Cultural anxiety 2.0

Date

2009-09-01

Advisors

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

ISSN

0163-4437

Volume Title

Publisher

SAGE Publications

Type

Article

Peer reviewed

Yes

Abstract

Since the naming by Tim O’Reilly of ‘Web 2.0’ to signify a new phase in web development and user experience, the ‘2.0’ suffix has been applied in a number of disciplines to indicate a similarly new direction in that field. However, this borrowed branding can fail to transfer the culture of development and original intentions of the ‘Web 2.0’ label, and may therefore be applied without detailed knowledge of its origins. There is a case for examining the technical and cultural meaning of Web 2.0 in order to determine whether a deeper understanding of the history and original context of the label - and the technology behind it - have anything to offer toward a more intelligently informed ‘2.0’ metaphor, or - fundamentally - whether its use in other contexts is meaningful in any case beyond the current phase of the web. To this end we explore the contrast between what may be termed ‘technology-independent’ applications of the metaphorical suffix and those that may be termed ‘technologically-dependent’ in their degree of accuracy to the tenets behind the original concept. Additionally, we explore the drivers behind the rush to adopt the 2.0 suffix, and in particular its relation to contemporary discussion regarding how Media Studies needs to be ‘upgraded’ to Media Studies 2.0 in order to deal with new media.

Description

Keywords

anxiety, web 2.0, internet, open source, culture, media

Citation

Everitt, D. and Mills, S. (2009) Cultural anxiety 2.0. Media, Culture & Society, 31 (5) pp. 749–768

Rights

Research Institute

Media and Communication Research Centre (MCRC)