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José van Dijck:

"The agency of you-sers, over the past few years, has gained enormous clout and has led to a worldwide emancipation of consumers and viewers. But their agency is still fragile and ill-defined, as they are deliberately anarchistic in asserting their rights, needs, liberties, and duties. There are no unions for you-sers, but neither is there a friendly corporate climate that warmly welcomes these new “unpaid” labourers to the media market, unless they dedicate this labour magnanimously and unconditionally to the commercial interests of established companies (Terranova, 2000). Part of the strategy to enhance user’s agency and conscious awareness, is to analyze the various available institutional models of homecasting; it is crucial that users are aware of increasingly sophisticated technological, economic, and legal strategies deployed by media companies to channel virtual spaces of seemingly spontaneous, uninhibited audiovisual creativity. Baring these mechanisms and exploring the stakes in the battle between old and new forces in the mediascape is a first step towards the emancipation of users.

My deliberate introduction of “homecasting”, “you-sers” and “snippets” as potentially fruitful concepts is not an attempt to coin a few neologisms that render exotic phenomena intelligible to non-academics. An important task of media scholars is to cast the debate over user-generated audiovisual content in terms of culture. Viewers, consumers, and users are distinct cultural categories with different types of agency. Broadcasting, narrowcasting, and homecasting embody dissimilar institutional practices, fulfilling complementing social and cultural roles in the continuum of media space. Viewers, consumers and you-sers are integrated actors in the social practice of homecasting, even if they combine eclectic and sometimes antithetical activities. And programs, formats, and snippets deserve to be inspected as cultural forms, each signifying a succinct product of creativity. Only if we understand the intricacies of interdependent yet centrifugal forces in our culture, can we make conscious decisions in how to act as cultural agents." (cited at http://www.strangelove.com/blog/2009/03/television-20-youtube-emergence-homecasting/)


Essay: Television 2.0: YouTube and the Emergence of Homecasting. José van Dijck []http://web.mit.edu/comm-forum/mit5/papers/vanDijck_Television2.0.article.MiT5.pdf]