Last Media Work Book Tour Talk

Well... today is the day! The more or less informal "booktour" in support of Media Work (Polity Press, 2007) is closing down today with a final talk in Sydney, Australia at the Australian Centre for Independent Journalism (if you are around and want to come: University of Technology, Building 2, 15 Broadway, Level 4 (entrance level), Room 11, from 6pm onwards). Perhaps (or rather: hopefully) fittingly the talk orignally would be videotaped by the new online video Fora of the ABC (Australia), which organization I had the pleasure of visiting yesterday. Especially the wonderful folks over at Triple J were amazing - and I have the tshirts to prove it! However, it seems the good people of the ACIJ will do the taping now. Very cool.

All things considered, this touryear was truly amazing. I've had the privilege of talking about the book, the research, and more specifically about what it is really like to work in the global media industries all over the world, including in my home country The Netherlands, my second home the United States, the UK, Italy, Norway, Finland, Australia, and New Zealand, with additional dates scheduled (but unfortunately not always realized or only present in videofeeds) in Switzerland, Canada, Sweden, Brazil, Denmark and Portugal. In a way I feel I could just go on. Indeed, there are plenty more stops on the road, and to this day I am honored to receive regular invites from universities and media organizations to drop in for a chat, which is truly awesome.

But now the book has been out for almost a year, and with the research that went into the book now even older than that, perhaps it is time to move on, focus on new things. To that effect I organized my recent conference keynote at the ARC Centre of Excellence for Creative Industries and Innovation in Brisbane around the basic premise of my forthcoming (...) book for Polity Press, titled Beyond Journalism. Good friend and colleague Axel Bruns has done a stellar job in summarizing that talk, and his summary clearly marks the path beyond media work that I am trying to take: using contemporary social theory and the lessons learned from media workers to conceptualize completely new forms of media organizations. Organization can be seen here both in a cultural (ways of sensemaking practices) and a physical (structural design of the company or workfloor) sense.

Other projects that lie ahead: teaching a graduate course built around understanding media work, interviewing one of my favorite scholars Richard Sennett in New York, reading the new book "The Art of Life" by Zygmunt Bauman, and yes: a short but sweet holiday in Holbox (Mexico).

Hopefully many of the colleagues, students, visitors, and media workers who've been kind enough to attend any one of my presentations this last year and/or who I have had the privilege to meet will keep in touch - either via comments on this blog, at my Facebook profile, or via e-mail. Students who would like to spend some time at Indiana University to work on media work issues are welcome to contact me. Also, if you would like to do a MS, MA, or PhD in this area, please get in touch with me and/or our Director of Graduate Studies - we always have (sometimes funded) positions available and look forward to seeing you in Bloomington...