly no physical boundary to partcipate in the reception or production of digitised content. So anybody from any place at any time can potentially influence any content.

There four characteristics are more fully elaborated here: [3]

What P2P Media Activists Need to Know



  • Web development
  • Databases and CRM management
  • Coding, programming
  • Software to manage mobile campaigns, listening dashboards, enhanced voter files
  • Collaboration tools
  • Open source software promotion
  • Video/audio/graphics production
  • Web optimization/SEO
  • Software training
Public Messaging

  • Framing, positioning
  • Creating a narrative
  • Journalism/producing copy
  • Interacting with mainstream press/political class/A list bloggers
  • Cognitive linguistics/Lakoff
  • Strategic communications
  • Polling
  • Focus groups
  • Micro targeting
Digital Strategy

  • Writing for email/web
  • Online content strategy
  • Blogger relations, blogging culture
  • Social media /mobile campaigning strategy
  • Integration of tools, online/offline
  • Engagement politics
  • Ladders of engagement
  • Online advertising/message testing
  • Online community management
  • Small dollar fundraising

  • Media reform
  • Net neutrality, micro radio licensing, public access to bandwidth, addressing digital divide
  • Identity politics media campaigns on behalf of marginalized groups
  • Promotion of favored voices (WMC)
  • Support for better press/Pro-publica/opposition to Fox/monopolies
  • Capacity for video/audio production


  1. Criticism of Facebook [4]
  2. Criticism of Google [5]

Gene Youngblood on the Internet and the Crisis of Social Control

An absolutely brilliant essay on creating an alternative society through internet socialisation and cooperation, but which tackles the subjective changes that need to take place. We may consider in some ways as to be the implicit media theory behind the work of the P2P Foundation.



Excerpted at: Radical Change Presupposes Radical Will‎‎


Statistical Citations

The ubiquity of the internet: in 2007, 97% of all telecommunications information was exchanged online, compared to one per cent in 1993.

- Matthew Champion [6]

Between the dawn of civilisation and 2003, five exabytes of information were created. In the last two days, five exabytes of information have been created, and that rate is accelerating.

- Eric Schmidt, Google [7]

Short Citations

It is of the nature of idea to be communicated: written, spoken, done. The idea is like grass. It craves light, like crowds, thrives on crossbreeding, grows better for being stepped on.

-Ursula K. Le Guin, The Dispossessed, 1974

In the 21st century power no longer comes from the barrel of a gun. It comes from the blocking of a message.

- Loz Kaye [8]

"Don't hate the media. Become the media."

- Jello Biafra

Print media, including internet media, should not be looked at as a content production industry, but rather, as a lobby selection industry, which balances production subsidies with reader interest. In this manner it is analogous to the legislative economy which balances subsidies from political lobbies with electoral credulity.

- Julian Assange [9]

The Internet has democratized the means of self-expression, but it has not democratized the rewards of self-expression.

- Adam Kirsch [10]

Literacy means being able to consume and produce the media forms of the day. The default media form has shifted from the essay to the multimedia collage.

- Jason Ohler [11]

“Audiences should be eliminated entirely.”

- (Kaprow 1996, 713)

“We have three different ways of reaching our audience and interacting with our audience; that's broadcast, digital and social – and they are equally important.”

- (Martin Jönsson, deputy director of Swedish Radio, 2013)

Long Quotes

"Publication is not the production of books but the production of a public for whom those books have meaning. There is no pre-existing public. The public is created through deliberate, willful acts: the circulation of texts, discussions and gatherings in physical space, and the maintenance of a related digital commons. These construct a common space of conversation, a public space, which beckons a public into being. This is publication in its fullest sense."

- castillo/corrales - Section 7 books [12]

“Every time a new consumer joins this media landscape, a new producer joins as well because the same equipment – phones, computers – lets you consume and produce. It is as if when you bought a book, they threw in the printing press for free.”

- (Shirky 2005)

“The people formerly known as the audience are those who were on the receiving end of a media system that run 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.”

- (Rosen 2008, 163)

“The history of civilization is a story of evolution in our ability to build complex ‘multicellular minds.‘ Speech allowed us to communicate and coordinate. Writing allowed that coordination to span time and space. Twentieth century mass communications allowed shared information and culture to blanket the world. In the 21st century, memes spread mind to mind in nearly real time. “

- Tim O'Reilly, 2012 [13]

John Boik: Engage Global, Test Local, Spread Viral

"No matter how promising the design of a new system might be, it would be unreasonable to expect that a nation would abruptly drop an existing system in favor of a new one. Nevertheless, a viable, even attractive strategy exists by which new systems could be successfully researched, developed, tested, and implemented. I call it engage global, test local, spread viral.

Engage global means to engage the global academic community and technical sector, in partnership with other segments of society, in a well-defined R&D program aimed at computer simulation and scientific field testing of new systems and benchmarking of results. In this way, the most profound insights of science can be brought into play.

