Audience 2.0

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Nathan Lovejoy:

"And so we come to audience 2.0. "2.0" is generally a tag attached to differentiate software versions, like 'Firefox'—except there is no 1.0 as reference nor a 3.0 as destination. The pairing of {word} and 2.0 derives from Web 2.0—to state what must be obvious to anyone reading this. It's a formula that has become all-too-popular in recent months. We can guess at what audience 2.0 means through the immediate association. Where Web 2.0 implies everything from an aesthetic, to a business model, to a philosophy, audience 2.0 implies the other half of that equation. It is the people who use, experience, and interact with one another through whatever it is we may call “Web 2.0.” Audience 2.0 is an internet neologism, and as such its lifespan as a functional term is less important than its cause for existence.

What we're calling “audience 2.0” could perhaps represent a new power relationship, different from those of audience and the audience. Where within the audience, the person on the hearing end of the exchange becomes a subject to the control of the hyper-individual, defined purely in relation to him; and where within audience, the one giving audience holds the privileged position; I propose that we read audience 2.0 as a hybrid exchange within a wider emergent system, holding often contradictory aspects from both earlier readings of (the) audience. If audience implies active consumption on the part of a singular entity privileged with subjectivity, and the audience implies passive consumption on the part of a mass, devoid of identity or autonomy, then audience 2.0 implies a multiplicity that is at once singular and multiple, autonomous and fluid, solid and shattered, local and global, outward-facing and inward-looking: audience 2.0 is a networked subjectivity, it is a swarm." (

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Full essay on Audience 2.0 at