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Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide

3.86  ·  Rating details ·  3,647 ratings  ·  137 reviews
Convergence Culture maps a new territory: where old and new media intersect, where grassroots and corporate media collide, where the power of the media producer and the power of the consumer interact in unpredictable ways.

Henry Jenkins, one of America's most respected media analysts, delves beneath the new media hype to uncover the important cultural transformations that a
Hardcover, 308 pages
Published August 1st 2006 by New York University Press (first published 2006)
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Mar 29, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: The frustrated goodreader, "Pop culture" fans and detractors; hermeneutics junkies; assorted others

I joined Goodreads at the behest of a student in 2007. I teach lit. I get a chance daily to read and comment on reading with a circle of smart, engaged readers; I also am supposed to write about my reading, and connect with other readers and writers professionally. Why, I asked this student, would I want to get on a "social networking site for book geeks"? What on earth would be useful--or fun--when my every day is neck-deep in books an
Jun 14, 2020 marked it as to-read
Shelves: phd
Is this where it all started, what we have now. A quote from this book:

In the spring of 2004, a short video, edited together out of footage from newscasts and Donald Trump’s hit TV show, The Apprentice (2004), was circulating across the Internet. Framed as a mock preview for The Apprentice, the narrator explains, “George W. Bush is assigned the task of being president. He drives the economy into the ground, uses lies to justify war, spends way over budget, and almost gets away with it until the
Mar 22, 2014 rated it really liked it
Jenkins discusses the current convergence culture that media is a part of. How the media consumers havs become producers, and consume on their own terms. How fans of popular culture and literature write their own fan fiction and the copywright laws are challenged. How people become editors of online magazines before the age of 14. How people use photoshop to voice their opinions before a government election. These grassroots collide with the corporate media, which has to adjust to the consumers ...more
Oct 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016
Henry Jenkins is one of my favourite media scholars. After reading many excerpts from his works over the course of my undergrad, I decided to purchase Convergence Culture with an eye towards potentially using some of its concepts in my graduate work.

I really enjoy Jenkins' writing because it is so clear and accessible. It isn't bogged down with academic jargon or cryptic syntax, and he defines new terms he introduces clearly. I also love that he uses contemporary case studies to illustrate his c
Oct 08, 2008 rated it really liked it
I always like Henry Jenkins and this book is no exception. He does a good job of exploding the one-device idea of convergence and paying attention to the social and cultural processes around convergence and participatory culture without getting too frothy. The first few chapters which examine the role of fan communities and corporations' alternate stances on them were pretty good in outlining the punitive/"collaborative" stances that companies (and different entities within one conglomerate) hav ...more
Jun 28, 2012 rated it it was amazing
The best book on Transmedia around. In fact, the bible.
Jan 28, 2011 rated it liked it
I read this book for a class, and yet I still managed to like it! Obviously, any book written about TV/internet/media is going to be outdated almost before it is published, but that didn't diminish many points about where we have been and where we are going. It was kind of like a glimpse back in time, but with enough insight to still have some relevance today. ...more
Apr 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
I used to really hate this book, but a re-read has softened some of the edges of my dislike. I still think that Jenkins is too optimistic in his vision for a democratic mediascape built around viewer/audience participation, but I appreciate more now his knowing defiance of dystopian stereotypes. The theories that he uses to guide us through the various situations that he examines in each chapter are still remarkably useful, even if the exact content maybe hasn't aged particularly well. I was sur ...more
May 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
Some interesting thoughts from the conclusion.
(view spoiler)
Ellen Johnson
Apr 02, 2009 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: folks invested in media
If you like pop culture and want to learn from media trends and changes you will find this book interesting. Most interesting is the concept of knowledge communitites. A knowledge community is any group of people who through a commom interest want to gather their knowledge to socialize, learn, investigate. Of importance to a knowledge group is the process of learning, gahtering data, decyphering intelligence, and drawing conclusions from this process. The author uses the example of Surivior Spoi ...more
Nov 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
Great book - Jenkins stuff on narrative is always a wild ride - just a shame the cover sucks so bad. It looks like a f*cking XMBC overlay.
Aug 25, 2009 rated it liked it
This book is strong in media theory but I did not enjoy the author's choice of case studies.

