For the past year, Cunningham and Craig have been mapping the fundamental dynamics at play in the challenges to, and changes in, screen entertainment (‘Hollywood’) occasioned by a proto-industry (‘social media entertainment’) facilitated by communications technologies (the new digital platforms), primary strategies of communication as much as content (intense interactivity), and driven by an ethos of community (an ecology where fans, subscribers and supporters directly constitute the communities which trigger the sustainability of content creator careers). Hence - communitainment.
They have conducted over 100 interviews with executives at most of the major global platforms, including YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and Snapchat, premiere and diverse content creators like Rhett and Link, Hank Green, Ingrid Nilsen, Fredde Wong, plus dozens of agents, publicists, business strategists, and managers working for numerous intermediaries, e.g., multichannel networks, talent and PR agencies, and third party data firms. They are continuing this research globally, including fieldwork in India, China, and across Europe.
They spoke about thier cutting edge work-in-progress research at our Lab.
As a build up to the event, we experimented with our first ever Ask Me Anything with Professor David Craig on Twitter. Questions poured in from all over. We have put together a list of the top 10 answers in a blogpost. Read it here.