Mobile Multimedia in Action
Mobile Multimedia in Action displays a revealing picture of how people communicate using camera phones and other mobile multimedia devices. With such devices spreading faster than practically any other new technology, questions about how these devices are being used (and abused) to capture and distribute embarrassing or raunchy images and content, and what should be done about it, are surfacing. This volume presents the first detailed study of the use of these devices.
Using a variant of social science research known as ethnomethodology, Koskinen explores the kinds of images people take with camera phones and how they use sound to enhance these images. The book asks two main questions. First, what kinds of methods of expression, such as visuals or sound, do people use when they design multimedia messages? Second, how do people interact with and respond to each other through mobile multimedia devices? Koskinen has a broader objective centering on the impact of these devices on human relationships and society at large. He asks, what do people do with these devices? Is mobile telephony moving toward a more practical direction, or will it simply become a visual chatty channel fit for gossip but not for real news or other practical purposes? What kind of social activities and organizations does it best serve—peer-to-peer networks or institutional ones?
Koskinen examines these questions from three unique perspectives: the design elements of mobile multimedia, which considers methods of expression people use in designing multimedia messages; mobile multimedia as interaction, which looks into how people interact with each other using this technology and makes a case for studying multimedia as a naturally occurring activity; and mobile multimedia in society, which searches for answers as to the societal consequences of mobile multimedia usage. A groundbreaking work, Mobile Multimedia in Action will be a fascinating read for both multimedia device professionals and everyday users alike. Providing a glimpse into the future, Koskinen asks where mobile multimedia technology is taking mankind and society.
“Koskinen (Univ. of Helsinki) uses ethnomethodology to analyze empirical studies of how users of camera phones utilized them soon after this technology was introduced (1999-2002)… Researchers examining the past, present, and future of mobile multimedia will likely find this book illuminating and highly informative… Excellent bibliography, subject and name indexes. Summing Up: Recommended. Upper-division undergraduates and above.”
—S. H. Hildahl, Choice
“Through Koskinen’s savvy analyses, we see what others see; through his sociological imagination, we gain keen insight into the blooming, buzzing world of mobile multimedia practices. Koskinen provides a perceptive, nuanced study of an emerging practice that is changing the world in both profound and subtle ways.”
—James E. Katz, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey