I Reviewed this: _New Cultural Networks

On: September 14, 2008
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About Arno de Natris
Finished the Master in New Media in august 2009. See for mor details about me on http://www.arnodenatris.nl


At the Stifo@Sandberg masterclass professionals from all kind of disciplines, from film and art to radio and internet, come together for exchanging thoughts and working on several (cross)media products. It’s a joint project of the Dutch Cultural Broadcasting Fund (Stifo) and the Sandberg Institute. Goal of the masterclass is to set up new initiatives within new media and looking at already existing products.

In _New Cultural Networks several (new) media phenomena and projects linked to the masterclasses of the last seven years are highlighted in bright and not too long texts, written by Dutch media producers and experts. They reveal their opinion on some aspects of new media in relation with ‘old’ media.

For example, Martijn de Waal explains in his text The People Formerly Know as the Audience that you can’t call the audience the ‘audience’ anymore. He talks about user generated content and how to re-organize subsidies and foundations. Wilko Bello and Jeroen Disch give a discussion about how to introduce poetry on the internet with the example of SlamSphere. Geert Lovink critically observes YouTube and explains why we don’t watch television anymore. We are looking in a mirror and we watch databases.

One project is nice to give a little more attention: The Great Firewall Of China. The discussion is about this website whereon you can test if a url is blocked in China. With the Olympics in our recent memories and the Paralympics still running, or rolling perhaps, the discussion on the censorship of websites in China is hot at the moment. Journalists and others weren’t able to surf to some sites during the Olympics. For example, the website of Amnesty International didn’t pass the Chinese digital firewall and for some time you were not able to check the BBC website. Unfortunately The Great Firewall of China isn’t functional anymore, although you can find a list with url’s that are censored in China. On the, of course, red coloured website: ‘Because of the ever stricter measures of censorship China imposes on the Internet, the team of www.greatfirewallofchina.org at present can no longer vouch for the reliability of its test tool. We have therefore decided to take the test tool offline.’ So we can’t check if the Masters of Media blog is blocked in China.

The collection of texts in _New Cultural Networks isn’t hard to read and gives a nice overview of crossmedia projects and new media phenomena. It’s just a pity that are some little mistakes, like ‘culrtual’ at the cover and some little faults in the texts as well. Online texts can be changed, these not. It’s at least funny to see how new media aspects are interwoven into the pages of the book. For example, every texts starts with the ‘I’ aspect of new media: I tagged this, I digged this, I bookmarked this, etcetera. I reviewed this book and it’s pretty interesting, even if you’re not one of the participants of the Stifo@Sandberg masterclass.


Some of the projects related to the masterclass:


Beperkt Houdbaar


De Ramp



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