Digital Media Research Centre - DMRCWorld-leading research for a creative, inclusive and fair digital media environment

Digital Media Research Centre - DMRCWorld-leading research for a creative, inclusive and fair digital media environment
Digital Media
Research Centre
                World-leading research for a creative,
                inclusive and fair digital media environment


Digital Media Research Centre - DMRCWorld-leading research for a creative, inclusive and fair digital media environment
Digital Media
         Research Centre

Digital Media Research Centre
Queensland University of Technology
515, Z1 Musk Avenue
Kelvin Grove, QLD, 4059
+61 (0)7 3138 3556
Digital Media Research Centre - DMRCWorld-leading research for a creative, inclusive and fair digital media environment

2-3     1.0   DIRECTOR'S REPORT





9-14    6.0   2017 RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS


17-28   8.0   KEY OUTCOMES
Digital Media Research Centre - DMRCWorld-leading research for a creative, inclusive and fair digital media environment
1.0  DIRECTOR'S                                                Renewing our purpose and
      REPORT                                                    structure
                                                                Between late 2017 and early 2018, we formalised a new
                                                                mission for the DMRC:
                                                                   World-leading research for a creative, inclusive
In early April 2018, the DMRC will reach its third                 and fair digital media environment
anniversary—a good moment to take stock of our
progress and renew our momentum. We have                        We deliver on this mission by working together and with
achieved a lot in our first three years: we’re now well-        external partners on innovative and impactful projects.
established at QUT and well-recognised externally,              Accordingly, we have transitioned away from a program-
we’ve got runs on the board with strong funding                 based ‘group’ structure toward a flat, lean, and action-
and publication outcomes and a number of strong                 oriented model, organised around three priorities:
industry partnerships, and we host a dynamic,                   1. creativity & innovation
engaged and supportive research culture of which we
                                                                2. diversity & inclusion
can be justly proud. But we can do more!
                                                                3. trust & fairness
As we go forward into our fourth year, we aim to become
more purpose-driven and engaged with the world outside          These three priorities represent our aspirations for the kind
the university, and we’re actively looking to generate          of digital media environment that we’d like to promote and
significant impacts from our research. As an important          help build. But each of them also stands in for significant
next step, we’ve refreshed our mission and renewed our          problems and challenges affecting the digital media
structure—and these changes are outlined below.                 industries, and are reflected in public concerns.

                                                                In addressing these challenges, we need to undertake high-
                                                                quality research that generates deep understanding, as well
                                                                as engaging in direct intervention and external advocacy.

                                                                Creativity and innovation
                                                                We investigate the settings and dynamics that foster
                                                                vibrant and internationally competitive local creative content
                                                                industries; recognising that creativity and innovation
                                                                can come from anywhere, including from marginalised
                                                                communities and non-expert creators. We trace the
                                                                emergence and dynamics of new digital media and
                                                                entertainment industries and business; and we map the
                                                                skills, identities and labour dynamics associated with
                                                                creative work in these sectors.
I would like to take this opportunity to sincerely thank
all our members, students, partners and supporters for
their contributions to the centre’s research and outreach       Inclusion and diversity
in the past year. I especially acknowledge the leadership
                                                                We conduct basic and problem-solving research into
and commitment of the DMRC leadership team: Michael
                                                                the challenges of population-wide digital access, as well
Dezuanni (Associate Director), Peta Mitchell (Research
                                                                as helping to embed throughout society the capability
Training Coordinator), and Tess McGlone (Centre
                                                                and skills to operate effectively as consumers and media
Coordinator), and thanks also to Nicki Hall (Project Officer)
                                                                professionals in the digital media environment. We map
for her help putting this annual report together. I’m looking
                                                                the social and cultural diversity of digital culture and the
forward to working with you all again in 2018.
                                                                inclusiveness of platforms; recognising not only that multiple
                                                                forms of diversity need to be considered in governance and
                                                                inclusion, but also that social diversity is a vibrant source of
                                                                creativity and innovation.

Digital Media Research Centre - DMRCWorld-leading research for a creative, inclusive and fair digital media environment

Trust and fairness
We undertake analysis and advocacy that promotes the
                                                                 2.0 	STRUCTURE AND
transparent and just governance of the media environment,               MEMBERSHIP
which is populated by a diverse array of local and
international media organisations and platforms. We seek
to promote a media environment that enhances social                  The DMRC is based in the Creative Industries
cohesion, that treats participants fairly, and that takes            Faculty’s School of Communication with active
seriously the role of digital media platforms in curating our        participation from researchers in the Law and
culture, and in coordinating our political communication             Education Faculties. Led by Centre Director
and social interactions. We investigate how deep social              Jean Burgess, the Centre has a tiered model of
and historical questions (like democracy and trust) are              membership which includes:
challenged by new technological developments (from                     • Centre Members (including Chief Investigators)
algorithmic news curation to the blockchain), and explore              • Affiliated Researchers
the new models of media practice, regulation and
                                                                       • Higher Degree by Research (HDR) students
governance that might emerge from these developments.

To each of these areas, and across all our projects, we
                                                                 The Chief Investigators, along with the Centre Director,
bring distinctive research capabilities, leading-edge research
                                                                 comprise the Centre’s senior leadership team, and are
infrastructure and research training programs, and a strong
                                                                 expected to have substantive participation in Centre
support structure for external engagement.
                                                                 research projects, research training programs, external
                                                                 grant applicants and public-engagement Centre activities.
                                                                 In 2017 the DMRC’s Chief Investigators were:
Centre Membership update                                         •   Professor Jean Burgess     •   Dr Tim Highfield
During 2017, DMRC Chief Investigator Ruth Bridgstock                 (Centre Director)          •   Distinguished Professor
moved to the University of South Australia where she
                                                                 •   Associate Professor            Stuart Cunningham
is now Dean: Academic and Professor: Learning and
                                                                     Michael Dezuanni               Professor Terry Flew
Teaching, Education Arts and Social Sciences.                                                   •
                                                                     (Associate Director)
We have also farewelled two of our Vice Chancellor’s                                            •   Professor Brian McNair
                                                                 •   Dr Emma Baulch
Research Fellows, both of whom have gone on to excellent                                        •   Associate Professor Peta
international positions:                                         •   Professor Greg Hearn           Mitchell
•   Tim Highfield has taken up a position as Assistant           •   Associate Professor Ruth   •   Dr Nicolas Suzor
    Professor, New Media at the University of Amsterdam              Bridgstock
                                                                                                •   Professor Patrik Wikstrom
•   Emma Baulch has been appointed Associate Professor,          •   Professor Axel Bruns
    Communication and Media Studies at Monash University
    Malaysia                                                     The Centre Members are QUT researchers who are
                                                                 primarily and actively engaged in the DMRC’s projects and
Our warmest congratulations to Ruth, Tim and Emma on             programs. In 2017, the Centre Members (in addition to the
their new positions.                                             Chief Investigators) were:
                                                                 •   Associate Professor John   •   Dr Kim Osman
At the start of 2018 we welcomed a new staff member in
                                                                     Banks                          Dr Kylie Pappalardo
the School of Communication, Brendan Keogh, who was                                             •

also awarded a prestigious ARC Discovery Early Career            •   Dr Elija Cassidy           •   Dr Mark Ryan
Researcher Award (DECRA); and there will be a number of          •   Professor Susan Danby      •   Dr Kevin Sanson
new academic staff joining the School of Communication
                                                                 •   Dr Tim Highfield               Dr Christine Spurgeon
and DMRC during 2018. On behalf of the DMRC, our                                                •

warmest welcome to these new colleagues, and best                •   Associate Professor        •   Dr Aljosha Schapals
wishes to the DMRC community for the coming year!                    Stephen Harrington
                                                                                                •   Dr Pauline Zardo
                                                                 •   Dr Brenda Moon

