New media creates dramatic change in film industry SWANNY TSUI

The rapid development of social media has created more opportunities for people to communication and share their opinion through social networking sites. Technological change invents more social networking platform and allow audience to participate in online production. According to Flew (2014), “new technologies are looked to as the key the re-creation of a humane community”. New media provide public sphere that public can share their individual opinion and creativity in the internet. The audience can also be one of the distributor of a campaign or creation through social networking site. Social Media is playing an important role in shaping professional identity in the film industry. The following parts will analyze how social media change the nature of film production, the required skills of the professionals in this field and the significant impacts of changing of the social media.

Johnny Cash Project Web Page, Image sourced from

Social media has significant change in the nature of film production and advertisement. Technological determinism provides more digital platforms for people to have the power changing mainstream opinions and this society becomes social construction of technology. Grove (2011) suggests that social media has shifted the way of film production process to collaboration between storytellers, filmmakers and fragmented audiences that will have seismic effects on the filmmaking industry. Social media changes the participatory culture of film production, which has strong support for sharing the creativity and idea with others. For example, The Johnny Cash Project that is a new type of global collective art music video allows audience to create their unique and personal image of Johnny and combine all portrait to be a living music video. This platform offers possibilities for the users to share their artwork and allow the film director not only filming a production through traditional filming in a studio. This exemplifies that the participatory culture as allow the consumers and fans to actively join the creation and circulation of the new contribution (Fuchs, 2014). This culture is a crowdsourcing culture that allows more resources and collective intelligence to decrease the duration of making a video or movie production.

E studio web page, Image sourced from

Moreover, convergence changing the film industry structures, user and communication practices. Film production takes a long period of time and social media shaping a new form of collaborative film company. There are more film production company provide technological affordances that allow more people to network through digital media. For example, E Studio Network is a cloud-based collaboration platform designed to make the film production more efficient and cost effective. This platform allows the script and daily reports using secure folders to keep the document and allow anytime, anywhere and from any device to contribute film production. Kirby (2016) suggests that success in the film industry is to bringing people together, using spreadable social networks and sharing ideas in order to leverage those connections. This indicates that new media is conceptualizing audiences that how we contribute to film production and shifting the value of the audiences and play a new role in content of film contribution.

Wong Fu productions advertising poster, Image source from

In the techno-social hybrid world, social media provide us platforms to communication and also challenging the whole entertainment industry. The filmmaker need to have new skills and talents to cooperate with new technologies and social platform. Marwick (2013) states that social media application allows more entrepreneurs to compete for social benefits and young professionals constructs personal and market themselves. For example, a YouTube channel called Wong Fu Productions is a group of young editors and film producers. They produced some three minutes’ short films on the funny end and slowly include some serious topics that attracts many viewers to comment and share. This channel becomes famous, which more companies cooperate with them and world’s leading internet TV network Netflix bought their short movie to show. The internet creates the opportunities for possible new business to have hybrid economies that contribute something for free and making profit (Lessig, 2009). This indicates that social network site changes the commercial economic, that the young professionals create film in low budget for fun in the beginning and it turns out to be a business. Therefore, more audiences become entertainers. There are more beauty bloggers and gaming channel create their own channel that have vernacular creativity to grab audience attention in order to gain profits from an individual. This becomes a new trend of the “Mediapolis”, which a public sphere for people to share their experiences and expressions of daily life (Deuze, 2011). Social Media entertainment provide interpersonal and self-formation use of daily life information communication technologies to entertain others.

Beauty Blogger, Image source from
Beauty Blogger, Image source from
Beauty Blogger, Image source from

The transmission of new modes changes how the how audience watching movie and television through online platforms. Netflix is an internet television network that allows members can be personalized and any digital devices in anytime and anywhere. Smith (2016) states that transmedia convergence has built into the platform likes Netflix to connects viewers with media and enlarge audience number. Transmedia generated the content from different platforms into one story in Netflix. This investigates that film industry has slightly changing due to the techno-social hybrid world with new form of film production and advertising methods.

Watching online internet tv program, image source from
Watching Netflix, image source from

Film industry has faced some challenges and impacts due to the technological affordance provide more platform for audience to access. YouTube has become the trend of advertising and video sharing platforms and this has harm the traditional film industry. The entertainment industry is hurting by the problem of piracy that deal with illegal copies of films on video-streaming site YouTube that robbing the creators’ business model at risk (Anonymous, 2013). This indicated that YouTube is hard to control the unauthorized video or copyright infringement, which is harmful for the whole film industry.

Indiegogo logo, Imaged source from

However, new media also provide a crowdfunding platform for the filmmakers to raise production funding. For example, Indiegogo’s site allows public to raise fund for the filmmaker and one of the movie, The Yellow Ribbon, it not only raise their funding goal and also being one of the challenger of an Oscar. Trigonis (2016) suggests that social media has offers a platform for filmmaker to explain their idea effectively through internet and raise funds, which is not traditionally rely on single investor. This indicates that social media helps the independent filmmaker to have more chance to share that story and easier to gain financial support. New media has positive impacts for independent filmmakers and benefit to film production companies to produce short film for the online advertisement. Advertising not only limited in television broadcasts and more audience watch the advertisement through social media. According to Ritchie (2015), “the 30 second TV shot has morphed into a three-minute online film and create more emotional impact of the advertisement”. The internet was not killing the entertainment industry but it allows more creative adverts can upload to free online platforms to gain more attention. Social media has both positive and negative impacts to the film industry.

To conclude, new media is shaping a brand new film production and advertising culture. Social media has become a powerful platform for audience and film production companies to cooperate. Film industry has faced opportunities and also challenges to produce more production through online platforms. The relationship between industry professional and audience in the field has changed that public can also create their own short film and publish it through online platforms.

Reference List:

Anonymous. 2013. “How YouTube is hurting film industry Social Media.” New Delhi. Accessed March 20, 2017.

Flew, T. 2014. “Chapter 1: Introduction to New Media.” Oxford University Press. Accessed March 25, 2017.

Fuchs, C. 2014. “Social Media: A Critical Introduction.” SAGE Publications Ltd, London. Accessed March 30, 2017.

Grove, E. 2011. “What social Media Really Means to The Film Industry.” Focal Press. Accessed March 27, 2017.

Kirby, D. 2016. “The Role of Social Media in Film Marketing.” Accessed March 28, 2017.

Lessig, L. 2009. Remix: making art and commerce thrive in the hybrid economy, Penguin Press, New York.

Marwick, A. 2013. Integration of film into the mainstream of historical study.

Ritchie, M. 2015. “ How YouTube changed the world.” Accessed March 30, 2017.

Smith, D. 2016. The Netflix Effect: Technology and Entertainment in the 21st Century. Bloomsbury Publishing.

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swanny tsui

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