Cloud Opera or The Dido Problem (Vaba Lava, Tallinn, Feb-Mar 2019) is a theatrical performance investigating, through artistic means, the human condition in the datafied world. The play was created in collaboration between Vaba Lava theatre and Tallinn University’s Centre of Excellence in Media Innovation and Digital Culture (MEDIT). In terms of its representations, the play combined references to man-made data ‘clouds’ with knowledge on atmospheric clouds and suggested that the former are just as unpredictable and uncontrollable as the latter. In this article, Liina Keevallik, the author and the scenographer of the performance together with Indrek Ibrus, a media researcher, discuss the uses of the media archaeological approach both in artistic practice and in creating “Cloud Opera”. We also discuss what media archaeological “findings” we could glean from the scenic elements of the play.
This paper is an exploratory study to understand the content marketing practices in Estonia, a current trend that ties together journalism, communications, and advertising. Estonia is a small market where the ‘guilds’ of journalists and PR professionals are rather intertwined. Trends occurring here may provide suggestions for larger markets and future developments. A qualitative study was conducted in Spring 2018. The objective of the study was to describe the problems and potential complications arising from the reorganization of traditional areas of activity of agents operating in the field of the communications industry – specifically in the context of content marketing, and from the viewpoint of representatives of PR agencies. The article begins with putting the phenomenon of content marketing into a wider societal context – and specifically that of the Estonian media ecosystem. The possible influences of content marketing on such important realms, and such defining factors as trust (Luhmann 2000), social capital (Bourdieu 1995) the integrity, independence, and the interactions between the different fields (ibid) are discussed. The results of the survey indicate that the field of public relations is changing as a result of the forces from the other neighbouring fields, that of journalism and advertising. The paper points out that the issue of trust and trustworthiness and the origins of ‘the media’ need to be addressed in order to provide integrity and transparency.
The Republic of Estonia celebrated the 100th anniversary of its independence on February 24, 2018. The celebration marked a significant milestone for Estonians and, as a way of recognizing this, the Estonian government implemented different marketing and participatory strategies for involving individuals and organizations to take part in the celebration. As such, individuals and organizations were invited to create special gifts for Estonia and its citizens. These gifts could be in the form of tangible presents or in the form of special events and cultural programs. The official gifts were marked by the official Estonia 100 (in the Estonian language: EV100) logo. One such gift to the Estonian population were a number of audiovisual productions that were enabled through special funding from the Estonian government, managed by the Estonian Film Institute. These productions included, besides 40 short documentaries about young Estonian inventors, one animation, six feature films, two documentaries and a TV drama series (EV100 2019a).1 This paper reports a study that explored the impact of the Estonia 100 brand on the production, marketing and consumption of these films and the TV series.
The need to re-structure established media systems needs to be acknowledged. In a situation where new services will be provided by different actors of the digital economy, the role of public service media (PSM) requires attention. If, generally, PSM are under pressure in Europe, the situation in small national markets is even more complicated. PSM are under pressure and also need to find ways to reformulate their role in society and culture. Broad discussions and new agreements between politicians, citizens and the media industry are necessary to change this situation. We will approach the question of whether a specific gap still exists in the media market that can be filled by PSM? The article will seek these answers based on various survey data and collected statistics in Estonia.
Researchers and practitioners have long been intrigued by the role of stars in the film industry (McDonald 2005). Actors with star status can enhance the economic prospects of a film (Wallace et al. 1993). For instance, replacing average stars with top stars has been shown to increase revenue (Nelson, Glotfelty 2012). A meta-analysis of 61 studies collating data from 1545 films has shown the significant effect of commercial star power on Hollywood films’ revenues (Hofmann, et al. 2017). The Hollywood movie industry can be viewed as a system that maintains and regulates the popularity of existing and emerging stars through agents, producers and award systems (McDonald 2013).
The Estonian child helpline service launched in 2009 uses a free nationwide 24h Child Helpline phone number. The purpose of the service is to enable everyone to report on children in need, forward the information to specialists and, if necessary, get primary social counselling and crisis counselling for children and other people. The service is provided in accordance with the Estonian Child Protection Act that prescribes that all citizens are required to immediately notify the social services, police or other assistanceproviding authorities about children in need of protection or assistance. This article is based on studies conducted between 2013 and 2015. In the course of the research, data were collected for increasing the effectiveness of the hotline’s communication campaigns. In addition to the general objective of the article, the data collected includes quantitative research mixed with qualitative data that helps to understand the factors that encourage and inhibit the use of the hotline service. The focus is on indicators that illustrate the effectiveness of the diffusion of innovation, and special attention is paid to the results that highlight risk, the existence of mental barriers and trust. Finally, the study analyses the weaknesses of past hotline campaigns and makes some suggestions for future.
The article argues that Wojtek Smarzowski’s film Rose (Róża, Poland, 2011) undermines the dominant bigendered logic of screen death and suffering in the Polish films depicting the experience of World War II. In these films, there is a significant absence of images of female suffering and death, which is striking when compared to the abundant images of wounded and dying male bodies, usually represented as a lavish visual spectacle. This unrepresented female death serves as a ‘structuring absence’ that governs the systematic signifying practices of Polish cinema. Most importantly, it expels the female experience of World War II from the realm of history to the realm of the mythical. This representational regime has been established in the Polish national cinema during the 1950s, especially in Andrzej Wajda’s films, and is still proving its longevity. As the author argues, Smarzowski’s Rose is perhaps the most significant attempt to undermine this gendered cinematic discourse.
Specifically, the essay explores the ways in which Smarzowski’s Rose departs from previous dominant modes of representation of the World War II experience in Polish cinema, especially its gendered aspect. Firstly, it examines how Rose abandons the generic conventions of both war film and historical drama and instead, utilises selected conventions of melodrama to open up the textual space in which to represent the female experience of historical events. Then the author looks more closely at this experience and discusses the film’s representation of the suffering female body to argue that it subverts the national narrative of the war experience that privileges male suffering. A close analysis of the relationship between sound and image in the scenes of bodily violence reveals how the film reclaims the female body from the abstract domain of national allegory and returns it to the realm of individual embodied experience. The article concludes that Rose presents the female body as resisting the singular ideological inscription, and instead, portrays it as simultaneously submitting to and resisting the gendered violence of war.