The rise of Web 2.0 has pushed the amateur to the forefront of public discourse, public policy and media scholarship. Typically non-salaried, non-specialist and untrained in media production, amateur producers are now seen as key drivers of the creative economy. But how do the activities of citizen journalists, fan fiction writers and bedroom musicians connect with longer traditions of extra-institutional media production?
This edited collection provides a much-needed interdisciplinary contextualisation of amateur media before and after Web 2.0. Surveying the institutional, economic and legal construction of the amateur media producer via a series of case studies, it features contributions from experts in the fields of law, economics and media studies based in the UK, Europe and Singapore. Each section of the book contains a detailed case study on a selected topic, followed by two further pieces providing additional analysis and commentary. Using an extraordinary array of case studies and examples, from YouTube to online games, from subtitling communities to reality TV, the book is neither a celebration of amateur production nor a denunciation of the demise of professional media industries. Rather, this book presents a critical dialogue across law and the humanities, exploring the dynamic tensions and interdependencies between amateur and professional creative production. This book will appeal to both academics and students of intellectual property and media law, as well as to scholars and students of economics, media, cultural and internet studies.
Section I: Economic histories 1. Histories of user-generated content: between formal and informal media economies 2. Competing myths of informal economies 3. Start with the household Section II: Platform politics 4. Amateur digital content and proportional commerce 5. YouTube and the formalisation of amateur media 6. The relationship between user-generated content and commerce Section III: Amateurs and authenticity 7. The manufacture of ‘authentic’ buzz and the legal relations of MasterChef 8. Harry Potter and the transformation wand: fair use, canonicity and fan activity 9. The simulation of ‘authentic’ buzz: T-Mobile and the flash mob dance Section IV: Cultural intermediaries 10. Prestige and professionalisation at the margins of the journalistic field: the case of music writers 11. Swedish subtitling strike called off! Fan-to-fan piracy, translation, and the primacy of authorisation 12. Have amateur media enhanced the possibilities for good media work? Section V: Property and play 13. Minecraft as Web 2.0: amateur creativity and digital games 14. Cosplay, creativity and immaterial labours of love 15. Web Zero: the amateur and the indie game developer Section VI: Anonymity, identity and publicity 16. Anonymous speech on the internet 17. The privacy interest in anonymous blogging 18. ‘Privacy’ of social networking texts