Professor Jean Burgess, Centre Director
19 March 2018

                                                                        DIGITAL MEDIA RESEARCH CENTRE – 2017 ANNUAL REPORT     3
Digital Media Research Centre - DMRCWorld-leading research for a creative, inclusive and fair digital media environment
The Centre Research Staff employed on DMRC projects             •   Kelly Lewis                   •   Alila Pramiyanti
in 2017 were:                                                   •   Jiajie Lu                     •   Andrew Quodling
•   Irfan Azeezullah            •   Judith Newton
                                                                •   Kerryn Manifold               •   Samantha Ryan
•   Ehsan Dehghan               •   Amber Marshall
                                                                •   Ariadna Matamoros             •   Hannah Louise Spyksma
•   Dr Stefanie Duguay          •   Ariadna Matamoros               Fernández                     •   Jessica Stevens
    Andrew Golledge                 Fernández
•                                                               •   Prue Miles                    •   Kim Stewart
    Nicki Hall                  •   Tess McGlone
•                                                               •   Callum McWaters               •   Chunmeizi Su
    Dr Kirralie Houghton        •   Avijit Paul
•                                                               •   Smith Mehta                   •   Fiona Suwana
    Jacinta Lisec               •   Dr Adam Swift
•                                                               •   Jay Mogis                     •   Naomi Takeifanga
                                •   Jarrod Walczer
                                                                •   Sylvia Ximena Montaña         •   Sonam Tobgye
Affiliated Researchers are QUT Researchers who are                                                •   Miss Portia Vann
actively engaged in collaborative research with the DMRC.       •   Gabriela Monteiro Lunardi
While not necessarily integrated or fully aligned to the                                          •   Jarrod Walczer
                                                                •   Felix Münch
DMRC, they do have complementary research profiles. The                                           •   Yi Wang
DMRC’s Affiliated Researchers in 2017 were:                     •   Zin Mar Myint
                                                                                                  •   Michael Ward
•   Dr Hugh Brown               •   Dr Lesley Hawkes            •   Judy Newton
                                                                                                  •   Alice Witt
•   Professor Ruth Bridgstock   •   Dr Hai Hong Nguyen          •   Rido Parulian Panjaitan
                                                                                                  •   Jing Zeng
•   Dr Christy Collis           •   Dr Sandra Phillips          •   Emma Potter-Hay

•   Dr Angela Daly              •   Associate Professor         In 2017, the DMRC hosted a number of international
•   Associate Professor Molly       Angela Romano               research visitors, including:
    Dragiewicz                  •   Professor Matthew           •   Patricia Aufderheide, School of Communication,
•   Professor Marcus Foth           Rimmer                          American University, Washington DC
•   Dr Donna Hancox             •   Dr Nicholas Russell         •   Hasan Bakhshi, NESTA, UK
                                                                •   Nancy Baym, Microsoft Research, USA
HDR Members are QUT Higher Degree by Research (HDR)
students whose research projects are directly aligned to the    •   Bridget Conor, Kings College London, UK
DMRC and are supervised by a Centre Member (typically           •   Mark Deuze, Faculty of Humanities, University of
as principal supervisor). HDR Members are expected to               Amsterdam
actively participate in research training programs and public   •   Frederik Dhaenens, Ghent University, Belgium
engagement activities. In 2017 the DMRC had 60 HDR
students, made up of 50 PhD students, 6 Doctorate of            •   He Gou, Communication University of China
Creative Industries students and 4 Masters by research          •   Frederic Guerrero-Solé, Universitat Pompeu Fabra,
students. In 2017, the DMRC’s HDR students were:                    Barcelona, Spain
•   Christel Antonites          •   Akhmad Firmannamal          •   Larissa Hjorth, School of Media and Communiation, RMIT
•   Virginia Balfour            •   Rosalie Gillett                 University
•   Jacinta Bubach              •   Sofya Glazunova             •   Yu Hong, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou
•   Malcolm Burt                •   Lisa Harrison               •   Celina Lerner, Universidade Federal do ABC, Brazil
•   Xu Chen                     •   Guy Healy                   •   Noortje Marres, Centre for Interdisciplinary
                                                                    Methodologies, University of Warwick, UK
•   Delfi Chinnappan            •   Rachel Hews
                                                                •   Torill Mortensen, Centre for Interdisciplinary
•   Cameron Cliff               •   Bronwyn Hope
                                                                    Methodologies, University of Warwick, UK
•   Ella Chorazy                •   Matthew Hsu
                                                                •   Paul McDonald, Kings College London, UK
•   Rachel Cobcroft             •   Edward Hurcombe
                                                                •   Jeanette Steemers, Kings College London, UK
•   Bryan Crawford              •   Bondy Kaye
                                                                •   Endah Triastuti, Department of Communications,
•   Ehsan Dehghan               •   Katherine Kirkwood              University of Indonesia
•   Katherina Drinkuth          •   Morag Kobez                 •   Rebekah Willett, University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA
•   Stefanie Duguay             •   Michael Lee
•   Sara Ekberg                 •   Amanda Levido

Digital Media Research Centre - DMRCWorld-leading research for a creative, inclusive and fair digital media environment

