Aaltodoc publication archive (Aalto University institutional repository)
School of Business | Department of Communication | Finnish Business Communication | 2013
Thesis number: 13363
Understanding media consumption in the digital age - social dimensions of everyday practices of entertainment
|Title:||Understanding media consumption in the digital age - social dimensions of everyday practices of entertainment|
|Year:||2013 Language: eng|
|Department:||Department of Communication|
|Academic subject:||Finnish Business Communication|
|Index terms:||viestintä; communication; talouselämä; economic life; digitaalitekniikka; digital technology; media; media; viihde; entertainment; kulutus; consumption; kuluttajakäyttäytyminen; consumer behaviour|
|Key terms:||theory of social practices, consumption, entertainment media, everyday life, rituals, Spotify, YouTube|
Objectives of the study
The purpose of this study is to understand practices and rituals of people's everyday entertainment media consumption in the digital age. The study adopts a rather new paradigm in media and consumption studies and shifts the focus from exploring media as texts and symbolic messages to studying media as practices. A practice-theoretical approach from social sciences is applied to analyze the practices of reading blogs, magazines and newspapers, using social media, watching television and listening to music, the analytical focus being on the two last-mentioned. The study aims to express the dynamic nature of entertainment media practices and further reveal the shared understandings and taken for granted realities which underpin these practices.
This study was conducted with qualitative research methods. Small group of 14 Finnish consumers between the age of 23 and 30 were asked to produce a diary for two days reflecting on their entertainment media consumption behavior. After this personal interviews were conducted following a semi-structured manner. Transcribed interviews and diaries were analyzed as cultural texts with theory-driven content analysis.
The main findings of this study reflect existing literature. The study indicates that media consumption practices are mainly subconscious, practiced through routines and habits and linked to certain contexts. The study further underlies the importance of social dimensions of media consumption. It suggests that while amusement purposes are important drivers behind consumers' media choices, the emphasis should be on understanding media practices especially from the perspective of social interaction. The study also reveals that practices and their constituent elements are highly dynamic in respect of entertainment media and they are under a constant pressure of change. The study suggests that although some symbolic representations and meanings towards "family television" are being challenged consumers still value the role of more traditional media in their lives.
Master's theses are stored at Learning Centre in Otaniemi.