Understanding Evolving Audience Practices in TV/Film

A wide range of researchers have drawn on Spreadable Media in looking at the evolving ways that media companies are understanding and thinking about their audiences. See some of those studies below:

  • Rhiannon Bury and Johnson Li reference Spreadable Media regarding  their Television 2.0 study, in hypothesizing that more continental Europeans were using their computers for viewing television content more frequently that viewers in the U.S., U.K.,  or Canada because of “the unevenness of transnational media flows” and “the spreadability of American popular culture texts.” Their results are available at “Is It Live or Is It Timeshifted, Streamed or Downloaded?” published by New Media & Society in 2013.
  • In their 2014 piece for Revista Mediterránea de Comunicación (The Mediterranean Journal of Communication), entitled “Televisión Conectada en España: Contenidos, Pantallas y Hábitos de Visionado,” authors Patricia Diego González, Enrique Guerrero Pérez, and Cristina Etayo Pérez include Spreadable Media among their literature review of key recent studies on “the emergence of a new digital culture.” The study (in Spanish) focuses on viewing via “connected devices,” analyzing which screens are preferred and what type of media texts are preferred for these non-traditional “TV” screens.
  • Can the popularity of TV series, building from both industry-created and audience-created factors, be explained through mathematical models? In “Dynamics and Motivations of Media Marketing: The Role of Globalization and Empowerment,” published in the mathematical journal Abstract and Applied Analysis, Ca’ Foscari University of Venice management researcher Cinzia Coapinto and Università della Svizzera Italianamedia and journalism researcher Eleonora Benecchi provide such a mathematical formula, as well as a decision-making model for media companies to consider their investments in a marketing campaign, using case studies of various U.S. TV shows imported into the Italian media market. Their research draws on Spreadable Media and various other books to set the background for the importance of audience-generated activity in the modern media market.
  • University of St. Andrews Institute for Capitalising on Creativity doctoral researcher Michael Franklin references the book in his 2013 Participations: Journal of Audience & Reception Studies piece, “What Metrics Really Mean, a Question of Causality and Construction in Leveraging Social Media Audiences into Business Results: Cases from the UK Film Industry.” Franklin uses Spreadable Media as a reference point for the media industries’ current focus on counting instances of the sharing and viewing (i.e. likes, followers, views, downloads, shares).
  • Meanwhile, Franklin’s 2013 piece with colleagues Nicola Searle, Dimitrinka Stoyanova, and Barbara Townley for Creativity and Innovation Management, entitled “Innovation in the Application of Digital Tools for Managing Uncertainty: The Case of UK Independent Film,” provides a case study meant to apply “risk and uncertainty management” to innovation in digital/social media in the film industry. The authors evoke Spreadable Media in the introduction not help lay the foundation for the current media environment these attempts at innovation in the tim industry are trying to acclimate to.
  • Steinar Ellingsen’s 2014 piece “Seismic Shifts: Platforms, Content Creators and Spreadable Media” for Media International Australia draws on Spreadable Media to describe a shift from “distribution” to “audience-driven ‘circulation’” and on the book’s consideration of evolving relationships between media producers and “grassroots intermediaries.”
  • Germán Antonio Arango-Forero’s 2013 piece in Observatorio, entitled “Fragmentación de Audiencias Juveniles en un Ambiente Comunicativo Multimedial: El Caso Colombiano,” looks at the implications of audience fragmentation through a case study focused on 17-24-year-old Colombians. The piece draws on Spreadable Media as one of multiple texts looking at more active audience behaviors in the contemporary media environment.
  • Michael Lahey’s 2013 dissertation for Indiana University’s Department of Communication and Culture, Soft Control: Television’s Relationship to Digital Micromedia, draws on Spreadable Media’s reaction against the term “viral” and argument for opportunities for a greater degree of active participation from media audiences.
  • Jessica Hutchinson’s Master’s thesis for Louisiana State University’s Manship School of Mass Communication, entitled “Did You Watch #TheWalkingDead Last Night? An Examination of Television Hashtags and Twitter Activity,” draws on Spreadable Media’s distinction between appointment-based viewing and engagement-based viewing and other arguments on transmedia storytelling, audience engagement practices, and characteristics of media texts more likely to spread.
  • Cultural anthropologist (& Spreadable Media contributor) Grant McCracken looks at how poorly television shows facilitate word-of-mouth discussions about their episodes and how making TV content more grabbable and quotable can greatly benefit TV audiences and TV producers alike—drawing on the book to build his argument.
  • In her 2014 Master’s thesis for the University of Ottawa, entitled “L’industrie Canadienne de la Télévision à l’ère du Numérique: L’invasion du Multi-écrans,” Fanny-Ève Tapp draws on Spreadable Media when describing why people engage in more participatory behaviors in and around television shows and, in particular, the motivations of greater access to and control of television content.