After an earlier post on the recent OECD report on "The Participative Web", some more interesting studies on media participation, user-generated content, and other aspects of convergence culture:
An April 2007 report by Forrester (based on surveys among U.S. adults) divides the participatory spectrum up in groups (see image):
- Creators (13%): Publish Web pages, publish blogs, upload video to sites like You Tube
- Critics (19%): Comment on blogs, posting ratings and reviews.
- Collectors (15%): Use RSS, tag Web pages
- Joiners (19%): Use social networking sites
- Spectators (23%): Read blogs, watch peer-generated video, listen to podcasts
- Inactives (52%): Other internet users.
Furthermore, a new (April 2007) study (PDF) by the Pew Internet & American Life Project called "Teens, Privacy and Online Social Networks" reports on teens with online profiles (at sites such as MySpace, Facebook, and so on):
- 82% of profile creators have included their first name in their profiles.
- 79% have included photos of themselves.
- 61% have included the name of their city or town.
- 49% have included the name of their school.
- 29% have included their email address.
- 29% have included their last names.
- 2% have included their cell phone numbers.
- 6% of online teens and 11% of profile-owning teens post their first and last names on publicly-accessible profiles.
- 3% of online teens and 5% of profile-owning teens disclose their full names, photos of themselves and the town where they live in publicly-viewable profiles.
UPDATE [May 2007]: and yet another report on participatory culture, media, and social insitutions: this time by UK-based thinktank Demos, titled "Logging On: Culture, Participation and the Web".
What I am left with after reading all of this, is a nagging feeling that the gap between all this wonderful participation and effective (let alone collective) action only seems to be growing. Indeed, perhaps one should be open to theorizing (online) PARTICIPATION not just as a component, but increasingly as a supplement of ACTION.