Participatory Culture and DIY Youth Media Production
Every child deserves the chance to express him- or herself through words, sounds, and images, even if most will never write, perform, or draw professionally. Having these experiences, we believe, changes the way youth think about themselves and alters the way they look at work created by others … – Henry Jenkins
If you are not accounting for informal learning spaces, you may be ignoring students’ own intrinsic interests, creative capacities, and what they bring to the classroom as cultural capital or as ‘funds of knowledge’.
As discussed in class today: Here are the two options for production 3.
Option 1: Researching and Reporting Back on Participatory Culture/s
Drawing upon the features and characteristics defined by Jenkins, please research an online “affinity group” where people are making and sharing authentic media works (i.e., producing art, culture and knowledge) and where learning is active and self-directed – and multiliteracies are being enacted.
Drawing upon the concepts and examples in the Participatory Culture reading, explore and document facets of the affinity group, learning community, or practice you have selected: for example:
Fanfiction/Fan-Art communities, (digital) music making communities, ‘Citizen Science’ networks, machinima production, video making (communities and practices oriented around making critical remixes, political/paraody remixes, anime remixes, film trailer re-cuts, mash-ups, and so on), as well as informal Game-Making communities, online advocacy/political communities etc / ad infinitum. You will have to keyword search terms to find sites and affinity spaces where these practices are going on (from wikis to youtube to bandcamp).
Report Back from Your Journey: Your analysis should include 1) observations about how the “affinity group” enacts or embodies features of a particiaptory culture (as described by Jenkins) 2) analysis and discussion about what and how people learn and why people might engage in literacy/creative practices on their own, under their own power 3) connections to the reading and 4) please document your research with screen shots and/or links that “show” what you are talking about.
Try to keep around 500 words
Option 2: Go Do Participatory Culture
Based on this week’s readings, Confronting the Challenges of Participatory Culture, this production invites you to experiment with the tools of the trade – tools that support DIY creative media production and learning and sharing in online affinity spaces. Select a creative tool (used in digital affinity groups and communities) and make something (that you can share with that community). Use the reading as a springboard (and look at option 1 above for possible creative practices).
The main idea of this option is for you to acquire some fluency with a media tool – and explore what it can do (technically, aesthetically, etc) and to understand what and how people learn through making in affinity spaces and participatory culture.
Your work does not need to be a ‘masterpiece’ – but you must explore and experiment with the different affordances of making and design (and try to have fun creating something interesting – or of value – to you: something that might shine some light on ideas in the readings about multimodality, participation, and learning through play).
Once you create something, provide a brief informal reflection on the process – what/how you learned, how it made you feel; and briefly connect the experience to the reading. If you select option two, the key here is to play (seriously) and have fun.
Due in Two Weeks (Monday before Class)
Make a short video film, remix video, or experimental film: iMovie (mac) or Photo-Movie Editor (PC/Windows) Create video works, documentary films, visual essays, cinematic works (any genre), poetronica, experimental films, ‘remixes’ and mashups. If you have an older version of Windows (PC) you may have Windows Movie Maker (PC)
iBook Author (mac): Interactive multimodal publishing: integrates texts, images and graphics (knowledge visualization and modelling), video works, audio soundfiles, interactive min-presentations, 3-D modelling tools.
Twine is an easy-to-use browser-based tool for creative interactive, non-linear narratives, multimodal stories, and interactive narratives games. Community supported (tons of videos and tutorials). Use by local Toronto GameMaking
Scratch: Discussed in the article, Scratch is often used in classrooms as introductory tool for game making and coding and has its own built-in participatory/sharing community.
Ren Py Visual Novel Creator. Ton of Fun. Used in Anime affinity groups, but can be used to create super cool visual novels and interactive stories.
Screencasting Software: for making Machinima or filming desktop: Open-Broadcast Software (Screencapture / Streaming – Free) / Camtasia (free trial only) ; Apowersoft (free) or Screencast-O-Matic (Free).
Due in Two Weeks (Monday before Class)