CMN 696W (02) - Seminar in Media Studies

Sem/Theorizing Youtube

Credits: 4.0
Term: Fall 2021 - Full Term (08/30/2021 - 12/13/2021)
Grade Mode: Letter Grading
Class Size:   20  
CRN: 13714
Variable topics in media research, theory, and practice. May be repeated for different topics. Topic descriptions available in department office during preregistration. Prereq: CMN 455, CMN 456, CMN 457 and two 500-level courses, or permission.
You must sign up in the Dept Office before registering through WEBCAT.
Repeat Rule: May be repeated up to 1 times.
Equivalent(s): CMN 696
Only listed campus in section: Durham
Classes not allowed in section: Freshman
Only listed majors in section: CMN:BUSAPPL, CMN:MEDIA, COMMUNICATION
Attributes: Writing Intensive Course
Instructors: Michael Soha

Times & Locations

Start Date End Date Days Time Location
8/30/2021 12/13/2021 TR 3:40pm - 5:00pm HORT 110
Additional Course Details: 




CMN 696: Theorizing YouTube. How many YouTube videos have you watched today? How about videos on Instagram or TikTok? What about livestreams on platforms like Twitch or Facebook? Digital video, much of it amateur or semi-professional, has come to dominate social media and the internet—accounting for everything from entertainment to political activism. YouTube, founded in 2005, began the transformation of the primarily text and image-based internet to a more video-heavy experience. 

This class is designed around studying the history and cultural impact of YouTube, as well as social media-based video more generally. We’ll study the history of YouTube, and immerse ourselves the present culture, forms, and genres of YouTube. We’ll look at the phenomenon of ‘YouTube stars’ and the emergence of influencer culture on the platform. We’ll study the growing body of scholarship and popular commentary and criticism of YouTube and related platforms. We’ll look at the debates around free speech and concerns over political extremism and conspiracy theories. YouTube will be our focal point through which we will examine many of the larger topics related to video-based social media platforms: entertainment, identity, journalism, education, cultural production, fandom, politics, community, marketing, and public discourse. In addition to the expected components of a writing-intensive class, students will also have the opportunity to use the modality of video to enhance their scholarship: curating, remixing, and even creating original critical video pieces.  
No previous experience with video editing or production is expected or required.