How the Internet Brought DIY Identity Branding to the Masses

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Remember old-fashioned TV? It’s totally non-interactive. A program ends without a string of comments from viewers updated in real time. No reblogging. No ironic re-appropriation. The line between one who makes content and one who simply consumes it is crystal clear.

The digital age all but erased that line. Viewers interact creatively with the art and entertainment they consume to the point where we are all DIY artists and curators by default. Just as active participation has become a hallmark of digital consumption, showing off one’s taste has become an essential duty of the content maker. Artists and entertainers build and maintain their audiences by doing the cybersocial chores of “liking” and linking and retweeting that the rest of us use to build our online identities.

For those of you who find this subject intriguing, the Digital Media Center and Spiral Cinema have invited a “conceptual entrepreneur,” a digital artist, and social media theorist to participate in a panel discussion on “the connections between social media, re-appropriation and identity branding or ‘identity capital’ in 21st Century Art, and the crossover linking the personal and the public.”

“New Paradigms of Art in the Digital Age” takes place at Mattin Hall on the Johns Hopkins Homewood campus on April 13. It’s free and open to the public. I want to go mostly because I’ve never met a conceptual entrepreneur.

For more information, view the Facebook event page.




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