From “multi-screen” to “trans-media” uses


by Fabien Granjon , published on 7.07.2009

These last few years, the audiovisual sector has been shaken by the emergence of new technologies, networks and digital services. Upstream, they displace the organization of the cultural industries market, downstream, they restructure consumption practices. Digital technology is leading a number of transformations in terms of cultural practices.

For example, it offers highly increased access to the content: the multiplication of broadcasting services, development of peer-to-peer, etc. It also multiplies the time and spaces of viewing, notably through the proliferation of equipment and service offers: computers, portable media players, vodcast, VoD, pay-per-view, etc.

Computers and screens from different communication tools (mobile phones, pocket PCs, etc) now complement the classic television screen. Today, they’re widely present in households, public and professional environments, interconnected/customized and linked to the Internet, the communicating tools are opening new paths both for culture and for different ways of communicating. Furthermore, the new uses are changing the relationships of audiences to audiovisual content (needs, expectations, tastes, etc) and the way they are consumed, by combining them in complex and heterogeneous repertoires.

In the audiovisual domain, the model of broadcasting programs consumed on a TV screen remains the most current practice, however, we are noticing an increasingly frequent switch of certain activities to computer screens or mobile phones. These complementary uses (UGC, catch-up TV, etc), are particularly sought after by a younger audience (digital natives) for whom “trans-media” is a potential that they are using everyday. Multi-screen usage, de-linearization and social networks all play a part in remapping audio-visual consumption practices, making them both more individualized and more communal.

If you want to learn more: MELODI Seminar (Medias & Loisirs audiovisuels) : here

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author Fabien Granjon

Fabien Granjon est sociologue au sein du laboratoire Sociology and Economics of Networks and Services (SENSE) à Orange Labs