Converging Through Instagram

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In Convergence Culture, Jenkins discusses the new ways in which convergence has opened doors for participation and collaboration, and social media in general, and especially Instagram, is a prime example of this. Instagram serves as an example of the consumer becoming the producer through making posts, showcasing products, and making a profit that’s sometimes lofty enough for the person to make a living off of it. Jenkins’ ends his conclusion with the sentiment: “Welcome to convergence culture, where old and new media collide, where grassroots and corporate media intersect, where the power of the media producer and the power of the media consumer interact in unpredictable ways…Consumers will be more powerful within convergence culture—but only if they recognize and use that power as both consumers and citizens, as full participants in our culture” (270). In this respect, the old and new media colliding is the exposure companies get through users’ accounts, as well as the use of photos to display something or get a certain idea across. The user, sometimes part of a business already but sometimes just an average Joe who gained a lot of followers because of their content, act as the “grassroots” with the brand or company who they’re endorsing is the corporate media. Examples of this are Instagrams that usually revolve around things like fitness or fashion. One Instagram account by Kayla Itsines (@kayla_itsines) has gained a following of over 4.5 million followers all due to her fitness program that she developed. This is a prime example of convergence.

Jenkins, Henry. Convergence Culture. New York UP, 2006. 251-270. Print.

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1 Comment

  1. I think this is a great example of cultural convergence and the idea of “participatory culture.” Instagram allows people to become more than just viewers, they also become users or part of the “game”. They can “play” with the digital content and be involved within the online world of Instagram. People can share their own creative outlooks while still commenting on others. By posting Instagrams and following accounts, culture is being spread throughout the world. You say that Instagram is the “consumer being the producer” and I think that is a great example of how the view becomes the user. People are able to interact and comment on this social media platform, thus allowing them to spread content to other audiences. Therefore, I think Instagram is a great example of cultural convergence but also technological convergence, for it offers a digital version of a photo album too.

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