Image source: News.com.au
The way that I receive content today is very different to how my Nan received her media content when she was my age. My Nan used to receive all her content from the radio, television and newspapers. Therefore, these media’s (except for perhaps newspapers with the allowance for letters to the editors) are a one way media, they only produce information and do not receive anything back from the audience, this is better known as Analogue flowing content.
While the media I consume is digital content, the information flows between me and my device and the content also now ‘flows across multiple platforms’ (Jenkins 2006 p17). This certainly has changed how individuals use media. Although this is where I argue the relevancy of Murdoch Newspapers in today’s society and why they have such an important place for deciding election outcomes. Even Alcorn (2013) states that Murdoch is ‘irrelevant’, though personally I believe the Murdoch media is a great example for the demonstration of convergence as he cannot just rely on his Newspaper’s he must also employ his other medias such as Sky news and News.com.au to place his agenda forward in the public sphere. Though politics is also starting to become a great example of convergence.
Politicians are increasingly using social media to connect with their constituency. The convergence of multiple devices into a singular device such as the mobile phone, have aided politicians in constantly updating their constituency on their daily events. Through platforms such as Instagram (Kevin Rudd former Australian Prime Minister famously uses), Facebook and Twitter. Of-course this also means the Smart Phone has not only integrated a computer, instant messaging and a phone into its operating system but has also converged multiple social media platforms into a singular device. I believe this has allowed politicians to better engage while they are out of the office. Also often you will see politicians twittering while question time is occurring in Parliamentary sittings as this allows them to provide their view point on the current debate even if they do not have the point of order. They can publicize their opinion on an online medium that costs the user nothing.
As Jenkins (2004 pp. 41-41) states, convergence has allowed producers to alter their relationships with consumers with one of the ways being to ‘re- engage citizens’. This is exactly how I see the current political use of the media. The use of social media platforms I believe is a way to re-engage the citizens in politics and allow them a way to easily contact the member.
How does your local member employ social media?
Alcorn, G (2013), ‘Scoff all you like, but it’s too early to write off the media mogul’s partisan papers’, The Age, 16th August, viewed 28th August. <www.theage.com.au/comment/murdochs-voice-still-reaches-voters-20130815-2rz7l.html>
Jenkins, H. (2004) The Cultural Logic of Media Convergence, International Journal of Cultural Studies, 7/1, 33-43.
Jenkins, H. (2006). ‘Worship at the altar of convergence: A new paradigm for understanding media change’. In H. Jenkins, Convergence culture: Where old and new media collide (pp 1-24). New York: New York University Press.