There is an emerging range of self-help guides advising users on how to minimise their interaction with media. The aim is to create a lifestyle and identity that is less media-centred and more grounded in “real life”. This article discusses media self-help in the light of theories of media domestication, highlighting processes where the aim is to reduce the importance of, rather than to incorporate, media and communication technology into users’ lives. Based on a sample of 30 guides from the self-help site Wikihow dealing with how to handle television, games and social media respectively, the article discusses media self-help strategies in relation to key concepts of domestication theory: appropriation, objectification, incorporation and conversion. In conclusion, the article argues that strategies of withdrawal and resistance should receive more attention in media studies, and point to the concept of reverse domestication as one way of highlighting such strategies.
In 2014, Syvertsen, Enli, Mjøs, and Moe authored The Media Welfare State: Nordic Media in a Digital Era to explore the specificities of Nordic media and the analogy between welfare state and media structures. In this short article, we point to how selected works challenge or extend the notions of a media welfare state beyond the original analysis. We begin by placing the work in a tradition of comparative and typology-generating scholarship and point to parallel works emerging at the same time. We then highlight others’ contributions in order to identify tendencies in Nordic media and research. In conclusion, we use examples from current research to argue that changes in the media system may be studied from both the angle of changing media policies and that of changing welfare states.
This article presents an empirically based examination of how the Norwegian television industry incorporates audience activity and audience-generated material, and of how audiences respond to the opportunities presented. It explores three main research questions: First, how extensive is audience activity on television? Second, to what degree do different television activities correspond to familiar patterns of social stratification? And third, is there any evidence for the view that digital feedback channels, such as SMS and the Web, provide access to television for new groups of people? To investigate these questions, a case study of the Norwegian media market has been carried out, based on two data sets. The extent of audience activity is examined through a representative audience survey conducted during a period of two weeks in 2004. The second data set is a one-week survey of Norwegian television output on the six Norwegian-language channels in 2005.
When planning for the future, media managers must balance realism with the need to foresee unexpected changes. This article investigates images of the future in the Norwegian media industry in the early years of the 21st century and identifies five key trends that media managers envisioned: personalized content, user-generated content, rich media, cross-platform media, and mobility. We argue that increased reflection on such visions and how they are formed may put managers (and researchers) in a better position to meet the future. We therefore ask to what degree they were influenced by actual developments at the time, or anchored in more classical imagery of the future. The analysis illustrates how new technologies become focal points for articulating old dreams about the future. At the latest turn of the century, the mobile phone served as such a focal technology.
Digitization, new entrants and the disruption of business models prompt concern about the media’s societal mission. The article investigates how media managers conceptualize societal responsibility in an era of turmoil. Based on 20 semi-structured interviews with executive managers of private media companies in Norway and Flanders, the study reveals important differences in the definition of the public interest. While Flemish media managers emphasize brand value, Norwegian managers emphasize societal values, such as educating the public. When comparing managers of traditional and newer companies, a third, more straightforward market logic is also elicited, illuminating the vulnerability of traditional values.