Test local means to scientifically test new designs at the local (e.g., city or community) level, using volunteers (individuals, businesses, non-profits, etc.) organized as civic clubs. This approach allows testing by relatively small teams, at relatively low cost and risk, in coexistence with existing systems, and without legislative action.

Spread viral means that if a system shows clear benefits in one location (elimination of poverty, for example, more meaningful jobs, or less crime) it would likely spread horizontally, even virally, to other local areas. This approach would create a global network of communities and cities that cooperate in trade, education, the setup of new systems, and other matters. Over time, its impact on all segments of society would grow.

Cities, big and small, are the legs upon which all national systems rest. Already cities and their communities are hubs for innovation. With some further encouragement and support, and the right tools and programs, they could become more resilient and robust, and bigger heroes in the coming great transition." (

On a Remediated world

We must completely abandon the notion that there is a real and a virtual world, as if the two were opposed. Instead, we must look at how new media is layering over existing spaces, thus reorganizing them. Graham is building on the notion of Bolter and Grusin; remediation. It is constituted (the virtual) on top of our real world. Remediation is taking place constantly. Remediation of painting, film and television, of cities, houses and streets. The old notion of holographic pods, parallel worlds, cyberspace, does not exist. We are far from it."

- Stephen Graham [14]

Against communication monopolies

"A monopoly on the means of communication may define a ruling elite more precisely than the celebrated Marxian formula of `monopoly in the means of production.' Since man extends his nervous system though channels of communication like the written word, the telephone, radio, etc., he who controls these media controls part of the nervous system of every member of society. The contents of these media become part of the contents of every individual's brain."

— Robert Anton Wilson

The real business of publishing

The huge opportunity for book publishers is to get unstuck. You're not in the printing business. The life and death of trees is not your concern. You're in the business of leveraging the big ideas authors have. There are a hundred ways to do that, yet book publishers obsess about just one or two of them.

- Seth Godin [15]

A true democracy needs symmetrical media

"We must understand how the dominant organizing principle our national communications infrastructure shapes and determines our politics. If we want a truly democratic politics, based on the notions of equality with justice and fairness for all, based upon truly symmetrical relationships, we will have to have a communications paradigm that supports that goal."

- Extreme Democracy [16]

Media of Flow

The value in media is no longer in sources but in flows; when we collaborate in sharing our cognitive surplus, it creates value that doesn't exist when we operate in isolation.

- Clay Shirky [17]

Algorithmic Authority

Algorithmic authority is the decision to regard as authoritative an unmanaged process of extracting value from diverse, untrustworthy sources, without any human standing beside the result saying “Trust this because you trust me.” This model of authority differs from personal or institutional authority. … Algorithmic authority handles the “Garbage In, Garbage Out” problem by accepting the garbage as an input, rather than trying to clean the data first; it provides the output to the end user without any human supervisor checking it at the penultimate step; and these processes are eroding the previous institutional monopoly on the kind of authority we are used to in a number of public spheres, including the sphere of news.

- Clay Shirky [18]

Losing our bodily inhibitions

"In a conflict between bulls, one of them retreats and violence and death are unnecessary. But because of what McLuhan termed "the media extensions of man," the evolutionary system of inhibition expressed in the body and its forms of body language is short-circuited. Consider the fact that if we bump into someone around the corner, we back off and courteously excuse ourselves. But if someone cuts in front of us on the highway in an automobile, we shout out our obscenities in a steel-encased rage. We lose the system of checks and balances expressed in the physical body with its biological systems for dealing with and containing aggression. Consider again how people on talk radio will become enraged over the day's news, or how people who live in the cyberspace of electronic bulletin boards will "go up in flames." There are no bodies in these modes of communication, so as we shift to "out-of-body forms of projection" into cyberspace networks, it is not surprising that the astral plane takes us over as we become possessed by those noetic parasites that older cultures liked to call demons."

= William Irwin Thompson [19]

Key Resources

  1. A Global Map of Alternative Media, compiled by the Alternative Media Global Project
  2. Video WTF is a collaboratively moderated place to ask and answer any question about video cameras, editing, production, publishing, promotion, etc.
  3. Social Media Glossary: 100 keywords
  4. Robin Good's mindmap overview of News Curation Tools for the Internet

Key Articles

"A reconciliation of oral myth with literate reason will be the hallmark of a new epistemic settlement. The ordered path of technological evolution toward higher states of “inclusive consciousness” and “mythic integration,” along the lines of what McLuhan had envisioned, would be open once again".

See also:

  1. David de Ugarte: Blogging as Distributed Activity
  2. Juan Urrutia: Individuation in the Blogosphere
  3. David Weinberger: Objectivity without Transparency is Arrogance
  4. The New News Ecology. By Jeff Jarvis.
  5. Ethan Zuckerman on the Dangers of Homophily
  6. Guide to Citizen Journalism. Report by Chris Willis and Shayne Bowman, with videos.