3.0 	CENTRE                                               The DMRC Advisory Committee provides advice on the
                                                           strategic direction, performance and impact of the Digital
      GOVERNANCE                                           Media Research Centre. During 2017, the DMRC refreshed
                                                           its Advisory Committee membership to further enhance its
                                                           external engagement and impact. We would like to thank
    The DMRC is led by an Executive Committee,             the Centre’s outgoing Advisory Board for their valuable
    which is responsible for strategic and operational     support, strategic advice and constructive feedback during
    leadership, chaired by the Centre Director. Overall    the centre’s establishment phase. The board members up
    governance of the Centre is provided by the            to mid-2017 were:
    Advisory Committee, who review and monitor the         •   Professor Terry Flew—Assistant Dean Research, Creative
    Centre’s strategic direction and performance.              Industries Faculty, QUT (Chair)
                                                           •   Professor Patrik Wikström—Head of School,
The Centre Director has overall responsibility for the         Communication, Creative Industries Faculty, QUT
operation and strategic direction of the DMRC, and from    •   Professor Helen Klaebe—Dean, Research and Research
January 2017 reports to the Head of School, School             Training, QUT
of Communication. The Centre Director and Chief
Investigators share responsibility for the leadership of   •   Professor Denise Meredyth—Pro Vice Chancellor:
the research programs and the acquittal of the Centre’s        Education, Arts and Social Sciences, University of South
strategic objectives, and collectively comprise the            Australia
Executive Committee, which meets in person every 4–6       •   Professor Julian Thomas—RMIT
weeks on average.                                          •   Professor Rachel Parker—Assistant Dean Research, QUT
In 2017 the Executive Committee members were:                  Business School
•   Professor Jean Burgess (Centre Director and Chair)     •   Professor Michael Rosemann—Executive Director,
                                                               Corporate Engagement, QUT
•   Dr Emma Baulch
                                                           •   Michael McArdle—Director, Office of Research, QUT
•   Associate Professor Ruth Bridgstock
•   Professor Axel Bruns                                   The refreshed DMRC Advisory Committee met for the
•   Distinguished Professor Stuart Cunningham              first time in December. We welcome returning and new
                                                           members and thank them for their engagement with the
•   Associate Professor Michael Dezuanni (Associate        work of the centre:
                                                           •   Professor Terry Flew—Assistant Dean Research, Creative
•   Associate Professor Stephen Harrington                     Industries Faculty, QUT (Chair)
•   Professor Brian McNair                                 •   Professor Patrik Wikström—Head of School,
•   Associate Professor Peta Mitchell (Research Training       Communication, Creative Industries Faculty, QUT
    Coordinator)                                           •   Nicole Buskiewicz—Managing Director, Digital Industry
•   Associate Professor Nicolas Suzor                          Group Inc.
•   Dr Kevin Sanson                                        •   Michelle Carter—Director, Digital Economy and
                                                               Productivity, Queensland Government Department of
•   Professor Patrik Wikström
                                                               Science, Information Technology and Innovation
                                                           •   Professor Bronwyn Harch—Executive Director, Institute
                                                               for Future Environments, QUT
                                                           •   Professor Denise Meredyth—Pro Vice Chancellor, Division
                                                               of Education, Arts and Social Sciences, University of
                                                               South Australia
                                                           •   Jon O’Brien—State Manager, Customer Management
                                                               and Sales, Queensland Enterprise and Government,
                                                           •   John Swinson—Partner, King & Wood Mallesons
                                                           •   Professor Julian Thomas—ECP Director, Social Change,
                                                               Enabling Capability Platforms, RMIT University

                                                                  DIGITAL MEDIA RESEARCH CENTRE – 2017 ANNUAL REPORT      5
Digital Media Research Centre - DMRCWorld-leading research for a creative, inclusive and fair digital media environment
4.0 	ENGAGEMENT AND                                               Social Media Analytics:
      RESEARCH TRAINING                                            Using Data to Understand
                                                                   Public Conversations
    In 2017, the DMRC delivered a vibrant program
    of public events and practical training in research
    into digital media for academics at all levels. This
    included workshops, summer schools, seminars
    and masterclasses built around the Centre’s
    research programs, helping participants to
    acquire an in-depth understanding of emerging
    topics in digital media research, build practical
    skills at the cutting edge of digital methods, and
    engage with external academic and industry

Summer School, 2017
                                                                   Social Media Analytics MOOC Website

                                                                   Our MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) was once again
                                                                   delivered in 2017 on the FutureLearn platform. The course
                                                                   focused on the collection, analysis and visualisation of social
                                                                   media data. Participants in the course chose to analyse a
                                                                   topic that was relevant to their own interests and used three
                                                                   digital tools (TAGS, Tableau and Gephi) to understand how
                                                                   that topic plays out in online conversations on digital media
                                                                   platforms like Twitter. The course ran four times in 2017
                                                                   with a total of 13,442 enrolments, and there are three more
                                                                   course runs planned for 2018. Three-quarters of those
                                                                   people enrolled in the MOOC were educated to at least
Our annual DMRC Summer School was held over the                    undergraduate or masters level. The majority of participants
week of February 6–10th at QUT Kelvin Grove. 37 PhD and            were from the United Kingdom with significant cohorts from
early career researchers from 11 countries and 21 different        the US, India, Australia, Mexico and Brazil.
institutions participated in the 5 day event. In a series
of intensive workshops and masterclasses, participants
learned social media analytics, the app walkthrough
method, and ethnographic approaches to the use of media            DMRC Fridays seminars
technologies in daily life. Sessions also included more
lectorial style discussions, covering key issues around digital
media research including copyright, internet governance,
and research ethics.

The Summer School concluded with a sold-out public event
at the Brisbane Powerhouse in which leading Australian
and international experts discussed the state of digital
media and society in 2017. Panelists discussed the role and
impact of digital media, socially, politically and economically.

Summer School, 2018
The 2018 DMRC Summer School has now also taken
place. Between 5–9 February, 37 participants enjoyed a             Throughout the year, the DMRC ran a series of
series of workshops, clinics and professional development          fortnightly scholarly seminars for the broader media and
sessions including Advanced Social Media Analytics,                communications research community and research
Towards Feminist Digital Media Research Methods,                   methods workshops for HDR students. Seminar topics
Information Visualisation for Text-based Social Data, and          were varied and included: ethics and digital dating cultures;
Wrangling Your Career. The DMRC will continue to host a            Australian consumers’ access to digital media content;
series of high-profile research events throughout 2018.            celebrity death and social media; fake news; 3D printing

Digital Media Research Centre - DMRCWorld-leading research for a creative, inclusive and fair digital media environment

