That-which-new media studies-will-become
journal contributionposted on 06.12.2017, 00:00 authored by Phillip RoePhillip Roe
The terms new media, new media studies and new media research are being taken up in a number of ways with different traditions, methodologies, and ways of constituting object(s) of study. In an article entitled 'What is New Media Research?' (2001), Chris Chesher has considered what distinguishes the research on new media amongst this proliferation of approaches and methodologies. He notes that many in these traditions just get on with producing new media without engaging with the question of how these media are new. Yet his concern is with a more critical and theoretical New Media Studies, and he has continued to articulate and advocate the kind (brand) of new media studies and new media research paradigm that he would identify with. It is also this kind of new media studies that I identify with. Chesher's intervention opens up the question of the research paradigm of new media studies/research. He notes that 'new media are nothing new', and advocates the use of the term new media against the problematic use of medium specific terms which date quickly (Chesher, 2001:229). Configuring a research paradigm in this context suggests that what must be engaged with is precisely how new media can be thought as "new". In thinking the "new" of new media, the question firstly turns to, not what are new media (as particular media technologies), but rather what is new media studies/new media research.