Television is happening: Methodological considerations for capturing digital television reception

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The more fragmented that engagements with the media become, the more important it is to understand changing audience practices for theories of social shaping. However, capturing the ways in which audiences respond to television is challenging when current technology makes new demands on the viewer: digital television packages offer 'interactive choices coterminous with computer interfaces. This article proposes a new methodology and demonstrates the kind of data that it makes available for studying digital television audiences. It suggests adapting the traditional metaphor of 'flow and combining an understanding of television-as-text with television-as-technology to explore the social contexts of new textual possibilities against the backdrop of claims made about 'new media. This is achieved by allowing the phenomenological aspects of television to inform an empirical study of television in sociocommunicative contexts. Locating mediated communication within everyday social interaction invites questions about what is new about the social shaping of the digital TV interface.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)485-506
Number of pages22
JournalEuropean Journal of Cultural Studies
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2007


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