regulation; and social media entertainment on YouTube.
Methods workshops included the app walkthrough method;
                                                                Alumni Profiles
web scraping; Twitter analysis using TCAT and Tableau;
researching the use of media technologies in everyday                                      Dr Stefanie Duguay
life; using focus group interviews to understand children’s                                  During her PhD at the DMRC, Dr
digital media use; and a workshop about online security                                      Stefanie Duguay was selected as
called ‘Encrypt All the Things’. Presentations by visiting                                   one of only three summer interns
scholars included: Understanding LGBT and queer-themed                                       for the Microsoft Research Social
playlists on Spotify; the phenomenon of social bots and                                      Media Collective, a group of
its implications; digital childhoods in China and Australia;                                 social scentists who work
understanding media by looking at games; characterising                                      alongside some of the world’s
social information flows in social networks; and digital                                     best computer science,
sociology.                                                                                   mathematics, and economics
                                                                                             researchers in Cambridge,
                                                                Massachusetts. She collaborated closely with SMC
                                                                members including Tarleton Gillespie, Nancy Baym, and Mary
Research Training                                               Gray on the commercial ‘off-label’ uses of dating apps such
In 2017 the DMRC had 60 HDR students undertaking either         as Tinder, generating new publications and giving a public
a Master of Philosophy (MPhil), Doctor of Philosophy (PhD),     seminar. Stefanie is now Assistant Professor of Data and
or a Doctor of Creative Industries (DCI—for professionals       Networked Publics in the Department of Communication
or practitioners). The majority of our HDRs (87%) were          Studies at Concordia University, Montreal. Her research has
enrolled in a PhD. DMRC members offer regular methods           been published in New Media & Society; Social Media +
workshops throughout the year to QUT staff and students;        Society; Information, Communication & Society; Disability &
run the annual DMRC summer school based at QUT in               Society; and other international, peer-reviewed journals.
February, which attracts a strong international HDR cohort;
and regularly convene methods workshops at international                                   Dr Emma Potter-Hay
conferences, such as the Association for Internet Research
                                                                                            Dr Emma Potter-Hay graduated
(AoIR) annual conference.
                                                                                            in 2017 and was one of the
With the appointment of Peta Mitchell as Research Training                                  first DMRC HDRs to complete
Coordinator for the DMRC and School of Communication                                        an industry/public sector-
in early 2017, we have been refining and streamlining our                                   embedded PhD. Emma’s project
recruitment processes for new HDRs, with an emphasis on                                     was connected to the ARC
increasing the proportion of high-quality international HDR                                 Linkage project ‘Social media
enrolments and prioritising high impact HDR projects that                                   in times of crisis’ (CIs Bruns,
demonstrate strong end-user and industry engagement.                                        Burgess, Flew & Crawford) and
                                                                                            saw her embedded within the
Focusing on these priorities has enabled us to achieve          Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) for two
clear and sustained growth in international enrolments (with    years researching their social media strategies for crisis
international students making up around 40% of the total        communication.
HDR student cohort) and stronger alignment between HDR
projects and the DMRC’s research program.                       Emma is currently employed as a researcher within QUT’s
                                                                Business School, and in her experience, her industry-
In 2018, we aim to build on this strong foundation to further   embedded PhD had personal benefits as well as institutional
enhance industry-engaged research training and to expand        ones: she describes her project as being highly rewarding
and formalise our digital methods workshop program.             on a personal level due to its engaged and applied nature
                                                                as well as beneficial in terms of building stronger networks
                                                                between the university and the public sector.

                                                                     DIGITAL MEDIA RESEARCH CENTRE – 2017 ANNUAL REPORT     7
Digital Media Research Centre - DMRCWorld-leading research for a creative, inclusive and fair digital media environment
QUT Digital Observatory

5.0 	RESEARCH                                                    (TrISMA) is a state-of-the-art, comprehensive infrastructure
                                                                  for the large-scale, continuous tracking of public social
      INFRASTRUCTURE                                              media activities by Australian users. Its nation-specific focus
                                                                  provides a range of unique analytics capabilities. Central
                                                                  to the TrISMA Twitter infrastructure is the Australian Twitter
                                                                  Collection. This gathers tweets from all identified Australian
QUT Digital Observatory                                           accounts on a continuous basis:

                                                                  •   3.7 million Australian Twitter accounts, 2.4+ billion tweets
Research lead: Axel Bruns
                                                                      captured to date
Manager: Marissa Takahashi
                                                                  •   1+ million new tweets per day, from 140,000 daily active
The QUT Digital Observatory (DO) is a new facility hosted by          users
the Institute for Future Environments (IFE) that incorporates
the research data infrastructure developed through DMRC’s         •   Comprehensive map of follower/followee network
TrISMA ARC LIEF project (2014–16) as well as a number                 structure and community clusters
of other infrastructure elements, and consolidates these
under a single umbrella. The DO’s mission is to establish         This enables comprehensive nationwide research
state-of-the-art technical and organisational infrastructure      approaches that advance well beyond the limitations of
for tracking, collecting, and making accessible collections       existing tools and methods: TrISMA researchers are able
of continuous and live digital data that are of interest to       to comprehensively examine user activities within a distinct
researchers independent of their specific topical, thematic,      national communication space, without a need to preselect
or disciplinary orientation. A successful example of the data     only those tweets that contain particular hashtags or
infrastructure built via the TrISMA project was the tracking of   keywords or set up Twitter tracking processes in advance
public communication by Australian users of social media,         of anticipated events. Further, TrISMA’s on-demand data
as well as the production and consumption of online culture       gathering infrastructure for Facebook pages continuously
at large scale, in close to real time, and for the long term.     captures new posts, as well as likes, reactions, comments,
The DO’s existing and planned capabilities provide QUT            and shares of these posts, and likes of comments, for a wide
with significant support for innovative digital media and         variety of Australian Facebook pages. TrISMA also gathers
society research; however, our vision for this facility is to     the available public data on the users posting comments,
engage a wide range of researchers across the university,         likes, reactions, and shares, enabling meaningful userbase
independent of their research interests.                          comparisons and network mapping across posts and
                                                                  pages. Such analytics capabilities provide considerably more
                                                                  reliable information on user activity patterns than comparable
Components of the Digital Observatory                             commercial solutions that act as black boxes generating
TrISMA: Tracking Infrastructure for Social Media                  opaque and untested engagement metrics.
Developed and operated by a consortium of six Australian
universities, led by the QUT Digital Media Research Centre,
the Tracking Infrastructure for Social Media Analysis


                                                                   6.0 	2017 RESEARCH

                                                                   Selected Projects
                                                                   Understanding intermedia information flows in
                                                                   the Australian online public sphere (ARC Future
                                                                   Axel Bruns (DMRC)

Digital Media Observatory (see

Digital Media Observatory
Developed through a DMRC project funded by the Australian
Communications Consumer Action Network (ACCAN),
Australia’s peak body for consumer representation in
communications, the Digital Media Observatory (DMO) tracks
the relative availability of digital media content to Australian
consumers, focussing on download and streaming services. It
identifies available film and television, music, computer games,
and mobile apps content, evaluating three criteria: pricing,
timeliness, and diversity of delivery channel options (including
quality and format choices). These data generate an ongoing
comparison between the Australian and US media markets.
The DMO provides data on how digital media markets are
changing over time. These data help us understand how
markets are co-evolving with changes to media consumption.
The infrastructure provides information on how cultural
production and distribution is changing, how copyright laws
are working, and how well digital markets are operating, and
addresses the question of whether Australians still suffer from    This project investigates the flows of information across
an ‘Australia tax’ where we pay more, wait longer, and have        the contemporary Australian mediasphere, with a particular
less choice than consumers in other countries.                     focus on the role of digital and social media. It observes
                                                                   how the nation responds to the news of the day, how
                                                                   themes and topics unfold, and how interest develop
Australian Music Observatory                                       and decline over time. In doing so, it develops innovative
Developed through a DMRC-led ARC Linkage project                   methodologies for studying online communication at a large
(highlighted under Selected Projects in the following section),    scale and in real time, and marshals an unprecedented
the Australian Music Observatory (AMO) continuously tracks         body of evidence to take a thoroughly ‘big data’ approach
data on Australian music consumption across a range of             to the study of the Australian online public sphere.
media, including radio airplay, recorded music performance
in public venues, and streaming media. It consolidates             In 2017, it focused especially on the dissemination of
these complex and diverse datasets to enable cross-media           news and political information, with dedicated studies of
comparisons and support the tracking of consumption careers        information flows during recent Australian elections, after
for individual tracks and artists. AMO is the only Australian      terrorist attacks in Paris and Brussels, and in response
source of such cross-media consumption data, with a variety        to major political controversies. In addition to these case
of applications in studies of cultural consumption, music          studies, the project has also generated a major new
business analysis, and royalty distribution modelling. It is       monograph on the transformations of news and journalism
developed in partnership with major Australian music industry      in a media ecology that is increasingly connected by social
bodies, including APRA/AMCOS.                                      media: Gatewatching and News Curation: Journalism,
                                                                   Social Media, and the Public Sphere (Peter Lang, 2018),

