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Title: The becoming of ideal audience workers : game modders and distributive websites.
Authors: Hong, Renyi.
Keywords: DRNTU::Social sciences::Communication::Cultural studies
Issue Date: 2012
Abstract: The proliferation of participative media technologies in the last decade had transformed the paradigms of traditional media production. The newfound celebratory freedom for audiences to be media producers is balanced by fears of an exploitative labour situation: an apprehension that participatory presents a beguiling front for audiences to be co-opted as free workers for commercial actors. This project adds to these criticisms by problematizing creative autonomy, the assumption that audiences produce for the psychological gratifications of exercising creative talents and their productive capacities are entirely voluntary and unrestrained. Taking the context of game modification (modding), it proposes that the distributive web apparatus allows for modders to subjectify themselves under work discourses and become ideal audience workers (that is, by virtue of the time and intensity of their contribution) of their own choosing. The genealogy and in-depth interviews converge to express the neoliberal economic rationality of the game modding enterprise and offers a new perspective into the landscape of audience labour. Modders, for instance, ally an ideology of self-improvement with the changes in ratings and ranks reflected on distributive websites. As such, the distributive websites act as a technology of the self, enabling the self-surveillance of bodies, productivities and ethics. This leads game modders now only to produce harder, but also to take up auxiliary laboring activities that may not be entirely enjoyable. In this way, Audience labour cannot be read as a voluntary labour force motivated only by psychological gratification. Rather, audience producers do often learn to become ideal workers by transposing the ideal work ethics of paid work settings into participative work
Rights: Nanyang Technological University
Fulltext Permission: restricted
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:WKWSCI Theses

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