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Reviewed by: Cheryl LaGuardia, Research Librarian, Widener Library, Harvard University
Media Industries is a new open access journal promoting critical studies of media industries and institutions worldwide. It is produced by the Media Industries Editorial Collective, comprised of scholars from the Chinese University of Hong Kong, Georgia State University in Atlanta, Queensland University of Technology, the University of California at Santa Barbara, the University of Nottingham, and the University of Texas at Austin. The Collective seeks submissions from across the range of media industries, including advertising, electronic games, film, the Internet, mobile communications, music, publishing, radio, and television, and work submitted can discuss these industries individually or examine relations between different media sectors. Contemporary and historical studies are sought, exploring innovative methods, theoretical approaches, and new research trends, especially from global and international perspectives.
The current issue (volume 1, number 2, 2014) offers the following twelve articles: “Work in the Media” (which “advocates a program of study that explores the social, communal, and collaborative ways in which media professionals are able to do work in the context of an increasingly “workerless” industry”), “Media Programming in an Era of Big Data” (in which the author argues “that media industry scholarship, which is rooted in methods of observation, interview, and ethnography, could add a great deal to ongoing scholarly discussions of algorithmic culture”), “Transnational TV: What Do We Mean by “Coproduction” Anymore?” (which “attempts to identify some of the issues that arise in studying new forms of transnational television coproduction between the United States and the United Kingdom,”), “Media Industries in Revolutionary Times” (my chauvinist American reaction to the title was picturing George Washington holding a Smart phone, but the article actually “tries to raise questions about new dynamics of production, precarity, and authorship in still-evolving revolutionary contexts” such as uprisings in Egypt, Syria, and Tunisia), “Media Industries in India: An Emerging Regional Framework” (describing the rapid growth of regional media in India), “Welcome to the Unregulated Wild, Wild, Digital West” (which “examines the "transmedia" industries and multichannel networks as transitional workspaces”), “Media Industries and the Ecological Crisis,” (which argues that “media industry studies should be open to eco-materialist approaches”), ““It’s TV’s Fault I Am This Way”: Learning From Love-Hating the Media Industries” (which “advocates embracing our personal love-hate conflicts— and perhaps channeling one’s inner punk rocker in the process”), “Politically Charged Media Sites: The “Right,” the “Left,” and the Self in Research” (which discusses how “politically charged sites come with ideological baggage that skews scholarly conversations and limits the writing and reception of new research”), “Navigating the Two Worlds of Research” (which argues “in favor of inclusive philosophies that avoid dividing research communities and scholars into two distinct camps”), “The Ramifications of Media Globalization in the Global South for the Study of Media Industries” (which posits that “[m]ore attention needs to be paid to how globalization and attendant processes like localization and hybridization play out in contexts outside the media-saturated global North”), and “Home Is Where Hollywood Isn’t: Recasting East Asian Film Industries” (which notes that “audience interest in locally produced media content that has sustained the continuing growth of East Asian cinemas”). The first issue of the journal also contained 12 articles, ranging over subjects dealing with media policy, ethnography, instrumentalism, international media production, automation, film studies, cultural studies, television content, the music industry, studying in-store media, and more. Some of the material is biographical, some is almost purely theoretical, some is experiential, and some is mostly research, but the depth and breadth of the content is already impressive – and only two issues have been published so far.
This title will likely become a core entry in the field, so if you serve researchers in media and related studies please do pass this enthusiastic referral on to the students and scholars you serve.