  1. What's the difference between Internet TV and IP-TV?
  2. Cory Doctorow: Three Reasons to Give Your Books Away for Free
  3. Key Essay: Unevenly Distributed: Production Models for the 21st Century.Mark Pesce
  4. Sasaki, D. (2008). An Introductory Guide to Global Citizen Media. from
  5. Essay: Television 2.0: YouTube and the Emergence of Homecasting. José van Dijck


  1. Overview of alternative media, at

P2P Media and Infrastructure Theory

Key Blogs

The must-follow blog is from Dr. Michael Strangelove:

  1. Watching YouTube


  1. Open Media Review: monitoring the best of what open media have to offer
  2. Media Shift: tracks how new media -- from weblogs to podcasts to citizen journalism -- are changing society and culture.

Selection from Valentin Spirik:

  1. The CamcorderInfo Blog is "All About Shooting, Editing and Polishing Your Videos" and has a notable Ethics Policy.
  2. Self-Reliant Filmmaking "is what makes a filmmaker independent"
  3. the Workbook Project is "a social open source experiment for content creators"
  4. CinemaTech is about "Digital cinema, democratization, and other trends remaking the movies"
  5. NewTeeVee focuses on the more mainstream aspects of the online video evolution.
  6. HD For Indies is about "High Definition Video for Independent Filmmakers"
  7. BlenderNation brings "Fresh Blender News, Every Day"


  1. 100 Best Blogs for New Media Students: excellent selection

Key Books

  1. Network Propaganda – Manipulation, Misinformation, and Radicalisation in American Politics. By Yochai Benkler et al.
  2. Gatewatching: Collaborative Online News Production. Axel Bruns.
  3. Convergence Culture. Henry Jenkins.
  4. Fan Fiction and Fan Communities in the Age of the Internet
  5. The Video Vortex Reader: responses to youtube. Edited by Geert Lovink and sabine niederer. Institute of Network Cultures, Amsterdam 2008 [24]
  6. Bloggers on the Bus: How the Internet Changed Politics and the Press. by Eric Boehlert. Free Press, 280 pp.,
  7. And Then There's This: How Stories Live and Die in Viral Culture. by Bill Wasik. Viking, 202 pp.,
  8. Political Turbulence: How Social Media Shape Collective Action. by Helen Margetts, Peter John, Scott Hale and Taha Yasseri. Princeton University Press, 2016



  1. Sue Robinson. “Someone’s gotta be in control here.” The Institutionalization_of_Online_News_and_the_Creation_of_a_Shared_Journalistic_Authority. 2007 [26]: study of participatory journalism
  2. Berkman Center Report 2008: State of Digital Media [27]

Historical background:

Key Podcasts on P2P Media Developments

  1. Dan Gillmor on Grassroots Journalism
  2. Interview with Jeff Jarvis on the Loss of Control by the Media
  3. James Boyle on Re-Inventing the Gatekeeper

Key Tools

* Keith Parkins recommends Bandcamp and Leanpub as best of class services for self-produced musicians and self-published writers respectively.

Key Webcasts on P2P Media Developments

A video about the open media movement


  1. Mark Pesce on the Digital Media Revolution
  2. Peter Buckingham on the Digital Media Revolution
  3. Are Netlabels Long Tail Niches or the Blueprint for the Future
  4. Beyond Broadcasting Summary Video
  5. Carlos Garcia on Scrapblogging


  1. David Denby on the Future Movies
  2. Democratization of the Moving Image

Media Commons Issues

  1. Mark Cooper on Public Airwaves as a Common Asset
  2. Martin Cooper on a Spectrum Policy for the 21st Century
  3. Open Spectrum Panel

Copyright Issues

  1. IP Rights and Revenue Models for Public Communications
  2. JD Lessica on the Future of Darknets
  3. John Perry Barlow Debates Movie Filesharing
  4. Negativland Mark Hosler on Copyright
  5. Paris Accord on Voluntary Licensing - Panel
  6. The Future of Darknets

Citizen Journalism

  1. Bill Thompson on Citizen Journalism
  2. Blogs vs Print - Whither Objectivity
  3. Citizen Reporters Forum 2006
  4. Dan Gillmor on Grassroots Journalism
  5. James Boyle on Re-Inventing the Gatekeeper
  6. Jay Rosen on Open Source Journalism
  7. News and Citizen Engagement
  8. We Are the Media

Open Media Practices

  1. Economics of Open Archives
  2. Free and Open Source Video Software
  3. Business Interests in Open Content
  4. The Economics of Open Text

Radio and TV

  1. MIT's Kwan Lee on the Future of Viral Radios
  2. Software Radio
  3. The Future of Radio

User-Generated Content

  1. Convergence Culture
  2. Danah Boyd on MySpace at OReilly
  3. How far will User Generated Content Go

Social Media

  1. Social Media Video Tutorials
  2. Social Networks and Internet Connectivity Effects
  3. Stowe Boyd on Generational Shifts and Technology
  4. Stowe Boyd on Social Software as Me First Software
  5. Ted Nelson on the Politics of Internet Software

Pages in category "Media"

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Media in category "Media"

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