The Fate of Web 2.0

With the onset and inception of online social media in the mid-2000s, the concept of the more user friendly Web 2.0 became far more profitable.  Jenkins in this reading goes on to describe the phenomena of Web 2.0 as a means of interfacing between the internet user and the producer that would serve to promote digital collectivism.  Web 2.0 essentially consists of websites where there is an abundance of interactions and input between a creator of content and the consumer of content as to the creative process. Sites such as the modern YouTube both promote and somehow discourage Web 2.0 processes. By having the user being able to upload videos, and allowing commentary on them, it allows for the producer to gain feedback and make improvements, however, with uploading content there exists a greater risk of having it taken down due to copyright infringement. There are many that argue that the constant threat of companies trifling over copyright law leave little to no room for creativity and places the concept of Web 2.0 at risk. Some of the benefits of Web 2.0 which I’ve seen include the social media sites most of us enjoy such as Facebook and Twitter, however, with Web 2.0 has come an infringement of companies upon user freedoms. Jenkins points out in the reading that automatic tools for the control of content has limited the freedoms of users in order to protect its own skin, stating that

Unaware of the decision, many uploaders wondered whether they were encountering technical difficulties (Arrington 2009), while some were enraged over market forces intruding on their user-created content. One user wrote, “How does a song playing in the background of a slideshow about colonial reenacting unit harm anyone — least of all Warner Music Group?” (quoted in M. Campbell 2009). Meanwhile, others mused that their use of the audio tracks added value for the music industry: “If we can use it then that would probably get more people to listen to the audio. It’s pretty much like us helping the artist, right?” (quoted in M. Campbell 2009). (Jenkins, Spreadable Media, 51)


I feel very much the same way as the uploaders, and I find it particularly annoying that YouTube must cater towards Warner Music Group and take down or mute videos for trivial real-life happenstance such as a song playing in the background. This limits creativity, and I believe that instead of being taken down, Warner could take advantage of these videos and think of the music much like product-placement advertisement in movies. If YouTube could simply learn to better assert itself on the Internet and better negotiate with Warner Music and other companies it does business with and reassert internet freedom. When I witness such a travesty of informational freedom, I wonder if all of Web 2.0 is to succumb to the same fate. The corporations of modern America have slowly been asserting control over information, and it greatly concerns me. The more that sites such as Youtube and Facebook cater towards and depend upon corporations, the worse off that it will be for the future of media and Web 2.0 in general.

Protests against WMG and it’s hold over Youtube have been common.

And so ends my Blogposting days forever!! 😀

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