Name: Sanika Karnik
Student ID: 13170787
Task: Reading Diary Week 8
Title: Researching the Media and Cultural Industries
This week we observed the importance of researching the media and cultural studies, and looked at some ways to conduct research.
Firstly, the definitely of a ‘culture industry’ is “one which has as its main function the production or distribution of art, entertainment or information.”
Most of the research conducted around cultural industries is by the companies themselves as a way to advance themselves. Also, company’s conduction annual reports about their accounts every year, as well as research their own and their competitors market positions. This is called administrative research.
An interesting point brought up is that media have ‘power without responsibility’. This is the idea that press have the similar power to political institutions (Curran and Seaton, 1991).
Moving on to how to begin conducting research, the first thing to do is decide an object of study and narrow your study area as much as possible. The method you decide to use will depend on how you operationalize your object of analysis.
An important aspect to keep in mind is how much access you are going to be able to have. Access to media industry can be difficult to get, but research is still possible.
Two kinds of research are:
- Documentary evidence: Archive research
- People: Interview, participant observation, and oral history
Each of these research methods has it’s own processes which are as follows:
- Archive research: This method involves accessing original documents. It is important to understand that most projects will involve aspects this.
- Interview: This enables you to find out about people’s ideas, opinions and attitudes. You will need to interview several people to ensure that your sample is representative. Interviews can be conducted face to face, via email, telephone, letter, or survey.
- Participant observation: This involves you participating in the routines you are researching and gives you a first hand perspective into your object of study.
- Oral history: For this method you need to interview people about past experiences and memories.
Keep in mind that it is possible to combine the methods to get a richer understanding of your object of study.
In conclusion, a possible research question relating to this information can be “What are the advantages and disadvantages of (insert research method)?” To conduct study I would have to pick a research method and look at some studies that were conducted using that method, observing if there are any repeating advantages and disadvantages.
- Jane Stokes (2003) How to do media & cultural studies, chapter 4. London: SAGE Publications Ltd.
- Cassell, C.C. Symon, G.S. 2004. Essential Guide to Qualitative Methods in Organizational Research. [Online] London: SAGE Publications Ltd. [Accessed 20 March 2014]. Available at: http://books.google.co.uk/books?hl=en&lr=&id=auAjat0t9RMC&oi=fnd&pg=PP2&dq=advantages+and+disadvantages+of+research+methods&ots=K7SukKjGAP&sig=MW_-crkLgDpndgn6ZHRTvbYVMo8#v=onepage&q&f=false