                                                                        DIGITAL MEDIA RESEARCH CENTRE – 2017 ANNUAL REPORT       9
with further publications on the continued structural          An entertainment-education model for reaching
transformation of the public sphere in this context            young men with sexual health information
planned for 2018 and 2019. A number of recent and              through digital media (ARC Linkage Project)
emerging DMRC projects on the future of journalism, the
dissemination of scholarly work, and the impact of ‘fake       Jean Burgess (DMRC), Kim Osman (DMRC) and
news’ also draw substantially on the research outcomes of      Alan McKee (UTS)
this Future Fellowship project.

The new screen ecology and innovation in
production and distribution (ARC Discovery
Stuart Cunningham (DMRC) and David Craig
(USC Annenberg)

                                                               This project developed an innovative methodology that
                                                               used digital entertainment to reach young men with
                                                               information about healthy sexual development. Rates
                                                               of sexually transmitted infection notifications were rising
                                                               among young people aged 16–25 in Australia, and
                                                               research showed that young men were poorly served with
                                                               information about healthy sexual development. The project
                                                               investigated teenage boys and young men’s digital media
                                                               use, health-seeking behaviours online and also created,
                                                               shared and tracked engagement with a series of comedy
                                                               videos about sex and relationships on social media sites. In
Social media entertainment is a new, emerging industry         collaboration with True Relationships and Reproductive
that sits at the intersection of Hollywood’s entertainment     Health and University of Technology Sydney, DMRC
culture and Silicon Valley’s tech culture. In social media     researchers found that informative comedy videos shared
entertainment, processes of professionalisation and            on social media platforms like YouTube and Facebook are
monetisation of previously amateur content creation are        a good way to engage teenagers and young men with this
underpinning the explosive growth of a lower-budget, more      sexual health information.
diverse and structurally innovative tier of advertising—and    In 2017, the project produced conference papers and
sponsor-supported online content. Just one metric gives a      articles, as well as the final report An entertainment-
sense of the scale of this new industry: in 2017, there were   education model for reaching young men with sexual health
5000 YouTubers with 1 million plus subscribers.                information through digital media (2017) and accompanying
This project has mapped this new industry and its creators:    practitioner user guide.
commercializing and professionalizing social media users
who generate and circulate original content in close
interaction and engagement with their communities on
the major social media platforms as well as offline. The
project has produced a major monograph, Social Media
Entertainment: The new industry at the intersection of
Hollywood and Silicon Valley (forthcoming from New York
University Press), numerous articles and chapters, invited
presentations in six countries, and a series of engagements
with policy and industry actors as they seek to figure out
what this new industry means for them.


Minecraft for Type 1 Diabetes                                  Mobile Indonesians: Social differentiation
                                                               and digital literacies in the 21st century (ARC
Michael Dezuanni and John Banks (DMRC)
                                                               Discovery Project)
                                                               Emma Baulch (DMRC), Jerry Watkins (Western
                                                               Sydney University), and Ariel Heryanto (Monash)

The Minecraft for Type 1 Diabetes project (MCT1) will assist
children with Type 1 diabetes to understand their condition
through the highly innovative approach of using one of
the world’s most popular digital games, Minecraft. The         This is the first dedicated study of the social implications
project is in partnership with Tech Startup Magikcraft, and    of mobile telephony’s recent and rapid popularisation
aims to use the game to immerse children in purposeful         throughout Indonesia. This project studies metropolitan,
play, leading to greater awareness of the need to carefully    urban and rural users to understand how mobile phones
manage blood glaucous levels and food intake. The project      create the new and unexpected social networks which will
also involves partnerships with Diabetes Queensland and        shape tomorrow’s Indonesians.
The Mater Hospital and enables the design and production       In 2017, the DMRC hosted a major dissemination event
of a Minecraft modification and conducting a trial of MCT1     for the project: Digital Transactions in Asia, co-organised
in community settings with children. The project includes      by Baulch and Associate Professor Adrian Athique at The
the development of an educational plan for the use of the      University of Queensland. Publications resulting from the
game and training for health professionals and parents.        research and appearing in 2017/18 include:
In 2017, the MCT1 project received funding from QUT’s          Mobile phones: Advertising, consumerism and class in
‘Innovation and Engagement’ grants scheme which                Ross Tapsell and Edwin Jurriens (Eds.), Digital Indonesia,
enabled our project partner, Magikcraft, to hire team          Singapore: ISEAS
members to begin to design the game modification
and to undertake the coding work necessary to create           The dung beetle and the everyman Cultural Politics 13(2):
a working prototype. Progress was made towards four            202–226
levels of a Minecraft mini-game, with another six levels to
                                                               Baulch E, Watkins, J and Tariq, A (eds) (2018) mHealth in
be developed in 2018. The project was also presented
                                                               Asia: grassroots challenges and practical interventions,
and promoted at several international events including the
                                                               Singapore: Springer
Norwegian Developers’ Conference in Oslo. MCT1 received
media attention, including through the United States’ online
diabetes publication ‘Beyond Type 1’ which has over
one million Facebook followers; and on ABC Queensland
television news.

                                                                   DIGITAL MEDIA RESEARCH CENTRE – 2017 ANNUAL REPORT        11
Regulating internet content through notice-                       Music usage metrics and the future of the
and-takedown (ARC DECRA Fellowship)                               Australian music industry (ARC Linkage Project)
Nicolas Suzor (DMRC)                                              Patrik Wikström and Axel Bruns (DMRC), Dan
                                                                  Hunter (Swinburne), Ramon Lobato (RMIT),
                                                                  Stuart Watters (Nightlife Music), Stephen
                                                                  Green (D-Star Music Delivery), Andrew Harris
                                                                  (Australasian Performing Rights Association)

