Youtube’s Participatory Culture and Democratic Potential
Soong, Denise Ee Lyn
Date of Issue2017
School of Humanities and Social Sciences
The theory of participatory culture in new media proposes a system that guarantees unrestricted access for all in the media industry. It promises a more democratic process of production and distribution with a greater representation of minority voices, that are systematically ignored by traditional media institutions. This research investigates the validity of such claims by examining the lived experienced of private producers who use Youtube as a platform to broadcast their content. Using in depth interviews and a 3.5 months long, participant observation, the research identified three dominant themes: the inadequacy of Youtube’s structural framework in facilitating genuine participation, the bottom-up social collaborations and problem-solving of producers approaching a semblance of participatory culture, and the development of new forms of corporate controls, disguised as a champion of democratic empowerment.
Final Year Project (FYP)
Nanyang Technological University