Massachusetts Institute of Technology
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FoE4: Transmedia for Social Change

This panel will broaden the discussion of transmedia properties to areas beyond the commercial or promotional. What are the potentials for transmedia to be used to affect social change? What parallels can we draw between the activities fan communities and other sites of collective activity? How does participation in the collectives that emerge around transmedia properties equip young people with skills as citizens? What responsibilities should corporations bear, if any, as they try to court fan communities and deep engagement?

This panel will also consider the cross-over between the forms of collective activity that mark participation in transmedia narratives and other forms of collective activities that harness entertainment media for social good. With the ability to mobilize (often) large and passionate groups of people quickly in response to actions that threaten their values and practices, fan communities constitute collective bargaining units acting on the behalf of consumers. Increasingly, fan communities are also deploying their social networks to try and bring about political and cultural change, resulting in an emerging form of activism which may impact on public policy or social welfare concerns.

Moderator: Henry Jenkins – Provost’s Professor of Communication, Journalism and Cinematic Arts, USC
Panelists include: Stephen Duncombe – NYU, author of Dream: Re-Imagining Progressive Politics in the Age of Fantasy (The New Press); Andrew Slack – The Harry Potter Alliance; Noessa Higa – Visionaire Media; Lorraine Sammy – Co-creator Racebending; Jedidiah Jenkins-Director of Public & Media Relations, Invisible Children

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December 04, 2009 16:49
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