Governments, private firms, and civil society groups are
increasingly seeking to influence the organisations that
provide internet services to take more responsibility for
content on their networks. Globally, these organisations
                                                                  This project is conducting a comprehensive and systematic
receive millions of requests to remove content posted by
                                                                  examination of changing music consumption patterns
users each month. This project seeks to understand how
                                                                  in Australia in an era of digital downloads. Based on a
Australian and international intermediaries respond to
                                                                  comprehensive longitudinal dataset on music use in
takedown requests in three areas: copyright, defamation,
                                                                  Australia provided by industry partners, the project uses
and hate speech. It aims to create new knowledge about
                                                                  innovative computational methods to develop and test
how intermediaries can be influenced to regulate internet
                                                                  evidence-based models for generating, sharing and
content, and how due process and freedom of speech can
                                                                  distributing music revenues. It also examines the current
be protected.
                                                                  and future uses of music usage data in decision-making
This project is now in its final year. Over the last two years,   processes in music organisations, as well as the potential
an extensive set of empirical case studies have been              consequences of such use for practitioners and industry
developed to better understand how intermediaries make            stakeholders.
decisions about internet content. This work in progress has
                                                                  During 2017, the development of research infrastructure
been presented at conferences including the Association of
                                                                  to support the project has been completed and the
Internet Researchers (Berlin), Internet, Politics, and Policy
                                                                  datasets from the three industry partners, Nightlife Music,
(Oxford), Australasian IP Academics (UWA), and All Things
                                                                  APRA AMCOS and SGC Media have been ingested. A
in Moderation (UCLA). Key publications to date include:
                                                                  number of workshops were held during 2017 in Brisbane
Suzor, Nicolas P., Van Geelen, Tess, & Myers West,                and Melbourne to guide the project forward and the two
Sarah (2017) Evaluating the legitimacy of platform                doctoral students based at RMIT and QUT respectively
governance: A review of research and a shared research            have both progressed well with their theses. In 2018
agenda. International Communication Gazette.                      the project will prioritise the analysis of the data that has                                         been collected and will produce findings as academic
                                                                  publications and industry reports.
Suzor, Nicolas P., Seignior, Bryony, & Singleton, Jennifer
(2017) Non-consensual porn and the responsibilities of
online intermediaries. Melbourne University Law Review,
40(3), pp. 1057–1097.

The results of this research have also been presented in
detail to the Australian Department of Communications
and the Arts and the Australian Senate Environment and
Communications Legislation Committee in their reviews of
Australia’s ‘notice and takedown’ safe harbour regime in
copyright law.


Events                                                               Creators and copyright: How do Australian
                                                                     creators navigate today's copyright
                                                                     challenges? (April)
Digital media research unplugged: Have digital
media ruined everything? (February)                                  Patricia Aufderheide (American University
                                                                     Washington DC), Kylie Pappalardo, Nic Suzor
Tim Highfield (DMRC), Nancy Baym (Microsoft
                                                                     and Distinguished Professor Stuart Cunningham
Research), Patricia Aufderheide (American
University), Axel Bruns (QUT), Nic Suzor (DMRC)

This event concluded the DMRC Summer School 2017 with
leading Australian and international experts discussing the
                                                                     This workshop discussed what creators need from
state of digital media and society in 2017: what are the roles
                                                                     copyright law to assure that Australian culture flourishes
and impacts of digital media, socially, politically, economically,
                                                                     in a digital age. Researchers from the DMRC worked with
today? Are digital media making us less informed, less social,
                                                                     Professor Aufderheide to build a research project and
and less engaged? Are the changes and disruptions brought
                                                                     present a seminar examining the scope within existing
by digital media beneficial? What responsibilities do social
                                                                     Australian copyright law for maximising opportunity and
media platforms have to their users—and what do they know
                                                                     creativity in the Australian creative industries sector.
about us? What changed in 2016, and what implications this
has for digital media going forward?
                                                                     Living Labs innovation network symposium (June)
Screen content in Australian education:
Promises and pitfalls forum (February)
Stuart Cunningham and Michael Dezuanni (DMRC)

                                                                     The 2nd Annual Living Labs Symposium was held in
                                                                     June, on the key themes of Smart and Urban, Health and
                                                                     Ageing, and Rural and Remote Living Labs. A series of case
                                                                     studies, panel discussions and practice-based workshops
                                                                     across these themes was delivered with Lars Coenen,
                                                                     Chari of Resilient Cities, Phillippa Collin, Western Sydney
                                                                     University, Neil Temperley, Data61, Malcolm Fisk, De
This event reported on the ‘Screen Content in Australian             Montfort University and Michael Dezuanni, DMRC.
Education: Digital Promise and Pitfalls’ report, an output
of the Australian Screen Content in Education project. The
report prompted discussion on insights from producers
and distributors, interviews with hundreds of teachers,
students and industry representatives, and observations
of classroom practice. Recommendations for further
opportunities for Australian producers and distributors, how
teachers use screen content, how the links between screen
and education interests can be strengthened, plus how key
players outline their educational strategies were discussed.

                                                                         DIGITAL MEDIA RESEARCH CENTRE – 2017 ANNUAL REPORT       13
Digital inclusion forum (June)                                   Democracy, politics and the popular: Symposium
                                                                 and podium discussion (August-September)

The State Library of Queensland hosted this 2-day
                                                                 Our symposium on Democracy, Politics, and the Popular
forum which focused on promoting and encouraging the
                                                                 brought together a range of scholars from Australia and
development of digital literacy skills as an essential part of
                                                                 beyond. At a time when politics is experiencing a period
empowering and assisting individuals to actively participate
                                                                 of substantial transformation and uncertainty—with digital
in the social, political, economic and cultural aspects of
                                                                 and social media often blamed for their part in upsetting
modern communities.
                                                                 long-standing conventions in politics and the media—
                                                                 the symposium explored the various factors that have
Discussions emphasized the importance of developing
                                                                 contributed to these developments. In particular, the
an inclusive culture of connection and learning that
                                                                 event looked beyond the US, UK, and Australia, which
aims to improve the digital capabilities of those who
                                                                 are so often central to the discussion of these trends,
are disadvantaged and most affected by the digital
                                                                 and also examined the rise of new, populist leaders and
divide. Public libraries in Queensland are well positioned
                                                                 movements in countries like the Philippines and Indonesia.
to participate in the development and delivery of a wide
                                                                 DMRC researchers contributed to the discussion with a
range of programs and services that seek to enhance the
                                                                 range of papers on evolving formats for journalism and
digital skills of local community members.
                                                                 the news, the role of visual social media in disseminating
                                                                 political messages, emerging approaches to governance
Digital transactions in Asia-symposium (August)                  in digitally mediated societies, and the patterns of political
                                                                 engagement and networking in social media.

                                                                 Hasan Bakhshi in conversation with Terry Flew:
                                                                 The creative industries and industrial policy: The
                                                                 UK case (September)

The Digital Transactions in Asia symposium considered the
features of Asian digital economies and their political and
cultural implications. Papers presented discussed corporate
economies (such as the emergence of Asia-based data
centres, the transnational spread of Chinese platforms,
and the founding of YouTube creator spaces in Asia), the
circulation of digital commodities (e-money and commodity
images), as well as everyday interactions online (via dating
sites for example). Keynote speakers included Yu Hong
(Zhejiang University, China), Ravi Sundaram (Centre for
Study of Developing Societies, New Delhi). Other speakers        Hasan Bakhshi, leader of creative and digital policy and
included Angela Daly, Matthew Rimmer, Gerard Goggin,             research for NESTA, reviewed the role of the creative
Stuart Cunningham, Tanya Notley, Cheryll Soriano, Pradip         industries in UK industrial policy, their evolving place vis-
Thomas, Jozon Lorenzana, Lisa Tam, Hai Hong Nguyen,              a-vis the digital economy, and explored what institutional
Vibodh Parthasarathi, Sangeet Kumar and Xinyu Zhao.              factors lie behind its increased prominence.


