Friday, 15 March 2013

The Remix Culture - it's not just for DJs!

In my opinion a remix culture is surrounded by concepts of authorship, participatory culture, culture jamming and more, through platforms of text, music, and art. One can argue that a lot of media around us are remixes. There are different types of remixing yet they all have a strong connection to citizen media.

Marshall McLuhan demonstrates that our lives are changed and human relations are altered with every new media.  A remix culture is a culture with forever changing social relations. One type of remix, transformative storytelling, blends existing works into new works however it does not diminish the original character’s identity rather it places them into new circumstances. An example of a popular transformative storytelling remix that we watched in class is The Buffy vs. Edward Remix which portrays the original characters of Edward Cullen and Buffy the Vampire Slayer but put together in the same environment. The remix uses clips of both of the characters speaking in their original context however it mashes the clips together to create a new story.

Another type of remix is called 'supercut' where the remix is create to reveal aspects or hidden messages of something that may be missed in an original work. The Lord of the Rings: Gandalf Remix portrays clips of Gandolf throughout the film but creates an aspect of him that viewers would not recognize from watching the original film by portraying him as fun instead of serious even though the clips are the same.

Culture Jamming is a component of the remix culture because is disrupts original works in the main stream media with the intention to have viewers acknowledge hidden messages. Adbusters is an example of culture jamming because they take popular brand advertisements and alter them to reveal hidden messages or point out reality and negative aspects of that brand’s product. In Henry Jenkins' Blog he argues that the Media Reform Movement and culture jamming such as adbusting actually corrupts the minds of young viewers as much as the original advertisements do because they strip the viewers chance for their own judgments to come through and create more ideologies. 

The remix culture can be present though many platforms, however it thrives on the Internet in result of the rise of the online public sphere, as discussed in my earlier posts. Remixing in terms of citizen media is a tool that reveals messages to citizens and in result allows them to see hidden aspects of original works, but does it really create innovative thinking or just encourage citizens to think in another direction?

Adieu from another participating citizen of media,


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