Ze Frank and the poetics of Web video

Michael Z. Newman

Abstract


This article initiates a poetics of Web video by considering the central features of one kind of video on the Web, the amateur videoblog, in terms of its functions, which include various affordances of use, and constraints, which include economics, technology, and viewing conditions. It takes as its central example an American videoblog called The Show With Ze Frank, which ran from 2006-2007, and which drew a passionate community of fans into collaborating in its creation. This article considers amateur Web video as a potentially democratic space for media production, offering an alternative to commercial media that involves ordinary citizens as participants and champions their creativity.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5210/fm.v13i5.2102



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