Mark Deuze public lecture (November)
                                                               7.0 	COMMUNICATION
                                                                     AND MEDIA
                                                                   The Digital Media Research Centre’s vibrant
                                                                   research generates a steady stream of media
                                                                   coverage, and a number of its members are
                                                                   already star media performers. The Centre’s
                                                                   media strategy is focused on capitalizing on
                                                                   and amplifying the combined media reach of its
                                                                   members and HDR students, and on maintaining
                                                                   a lively, engaged presence across the major social
                                                                   media platforms.
Professor Mark Deuze (University of Amsterdam) presented
on his research into the emergence of entrepreneurship
in journalism against the backdrop of disrupted print and
broadcast business models. Around the world, journalistic      Media presence
newcomers and senior reporters alike are striking out on
                                                               The Centre Director, Members and HDR students are
their own: forming startups and editorial collectives, being
                                                               regular commentators in the media, contributing pieces to
independent media workers, or being made individually
                                                               outlets such as Medium and The Conversation, making
responsible for the success (or failure) of the news company
                                                               feature appearances on national and international radio
that employs them. Mark’s talk focused on what it takes
                                                               and television, and providing expert comment for leading
to make it work as a startup, based on fieldwork at 20
                                                               Australian and international news outlets such as The
companies in 9 countries.
                                                               Washington Post, The Guardian, The Australian, Huffington
                                                               Post, The Courier Mail, The Age and Brisbane News, The
At home with digital media symposium (November)                ABC and The Conversation.

                                                               Examples of our media presence include:
                                                               •   Distinguished Professor Stuart Cunningham’s
                                                                   Conversation article about the rise of Australia’s online
                                                                   content creators was republished by Australian Business
                                                                   and Daily Bulletin.
                                                               •   The North West Star in Mount Isa previewed a school visit by
                                                                   science and technology experts including Dr Angela Daly.
                                                               •   Professor Terry Flew was interviewed on 2SER about
                                                                   the ‘Splinternet’ and whether the “global” experience of
                                                                   the internet is actually a myth.
                                                               •   Professor Axel Bruns covered ABC’s good showing on
                                                                   the Australian Twitter News Index for July.
                                                               •   Dr Emma Baulch and Alila Pramiyanti’s Conversation
                                                                   piece about the Hijabers of Instagram was picked up by
                                                                   Brisbane Times and the Daily Bulletin.
                                                               •   Distinguished Professor Stuart Cunningham told
                                                                   Brisbane Times and other Fairfax papers about his
                                                                   research into the economic impact of the creative
                                                                   industries in Australia.
At Home with Digital Media was a 2-day symposium
featuring a range of national and international scholarship    •   Professor Jean Burgess was interviewed by The Wire
on the changing relationships between digital media                on the use of viral media for public engagement by the
technologies and the home—as space, as place, and as               police force.
a troubled metaphor for belonging. Symposium papers            •   A piece written on LGBTQ rights in mainland China by
covered topics including smart homes and smart cities,             QUT PhD student Meg Jing Zeng for The Conversation
automated assistants and intimate technologies; domestic           also appeared on the US Huffington Post, The Wire and
media ecologies; and digitally mediated childhoods.                SBS Online.

                                                                    DIGITAL MEDIA RESEARCH CENTRE – 2017 ANNUAL REPORT       15
•   The Daily Telegraph ran a column by Kerry Parnell on         •   Professor Jean Burgess featured in a Red Bull TV
    ditching depressing news from your Twitter feed, which           documentary on successful online video creators.
    cited research by Professor Axel Bruns on Aussies’           •   Professor Stuart Cunningham was quoted in the
    prolific political bickering.                                    Sydney Morning Herald on how new viewing habits have
•   Associate Professor Nic Suzor spoke to RN Drive about            cost TV networks $2.5 billion so far.
    Facebook’s secret guidelines being leaked to the media.      •   Dr Tim Highfield was interviewed for Future Tense—ABC
•   Professor Jean Burgess was interviewed on the topic              Radio National on the GIF as an increasingly important
    of YouTube launching a new generation of creators. The           visual communication tool.
    Current, CBC Radio One (Canada).                             •   Associate Professor Michael Dezuanni was on ABC
•   Professor Axel Bruns wrote about Schapelle Corby                 TV, ABC Radio and ABC online talking about Minecraft’s
    failing to draw a Twitter audience.                              educational value for kids.
•   A Conversation article by Associate Professor Nic            •   Associate Professor Nic Suzor’s Conversation article
    Suzor on social media content regulation transparency            reports on ‘fair dealing’ and when you can copy without
    and the Facebook Files was published by Mumbrella,               permission.
    the Daily Bulletin and The Wire and led to an interview on   •   Distinguished Professor Stuart Cunningham’s
    ABC Radio National’s Drive Program.                              comments about the Federal Government’s National
•   Distinguished Professor Stuart Cunningham spoke on               Science Statement were reported on via SCIMEX, The
    Australia’s screen future being online and how it was time       Daily Bulletin, GizModo and The Conversation.
    to support new content creators for The Conversation. This   •   Professor Jean Burgess was named as one of 1,000
    was followed up by ABC Brisbane and ABC Drive NSW.               global women in tech in an article in Mic, May 2017.
•   Dr Tim Highfield was interviewed for Wired (USA) on          •   Associate Professor Nicolas Suzor explained how
    how memes are being weaponized by political extremists.          copyright reform could make more books available for
•   Brisbane Times and other Fairfax sites published a               blind people in a piece for The Conversation. It was
    Conversation article by Professor Marcus Foth and                republished by Australasian Science.
    Dr Mirko Guaralda on designing cities that encouraged        •   Professor Axel Bruns’ Conversation article highlighting
    people to slow down.                                             what made news on Twitter in Australia during February
•   Smart city research pioneer made a fellow of the                 was republished by All Latest News.
    Australian Computer Society: Director of the QUT Design      •   Dr Tim Highfield was interviewed for ABC News
    Lab, Professor Marcus Foth has received a prestigious            (Australia) talking about ‘Facebook exploits human
    honour by being named a fellow of the Australian                 weakness and is intentionally addictive, ex-president says’.
    Computer Society (ACS).
                                                                 •   Associate Professor Nic Suzor’s Conversation article
•   Associate Professor Nic Suzor talked to The Daily                discussed how Facebook must be more transparent.
    Telegraph about piracy laws and site blocking, with the
    story also run by The Courier-Mail and Herald Sun.


Centre website
The Centre website is located at

Social media
Established in June 2015, by late 2017 the DMRC Twitter        channel for major news items and announcements, which are
account (@qutdmrc) had 1,700 followers. Also attached to the   also cross-published via the QUT News functionality on the
@qutdrmc twitter account is the Medium publication DMRC        Centre website, the page currently has 860 likes. The DMRC
at large, established at the beginning of 2016. The DMRC       Instagram account (@qutdmrc) is used to visually document
Facebook page ( is an important           and personalize Centre activities and has 174 followers.

