November 11, 2011
Here are some key remarks from a panel at this week’s Futures of Entertainment conference at MIT.
Panel: “Spreadable Media: Creating Value and Meaning in a Networked Society”
- Letting unauthorized content circulate and studying how it’s used and consumed is a great opportunity that no one seems to be taking advantage of.
- Kickstarter crowdsources funding. The key is that the audience buys into the idea of a film financially. But crowdsourcing doesn’t have to stop there; it could lead to crowdsourcing of casting, SFX, etc… increasing the attachment the public has with a project.
- A shift from the term viral to spreadable. Viral gives the content a feel of “special,” “hard to do” or “a one-off,” but spreadable allows people to think of producing content that people will want to share and consume.
- If you start to “pay” the fan for their “free labor” of connecting with your brand, the relationship shifts and is no longer a legitimate serendipitous fan connection.
- The impression model (number of views) is no longer valid. There is a growing trend to say, “But I can find a few people that are influencers.” However, picking a small group of people to communicate with can be shortsighted. Those small groups may be vocal, but may not know what the masses truly like or want.
- Massive organizations are set up to hear, very slow to response. Massive organizations aren’t set up for listening. Listening is a very human response; you can’t take the humanity out of communication.
- Companies need to start thinking about taking a much more service-based attitude. Take for example Dominos: “Our pizza was bad; what can we do to make it better?”
- Companies are crisis-based, companies must be able to listen to audiences. Media producers have to listen to their audience before a crisis hits.
- But we have to understand that too much media circulating outside of context can lead to dilution or can be used against the media creator.
Henry Jenkins (University of Southern California)
Sam Ford (Peppercom Strategic Communications)
Joshua Green (Undercurrent)