Tuesday, October 19, 2010

'Age of Lifestyle Media'

I wanted to latch onto this concept because I think that it brought this capture to life. I'm always looking for the bottom dollar, probably coming from my Econ minor background. We've been looking at many cult and fan ownership examples of audience participation, which gives the feeling that fans are in control. How much control do they actually have and is there a false sense of ownership or pride that these fans are taking in their material? All of these shows are created to make a profit or contribute to the given studio or networks profit therefore they are in control of the viewer gets to watch it is then up to the viewer to decide if this is what they desire or not. Their is definitely a fine line here. As we saw with the Family Guy case, there was an issue of the a TV show being cancelled and gaining a cult following which then brought it back to mainstream television. Here's an example of the fans brining back a television show through creating a rich online community but more importantly buying Family Guy DVD's. Even though the online community was destroyed after going mainstream again, the FOX didn't care, because it was able to take enough of the following to drive profits.

Lifestyle media is an interesting term to see how how the industry tries to create different mediums to engage the audience and then use this participation as a mode to gain profits. In the American Idol section the audience is creating so many different modes of participation (i.e. DialIdol) that they not only are encouraging people to watch the show but are creating sources of money for themselves (ad revenue). It's amazing to see how people's 'lifestyles' can be targeted through television shows encouraging online, peer-to-peer, and other forms of communication that further your participation with the show which will bring more revenue to this show. I think that looking at this chapter and concepts from an economic view was a great way to gain another perspective of the different ways of audience participation.

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