@qutdmrc Facobook page

                                                               @qutdmrc Instragram page

                                                                   DIGITAL MEDIA RESEARCH CENTRE – 2017 ANNUAL REPORT   17

Completed Students
Name                          Thesis title                                           Supervisors
Dr Jacinta Buchbach           Social media policies and work: Reconciling            Associate Professor Nic Suzor (Principal)
                              personal autonomy interests and employer risk          Professor Matthew Rimmer (Associate)
Dr Cameron Cliff              Transmedia storytelling strategy: How and              Dr Jon Silver (Principal)
                              why producers use transmedia storytelling for          Distinguished Professor Stuart Cunningham (Associate)
                              competitive advantage
Dr Stefanie Duguay            Identity modulation in networked publics: Queer        Professor Jean Burgess (Principal)
                              women’s participation and representation on            Dr Elija Cassidy (Associate)
                              Tinder, Instagram, and Vine
Dr Michael Lee                NBA memes: The role of fan image macros within         Associate Professor Stephen Harrington (Principal)
                              the online NBA fan community                           Professor Jean Burgess (Associate)
Dr Jiajie Lu                  Understanding the Chinese digital diaspora: From       Professor Terry Flew (Principal)
                              media consumption to social connections                Associate Professor Peta Mitchell (Associate)
Dr Prue Miles                 Teachers’ use of multiplatform educational screen      Distinguished Professor Stuart Cunningham (Principal)
                              content: The case of Australia’s SBS                   Associate Professor Michael Dezuanni (Associate)
Judy Newton (MA)              Social media implementation models in the              ProfessorJean Burgess (Principal)
                              Australian emergency management sector                 Professor Axel Bruns (Associate)
Dr Emma Potter-Hay            Broadcast, promote, respond, engage: Competing Professor Jean Burgess (Principal)
                              understandings of the purpose and value of social Professor Axel Bruns (Associate)
                              media in an emergency management organisation Associate Professor John Banks (Associate)
Michael Ward (MA)             ABC television sport: Public broadcasting,             Distinguished Professor Stuart Cunningham (Principal)
                              innovation and nation building                         Dr Mark Ryan (Associate)

New Competitive Grants
In 2017 DMRC members were awarded new competitive grants in ARC Linkage, Discovery, DECRA, and a range of smaller
schemes. The total amount of new funding awarded was $1,674,138.

Project Title              Australian cultural and creative activity: A population and hotspot analysis
Project Type               ARC Linkage Projects
Project Team               Distinguished Professor Stuart Cunningham, Professor Greg Hearn, Associate Professor Phillip McIntyre,
                           Professor Patrik Wikstrom, Dr Susan Kerrigan
Project Summary            A population and hotspot analysis. This project aims to grasp the contemporary dynamics of cultural and
                           creative activity in Australia. It represents a major innovation, bringing together population-level and comparative
                           studies of local cultural and creative activity. The comprehensive project will advance the integration of
                           quantitative and qualitative research strategies, painting a complete national picture, while also exploring the
                           factors that are producing local and regional creative hotspots. The project will deliver outputs such as reports
                           and forums that are framed in close collaboration with partners in order to deliver outcomes such as better-
                           targeted policy and program initiatives. This will provide national cultural and policy benefits from placing the
                           creative sector in front of policy makers as a vital contributor to high growth, labour-intensive economic activity
                           in the context of the Australian economy in transition.
Total Amount Awarded       $480,000
Industry Partners          Arts Queensland, Creative Victoria, Arts NSW, Arts SA, Department of Culture and the Arts


Project Title          Digital Media, Location Awareness, and the Politics of Geodata
Project Type           ARC Discovery Project
Project Team           Associate Professor Peta Mitchell, Dr Tim Highfield, Professor Larissa Hjorth, Professor Paul Dourish,
                       Dr Agnieszka Leszczynski
Project Summary        Digital media, location awareness, and the politics of geodata. This project aims to examine the increasingly
                       pervasive role of location metadata, or geodata, in Australian smartphone practices and cultures and the
                       implications this has for users, industry, and public administration. The project will deliver online and open
                       resources to enhance public understanding of geodata and geoprivacy, as well as industry and policy
                       recommendations that address the crucial issue of ‘location awareness’ in everyday digital media use.
                       The project will generate new insights into the critical role of geodata in everyday digital media use and will
                       contribute to broader public discussion about data privacy, surveillance and cybersecurity. Its findings will
                       also provide industry benefits, enhancing developers’ understanding of how everyday users apprehend and
                       negotiate the privacy implications of location services.
Total Amount Awarded   $324,700

Project Title          Informal, Formal, Embedded: Australian Game Developers and Skills Transfer
Project Type           ARC Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA)
Project Team           Dr Brendan Keogh
Project Summary        Skills development and transfer in the digital gaming sector. This project aims to examine the transferability and
                       sustainability of videogame development skillsets to the broader digital sector. The project will lead to future job
                       creation, and to cultural and economic innovation in Australia.
Total Amount Awarded   $367,983

Project Title          Celebrating Everyday Life in the Australia-Indonesia Neighbourhood
Project Type           Australia Indonesia Centre Tactical Research Scheme, Monash University
Project Team           Dr Emma Baulch, Professor Ariel Heryanto, Dr Inaya Rakhmani, Dr Najib Azca, Adjunct Professor Stanley
Project Summary        The project addresses key issues under the AIC themes of culture and identity, youth, and generations.
                       Building on previous studies about the present, this project aims to investigate and imagine a possible scenario
                       where an increasing number of people of Australia and Indonesia enjoy significantly intimate and productive
                       engagements. In pursuit of a fresh in—depth knowledge within the given time constraint, this project will be
                       conducted mainly in Indonesia. It will invite Indonesian and Australian citizens who reside in selected cities in
                       Indonesia to be participants.
Total Amount Awarded   $2,110

Project Title          Creative Industries After 20 Years: The Complex Path from Policy to Curriculum
Project Type           Menzies Centre for Australian Studies Bicentennial Fellowship
Project Team           Professor Terry Flew
Project Summary        This project will examine the context in which this growth has occurred in creative industries programs in the
                       U.K. and Australia, and its relationship to creative industries as a policy and research field. The nature of these
                       programs is quite diffuse, emphasizing areas across a spectrum for music technology to writing and publishing
                       to the performing arts to digital enterprise. But they all identify the creative industries nomenclature as opening
                       up opportunities or graduates that are not adequately served by more established programs such as fine arts
                       or liberal arts. This project would undertake interviews with key informants in these universities to establish a
                       clearer picture of what constitutes the basis of the contemporary creative industries degree.
Total Amount Awarded   $2,500
Industry Partner       King’s College London

                                                                           DIGITAL MEDIA RESEARCH CENTRE – 2017 ANNUAL REPORT             19
You can also read