Pop culture leads participatory culture

In Convergence Culture, Henry Jenkins says: “Our workplaces have become more collaborative; our political process has become more decentered; we are living more and more in knowledge cultures based on collective intelligence. Our schools are not teaching  what it means to live and work within such knowledge communities; but popular culture may be doing so.”

I have suggested before that participatory culture is not only an American thing, but is alive and well in developing countries. The news below confirms that, as well as Jenkins’ proposition that pop culture often moves a society towards behaving as a participatory culture. This is not a bad thing, because when we ask our learners or citizens to be participatory then they’ve been prepped in some way already.

The Star reported that DStv, the main pay TV service in South Africa, will soon be rolling out a new youth station, called Vuzu, aimed at “technically savvy 18-to-24-year-olds with a predilection for engaging viewing, combined with audience interactivity centred round MXit, MMS, SMS and the internet.”

According to channel director, Yolisa Phahle: “We can’t predict the response (to Vuzu), but we are hoping (audiences) will voice their opinions and give us feedback.”

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