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Appears in:
Pages: 368-374
Publication year: 2017
ISBN: 978-84-617-8491-2
ISSN: 2340-1079
doi: 10.21125/inted.2017.0221

Conference name: 11th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 6-8 March, 2017
Location: Valencia, Spain

NAVIGATING DIGITAL CULTURE: REMIX CULTURE, VIRAL MEDIA, AND INTERNET MEMES

B. Wiggins

Webster University Vienna Campus (AUSTRIA)
The purpose of this oral presentation is to share information on the process of developing an innovative new course on navigating digital cultures. The design of the course is in direct response to salient issues in new and social media. Specifically, in exploring both print and digital texts, this course identifies three major goals. First, the course seeks to demystify the transformative power within digital culture to remix narratives for repetitive popular consumption (such as the story of the hero in Star Wars or The Matrix). Students today are saturated by digital storytelling but are largely unaware of the element of remix involved in the iterative process of producing and consuming media texts, such as vidding. Theoretical and practical insights from individuals such as Lawrence Lessig (copyright issues), Henry Jenkins (fan culture; folk art), James Campbell (monomyth), and others will add academic rigor to this section of the course. As a second component in the course, students will learn about the discursive power of internet memes as artifacts of digital culture. Internet memes are usually some combination of image and text, video, or other media which exist as remixed, iterated messages rapidly spread by members of participatory digital culture for the purpose of starting or continuing a conversation (Wiggins & Bowers, 2015). Often viewed as sources of humor and parody, internet memes have emerged as a powerful tool for individuals in digital culture to offer socio-cultural and political critiques of current events. Leveraged by politicians as well as protestors, internet memes have become a viable means for the quick, visual expression of a particular ideology. Theoretical and practical insights from relevant and recent studies conducted on internet memes will enhance the students’ understanding of the topic. As a third component, the course will enable students to explain aspects of viral media in the context of entertainment, business, politics, marketing, and more. Viral media as a concept is defined as the capacity for media to spread rapidly through online spaces. Viral media can be viewed as a form of spreadable media, yet one which enjoys massive popularity over a distinct period of time, such as Gangnam Style which has nearly 2 billion views since it was uploaded to YouTube on 12 July 2012. Although immensely popular for a short time, viral media like the original Gangnam Style video tend to wane and ultimately cease viral spread. Students will learn about the possible advantages as well as disadvantages of viral media. Theoretical and practical insights from relevant and recent studies conducted on viral media will enhance the students’ understanding of the topic. Also included in the presentation will be suggested readings as well as course assignments and projects. Together, these topics will enable students to critically engage with digital culture. Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to: demonstrate an understanding of remix culture, internet memes, and viral media; identify attributes that may explain how media go viral and why certain messages become memes; write critically about current perspectives on remix culture, internet memes, and viral media; and, apply their knowledge to practical applications of the course’s major topics.
@InProceedings{WIGGINS2017NAV,
author = {Wiggins, B.},
title = {NAVIGATING DIGITAL CULTURE: REMIX CULTURE, VIRAL MEDIA, AND INTERNET MEMES},
series = {11th International Technology, Education and Development Conference},
booktitle = {INTED2017 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-617-8491-2},
issn = {2340-1079},
doi = {10.21125/inted.2017.0221},
url = {http://dx.doi.org/10.21125/inted.2017.0221},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Valencia, Spain},
month = {6-8 March, 2017},
year = {2017},
pages = {368-374}}
TY - CONF
AU - B. Wiggins
TI - NAVIGATING DIGITAL CULTURE: REMIX CULTURE, VIRAL MEDIA, AND INTERNET MEMES
SN - 978-84-617-8491-2/2340-1079
DO - 10.21125/inted.2017.0221
PY - 2017
Y1 - 6-8 March, 2017
CI - Valencia, Spain
JO - 11th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
JA - INTED2017 Proceedings
SP - 368
EP - 374
ER -
B. Wiggins (2017) NAVIGATING DIGITAL CULTURE: REMIX CULTURE, VIRAL MEDIA, AND INTERNET MEMES, INTED2017 Proceedings, pp. 368-374.
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