My good friend, Mirko Tobias Schäfer is defending his dissertation today. In fact, by the time many of you read this, he may already be finished and recognized as Dr. Schäfer. 🙂
It has been my pleasure for the last 15 months or so to read Mirko’s manuscript, Bastard Culture! User participation and the extension of cultural industries, and I am pleased to report that he has posted a pdf online. –Particularly since I need to cite his work in some of mine, and have been waiting on this! It’s a solid piece of scholarship. Briefly, it
steps beyond the usual framework and analyzes user participation in the context of accompanying popular and scholarly discourse, as well as the material aspects of design, and their relation to the practices of design and appropriation…
The availability of computers and Internet expand the traditional culture industry into the domain of users, who actively participate in cultural production, either by appropriating products from the commercial domain or by creating their owns. But while user activities constitute a significant loss of control for certain sectors of traditional media industries, especially in the area of distribution, the larger culture industry benefits from user driven innovation through the appropriation of corporate design.
Go and download it immediately.
So congratulations, Mirko. I’m proud of all your hard work and perseverance.