[ISEA2011] Panel: Dan Dixon & Jonathan Dovey (chairs) – Pervasive Media: Practice, Value, Culture

Panel Statement

Chair Per­sons: Dan Dixon & Jonathan Dovey
Pre­sen­ters: Con­stance Fleu­riot & Tim Kind­berg

Per­va­sive media is a new and de­vel­op­ing field; com­mis­sion­ers, brands, clients, fund­ing bod­ies often have dif­fi­culty grasp­ing its po­ten­tial. Very few media pro­fes­sion­als, let alone mem­bers of the pub­lic, un­der­stand what Per­va­sive Media is, or could be­come. We are at a new fron­tier. New, per­va­sive, ubiq­ui­tous and mo­bile tech­nolo­gies promise us an ever more con­nected world and the pos­si­bil­ity to ac­cess ever more de­tailed in­for­ma­tion about con­text. Al­though these promises con­tain dras­tic changes to media and tech­nol­ogy, they don’t en­gage with the nec­es­sary changes to the prac­tices of media pro­duc­tion, dis­tri­b­u­tion, tech­nol­ogy cre­ation and the com­mer­cial and prac­ti­cal re­al­i­ties that could make these promises a re­al­ity. These will be dras­ti­cally game chang­ing; cre­at­ing new busi­ness pos­si­bil­i­ties, whilst mak­ing oth­ers ob­so­lete. These promises, and changes, will be crit­i­cally ad­dressed dur­ing this panel. Per­va­sive ex­pe­ri­ences also re­quire a new, and sig­nif­i­cantly more di­verse, set of skills to im­ple­ment. This in­cludes a wide va­ri­ety of media pro­duc­tion, tech­ni­cal skills and busi­ness acu­men. How­ever at this pe­riod of de­vel­op­ment prac­ti­tion­ers from widely vary­ing fields in art, de­sign, and tech­nol­ogy find lit­tle time, or com­mon ground, to re­flect on their prac­tice. This ses­sion will draw on re­sults from work­shops and events where the pan­el­lists have pro­vided space for re­flec­tion and dis­cus­sion amongst prac­ti­tion­ers in this emer­gent field. There are new, and dif­fer­ent, re­la­tion­ships be­tween de­sign­ers, com­mis­sion­ers and those using these new ex­pe­ri­ences. New equa­tions for value are emerg­ing, which are dif­fer­ent from those within more tra­di­tional medi­ums. What is the value, in per­va­sive ex­pe­ri­ences, to all these dif­fer­ent stake­hold­ers? Why is it worth doing, what does every­one get out of it and why do they enjoy it? The dis­cus­sions will be fun­da­men­tally grounded in the ecolo­gies of value that pro­vide per­spec­tive on these is­sues. This panel is as­sem­bled from the net­work of re­searchers and prac­ti­tion­ers who pro­vide prac­ti­cal and the­o­ret­i­cal per­spec­tives to The Per­va­sive Media Stu­dio. The Stu­dio is an or­gan­i­sa­tion that cre­ates space and op­por­tu­ni­ties for this emer­gent field of per­va­sive media, en­cour­ag­ing col­lab­o­ra­tion across bound­aries, ex­per­i­men­ta­tion, re­flec­tion and analy­sis. It draws in a di­verse com­mu­nity of artists, cre­ative com­pa­nies, tech­nol­o­gists and aca­d­e­mics.

  • Dan Dixon is a Senior Lecturer in Creative Technologies at the University of the West of England, UK, where he runs their degree course in Web Design. His research revolves around the way people interact with technology and specifically the space where digital gaming and the real world mix. Currently he is working on a PhD, entitled Playing with Reality, which examines the cultural and aesthetic aspects of the nearly indefinable field of Pervasive Gaming. He is also involved in projects on gamification, augmented reality and location based gaming. Prior to moving to academia he worked in the we industry and had roles as a senior consultant with social software company Headshift, product manager for the BBC’s online communities and production director for new media agency Syzygy.   dcrc.org.uk
  • Prof. Jon Dovey has re­cently been ap­pointed to the new Fac­ulty of Cre­ative Arts at Uni­ver­sity of the West of Eng­land, UK, with a view to rais­ing the pro­file of media re­search there. Since join­ing UWE he has es­tab­lished the Dig­i­tal Cul­tures Re­search Cen­tre; in­ter­fac­ing in­dus­try and acad­e­mia and based at the Per­va­sive Media Stu­dio. Jon is a lead­ing re­searcher in the field of in­ter­ac­tive media and gam­ing and spent the first 15 years of his work­ing life in video pro­duc­tion, work­ing through the early years of Chan­nel Four as a re­searcher, ed­i­tor and even­tu­ally as Pro­ducer. He worked prin­ci­pally in doc­u­men­tary and ex­per­i­men­tal video, co found­ing orig­i­nal scratch artists Go­rilla Tapes in 1984. His video pro­jects gained in­ter­na­tional dis­tri­b­u­tion and recog­ni­tion and have now taken their place in the doc­u­mented his­to­ries of UK Video Art. After mov­ing to Bris­tol in 1990 he worked at the Wa­ter­shed Media Cen­tre for two years be­fore teach­ing at the Uni­ver­sity of Ply­mouth in 1992 and then at both the Uni­ver­sity of the West of Eng­land School of Cul­tural Stud­ies and the Uni­ver­sity of Bris­tol. As Head of the De­part­ment of Drama at Bris­tol Uni­ver­sity he pi­loted a £13m re­de­vel­op­ment through Uni­ver­sity plan­ning stages. He is Knowl­edge Trans­fer Fel­low at the the Per­va­sive Media Stu­dio 2010-2011 and is re­search­ing the the Aes­thet­ics and Value of Per­va­sive Media in­no­va­tions.
  • Dr Constance Fleuriot is a Research Associate at the Digital Cultures Research Centre, University of the West of England, based in the Pervasive Media Studio in Bristol, UK. She is working with Professor Jon Dovey on an AHRC funded Knowledge Transfer Fellowship investigating the language, aesthetics and value of pervasive media, attempting to capture the emerging field of practice around the pervasive media studio and what the new business models might be. She has a lengthy involvement with innovative technologies, both in her own arts practice and also as one of the principal investigators on the Mobile Bristol Project, investigating the social impact of emerging pervasive and mobile technologies. After Mobile Bristol she founded featherhouse, an independent family collective of digital, social and pervasive media consultants, which in 2010 launched fashionpopcorn.com, a new network for creative people working in film, fashion and digital media. Constance has worked as a consultant in user research and locative media design for clients in industry and education, facilitating location-based mixed-media projects with a variety of user communities. Her current interests encompass exploring ethical issues associated with pervasive technology, including the accessibility of production and consumption of pervasive applications, and where romantic fiction might fit into all of this. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts