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Choice Outstanding Academic Title for 2008 After occupying a central space in American living rooms for the past fifty years, is television, as we've known it, dead? The capabilities and features of that simple box have been so radically redefined that it's now nearly unrecognizable. Today, viewers with digital video recorders such as TiVo may elect to circumvent scheduling Choice Outstanding Academic Title for 2008 After occupying a central space in American living rooms for the past fifty years, is television, as we've known it, dead? The capabilities and features of that simple box have been so radically redefined that it's now nearly unrecognizable. Today, viewers with digital video recorders such as TiVo may elect to circumvent scheduling constraints and commercials. Owners of iPods and other portable viewing devices are able to download the latest episodes of their favorite shows and watch them whenever and wherever they want. Still others rent television shows on DVD, or download them through legal and illegal sources online. But these changes have not been hastening the demise of the medium. They are revolutionizing it. The Television Will Be Revolutionized examines television at the turn of the twenty-first century -- what Amanda D. Lotz terms the "post-network" era. Television, both as a technology and a tool for cultural storytelling, remains as important today as ever, but it has changed in fundamental ways as the result of technological innovations, proliferating cable channels targeting ever more specific niche audiences, and evolving forms of advertising such as product placement and branded entertainment. Many of the conventional practices and even the industry's basic business model are proving unworkable in this new context, resulting in a crisis in norms and practices. Through interviews with those working in the industry, attendance of various industry summits and meetings, surveys of trade publications, and consideration of an extensive array of popular television shows, Lotz takes us behind the screen to explore what is changing, why it's changing, and why these changes matter.


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Choice Outstanding Academic Title for 2008 After occupying a central space in American living rooms for the past fifty years, is television, as we've known it, dead? The capabilities and features of that simple box have been so radically redefined that it's now nearly unrecognizable. Today, viewers with digital video recorders such as TiVo may elect to circumvent scheduling Choice Outstanding Academic Title for 2008 After occupying a central space in American living rooms for the past fifty years, is television, as we've known it, dead? The capabilities and features of that simple box have been so radically redefined that it's now nearly unrecognizable. Today, viewers with digital video recorders such as TiVo may elect to circumvent scheduling constraints and commercials. Owners of iPods and other portable viewing devices are able to download the latest episodes of their favorite shows and watch them whenever and wherever they want. Still others rent television shows on DVD, or download them through legal and illegal sources online. But these changes have not been hastening the demise of the medium. They are revolutionizing it. The Television Will Be Revolutionized examines television at the turn of the twenty-first century -- what Amanda D. Lotz terms the "post-network" era. Television, both as a technology and a tool for cultural storytelling, remains as important today as ever, but it has changed in fundamental ways as the result of technological innovations, proliferating cable channels targeting ever more specific niche audiences, and evolving forms of advertising such as product placement and branded entertainment. Many of the conventional practices and even the industry's basic business model are proving unworkable in this new context, resulting in a crisis in norms and practices. Through interviews with those working in the industry, attendance of various industry summits and meetings, surveys of trade publications, and consideration of an extensive array of popular television shows, Lotz takes us behind the screen to explore what is changing, why it's changing, and why these changes matter.

30 review for The Television Will Be Revolutionized

  1. 4 out of 5

    Armin

    I assume this was a good book when it was written but apart from the brief history of 20th century TV the rest of it no longer makes sense because it’s too old and the post-network TV is extended far beyond this book. The fact that it is used as an MA Media Study course textbook is heartbreaking...

  2. 5 out of 5

    Mike

    Published in 2007 by NYU Press, Amanda Lotz’s The Television Will Be Revolutionized is an ideal text for understanding how the American television industry will be evolving in the 21st century. Lotz puts forth the idea of the ‘post-network era’ as the industry’s current historical epoch, tracing its lineage first from the network era and then to the multi-channel transition. Several developments have led us to this post-network era, chief among them being the medium’s process of digitization. Wi Published in 2007 by NYU Press, Amanda Lotz’s The Television Will Be Revolutionized is an ideal text for understanding how the American television industry will be evolving in the 21st century. Lotz puts forth the idea of the ‘post-network era’ as the industry’s current historical epoch, tracing its lineage first from the network era and then to the multi-channel transition. Several developments have led us to this post-network era, chief among them being the medium’s process of digitization. With the shift to digital, the medium has had to re-regulate standards, deal with new technologies (such as the DVR), and drastically re-evaluate how it measures audiences. Lotz approaches television as an industry and engages with specific content only to illustrate a point she is trying to make. This industrial approach, while potentially off-putting for some who would prefer more case studies, ultimately strengthens Lotz’s arguments because she is able to take a holistic view of the industry (and understands that it is, indeed, an industry). Lotz structures the book in such a way that it examines several different aspects of the industry, including: production, distribution, technology, regulation, advertising/financing, and audience measurement. By devoting a chapter to each industrial facet, Lotz is able to examine each subject with the necessary depth they deserve. Lotz also employs a strong historical approach in arguing how and why the medium and industry look the way they do in contemporary times. For example, in her discussion of audience measurement, Lotz describes the numerous attempts at audience measurement over the past 60 years beyond merely mentioning Nielsen. Her historical work leads us to the conclusion that it was competition from other companies and technologies that led to Nielsen drastically updating their own practices in the 1980s, 90s and even today. Another approach that the text employs is political economy. This is especially prevalent in the chapter on the changes facing the advertising industry. Lotz explores the power relations between audiences, producers, distributors, and advertisers in a way that challenges popular notions of the relationships these entities normally have. Rather than accepting that advertisers hold all the power or, at the opposite end of the spectrum, that the consumer is now king (to paraphrase a network executive), there exists a complicated power matrix predicated on various political, economic, and cultural values. These approaches are definitely a strong suit for the book, but they also limit the potential audience. The Television Will Be Revolutionized is probably best suited for graduate courses and potentially an upper division undergraduate seminar that deals exclusively with the American television industry. Additionally, this book is not aimed at the general public, save for those few individuals who are avid hobbyists of television as an institution. While Lotz may not use many case studies throughout the book, she does devote one final chapter to examining how each of the various industrial aspects explored previously play out in the real world, so to speak. The five case studies she uses flesh out and provide the reader with concrete examples of how the industry has actually evolved. It is also this section that readers may enjoy the most, depending on if they are a fan of the television show discussed. One problem that cannot be blamed on Lotz but still must be mentioned is the fact that it feels a bit outdated. Being five years on from its publication date, perhaps an updated chapter might be beneficial, especially because of how much digital and web technologies have proliferated in that timeframe. For example, she mentions useful areas of future research might be in online amateur video, an area that has exploded in popularity and merits, perhaps, its own chapter. Concerns about outdatedness aside, The Television Will Be Revolutionized is an excellent piece towards understanding how the television industry is changing. In particular, Lotz’s theorization of the post-network era is invaluable to comprehend our rapidly fragmenting, niche-ifying medium.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Ke

    While this book was well-organized, I wasn't a big fan of the author's style. I would have liked this book to have more examples. While this book was well-organized, I wasn't a big fan of the author's style. I would have liked this book to have more examples.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Brian

    This is one of the most important books written on television as both a cultural and economic medium. Amanda Lotz's illustrates how the institution of television is rapidly changing as a result of technological forces such as the Internet and cell phones and more importantly she explains how these changes are effecting the types of programs produced. In connection with the idea of programming she explains how there have come to be so many channels and how each of these channels operates to combi This is one of the most important books written on television as both a cultural and economic medium. Amanda Lotz's illustrates how the institution of television is rapidly changing as a result of technological forces such as the Internet and cell phones and more importantly she explains how these changes are effecting the types of programs produced. In connection with the idea of programming she explains how there have come to be so many channels and how each of these channels operates to combine corporate expectations with the disposable income of many Americans. This is a book that is destined to be one of the touchstones of television studies and American media in the 21st century.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Mithun Gangopadhyay

  6. 5 out of 5

    Dave

  7. 5 out of 5

    Narcis

  8. 4 out of 5

    Elliot Panek

  9. 5 out of 5

    Darcey Morris

  10. 4 out of 5

    Mara

  11. 5 out of 5

    Patrick

  12. 5 out of 5

    Rani

  13. 4 out of 5

    Bryant

  14. 4 out of 5

    Jonas Schwartz-Owen

  15. 4 out of 5

    Mark Streeter

  16. 5 out of 5

    eugeniagiaimo

  17. 5 out of 5

    Ylena Radford

  18. 5 out of 5

    Luna

  19. 4 out of 5

    Taylor Clinton

  20. 5 out of 5

    Ramakant

  21. 4 out of 5

    Arne

  22. 4 out of 5

    Amanda Fleming

  23. 5 out of 5

    Garret Castleberry

  24. 4 out of 5

    Michele

  25. 4 out of 5

    Chandler W

  26. 5 out of 5

    FJohn Rickert

  27. 5 out of 5

    Annemarie

  28. 5 out of 5

    Amanda Konkle

  29. 4 out of 5

    Igor

  30. 5 out of 5

    Greg Shapiro

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