Machinima as a Practice of Meaning-making: A Case Study of Machinimators Participating in a Contest in Second Life

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    Abstract

    This research looks at the semiotic interest of machinimators with focus on the meanings that selected machinimators ascribe to their own films. The central data production revolves around 13 machinimators, who each entered a machinima film to a contest held in Roskilde University’s island in Second Life, 2009. While machinima contests of this type are common, the impact of this intervention is critiqued in the paper. The paper describes the three sources for data: a web-based initial survey, follow-up individual interviews with machinimators about their films (in Second Life), and probes into their stated inspirational resources.
    The theoretical approach is dialogic communication research and mediated discourse analysis, which aims to uncover the nexus of dynamic creative processes as fundamentally social and polyphonic. Therefore, the study examines the dynamics and significance of the complex interactions, relationships, cultural identities, and tools which constitute and sustain machinima activities. This is done by asking questions regarding meaningfulness; what meanings the machinimators ascribe to finished films, how these meanings might have transformed during specific creative processes, and the influence of the chosen tools, sign systems and technologies.
    The discussion in the paper reflects on the framework for the study and if, and how, it was relevant for attaining insight into meanings that individual machinimators generate and the dynamics which constitute and sustain the machinimator’s creative practice.
    Translated title of the contributionMachinima som Praksisfællesskab og Meningsdannelse: Et case studie af en filmkonkurrence i Second Life
    Original languageEnglish
    Publication date13 Oct 2010
    Number of pages1
    Publication statusPublished - 13 Oct 2010
    Event3rd European Communication and Education Conference : Transcultural Communication -- Intercultural Comparisons - Hamburg, Germany
    Duration: 12 Oct 201015 Oct 2010

    Conference

    Conference3rd European Communication and Education Conference
    Country/TerritoryGermany
    CityHamburg
    Period12/10/201015/10/2010

    Bibliographical note

    panel: “Making Sense of Virtual Worlds as Sites of Innovation in Communication”

    Keywords

    • machinima
    • film production

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