Locating Value in Spreadable Media: Executive Summary (part 3/3)

Sorry for the delay – I meant to post this on Monday but got caught up and totally slipped my mind. Anyway, here’s the last part of the executive summary. You can read Par1 1 and Part 2 and Part 2 in this blog and download the full paper here.

I’m hoping to get up a full research page in the coming weeks, with all papers, short pieces, and presentations I’ve churned out over the last couple of years, so look for that soonish.


Conclusions: Locating Value and Courting Communities

Final Principles:

  • Within market exchanges, things enter the transaction with a set value. In non-market exchanges, however, the value comes out of the transaction. So the value is actually created through. and comes out of, the context of the exchange, rather than being set before the good enters it.
  • The difference, then, between gift and commodity exchange is not that one is socially regulated while the other is economically or rationally regulated, but rather the speci?c rules and regulations that come into play. The differences are in how these regulations are deployed, and the relative role of the context and terms of the exchange itself rather than the contents of the exchange.
  • The networked and visible participatory practices online requires media producers recognize both market and non-market systems of exchange and the types of value and worth produced in order to engage audiences online.
  • When we seek to build businesses around users generated content, or when we’re trying to engage in social media campaigns, or when we see violations of IP, all activities that are now becoming common in any media brand or property. We can’t simply take pieces of different systems of value and cobble them together and hope for the best, nor can we simply take one system and place it within the architecture of another.
  • It does a potential disservice to media properties to simply apply the regulations of control from market systems onto non-market ones, such as in the case of DMCA takedown sweeps that remove content which not only fit within the boundaries of fair-use, but also stop audience activities that potentially generate more marketing value than cause damage.
  • Ultimately, the essence to being able to court a community and build an enduring relationship with your brand requires an understanding what kind of system your fans and consumers think they’re in. That is to say, in trying to create a system that can be mutually beneficial, and generate both market value and social worth, you must fully acknowledge and honor the parameters of both systems of exchange.
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