Jenkins defines the convergence culture as a place "where old and new media collide, where grassroots and corporate media intersect, where the power of the media producer and the power of the media consumer interact in unpredictable ways." He uses fan culture to demonstrate the emerging power of the media consumer, specifically fan culture around Survivor, American Idol, The Matrix, Star Wars, and Harry
Jul 30, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: librarians, writers, people interested in pop culture and/or copyright
It covers a lot of pop culture stuff, which keeps it a fun read, but the concepts he uses them to illustrate are really fascinating- How does writing fan fiction connect writers from different backgrounds and encourage a communal approach to editing and fair use copyright laws? How do fan forums devoted to figuring out a TV show build group-based knowledge instead of individual-based knowledge? How should companies try to control or feed off of the interest people have in their content? How will ...more
Morgan Podraza
Jul 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
Jenkins expertly pulls together an interesting range of media and media communities in his analysis of convergence culture--the processes through which media producers and media consumers intersect to both revise old and create new relationships among media types. Though this book would primarily appeal to an academic audience, I appreciated Jenkins' efforts to make the text accessible and engaging to a more general audience. ...more
Andy Oram
Aug 16, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: politics, history
I'm not convinced that the incidents of consumer involvement cited by Jenkins have become mainstream, but it's fascinating to see that the growth of Internet-based, crowdsourced art forms--which I'm convinced will became a major force--are not done in isolation from mainstream media but are echoed in those media. ...more
Nelson Zagalo
The book that first defined the concept of "Transmedia Storytelling", but that's it, nothing else here to invest your time. ...more
Anthony Salazar
Nov 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is such a good book! Anyone interested in media and culture should read this -- especially chapter four: "Quentin Tarantino's Star Wars? Grassroots Creativity Meets the Media Industry." ...more
Chris Williams
Jun 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
some of it is out of date now, but it's interesting to see how prescient Jenkins was about how our cultural conversation would evolve. ...more
Cụt Chim
May 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Good book
Mike Putnam
Sep 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
Still a great read. I can’t imagine how he would update it if he went back one more time.
Yifat Shaik
Jun 03, 2020 rated it liked it
interesting read but aged a lot
Jun 14, 2007 rated it really liked it
Thoughtful and thought-provoking look at how new media is changing the ways in which we relate to old media. I found it much more engaging than the more academic articles in Fans Bloggers and Gamers: Media Consumers in a Digital Age -- I was even entertained, enough that I could read it while traveling. One of the things I appreciate about Henry Jenkins is that he writes about the Internet without either glorifying or demonizing it, and that he also looks at older media with a clear eye as well; ...more
Feb 28, 2009 rated it liked it
Due in part to his book Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide (2006), Henry Jenkins is being touted as the Marshall McLuhan of the 21st Century. However, whether or that is a fair comparison is a matter better left to those who better understood The Medium is the Massage.

Media analyst Jenkins uses this book as a platform to examine what, exactly, is really happening to culture at large when new media and technologies appear. Jenkins grounds his analysis in a variety of specific (a
Julie Bozza
I first discovered Henry Jenkins when I read Textual Poachers: Television Fans and Participatory Culture all those years ago. As an active fan, it was glorious stuff to find such an intelligent and insightful book dealing sympathetically (even enthusiastically) with fandom.

Between then and now, for some strange reason I haven't devoured Jenkins' every word... Possibly because I feared that anything else could only be a let-down? :-) Foolish notion, that! :-D

I very much enjoyed this book which de
Dec 17, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I can't recommend this book highly enough. Although the typos and type-setting problems made me want to tear my hair out at times, that should be blamed on NYU Press, not Jenkins. This book is really a must-read for anyone who plans to be involved in education, media, business, parenting, writing, entertainment, government, and/or pretty much any other field in the 21st century. Jenkins assessment of current trends had me nodding my head enthusiastically, feeling like my eyes had been opened. He ...more
May 15, 2007 rated it liked it
Tricky thing, relationships between culture and politics. Calling himself a “critical utopian,” Jenkins ascribes all kinds of power to “consumption communities,” or fans. He sees collective meaning-making among fans as beginning to change our institutions, from advertising and entertainment industries to the military, law, and politics – and he sees these changes as fruitful, powerful, and encouraging. Pulling out several case studies in popular culture (American Idol, Survivor, Harry Potter, Th ...more
Jan 30, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I logged on to Goodreads with the intention of labeling Henry Jenkins my new academic crush, only to find that someone's already done so. Eerie.

Anyway, Jenkins is a cultural theorist who often works with modern popular fan culture, which is a surprisingly small field considering the strange psychology at work and the vast amounts of people in this media-saturated society who take place in some sort of fan group activity, whether it be book clubs and discussing American Idol or roleplaying and wr
Candy Wood
This interesting book defines convergence culture with chapters on Survivor, American Idol, The Matrix, Star Wars, and Harry Potter, all showing how media consumers are becoming active participants in the creation of texts. It's a strong argument for an emphasis on media literacy in schools as well as for adults to whom many of the electronic platforms are foreign (or even abhorrent). I especially liked Jenkins's comparison of the "transmedia storytelling" of The Matrix--films, games, comics, We ...more
I liked the premise of this book and I found the overall argument to be both interesting and, with some exceptions at the end where Jenkins tries to provide a voice for the future, persuasive.
What follows is not a review of the book, it's an observation.

If you're writing a book about popular culture, even for an academic audience, you might want to assume that some of your readers--while probably also academics--are what one might call huge nerds. Not that you have to write "for" them, but you s
amylea clemons
Apr 27, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Fandom
Jenkins' book is a celebration of all things internet-y, and rightly so. While he is at times too optimistic about the present and future of "convergence" and online interaction, that optimism is usually needed to quell the forces of all those people out there telling us that "media" is a waste of time, for people with too much time on their hands, for nerds, for hegemonic mind control, etc. Jenkins is also a touch too homogenous in his assumptions: he seems to imagine a world full of middle cla ...more
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