The creative use of online social media to increase public engagement and participation in the professional arts through collaborative involvement in creative practice.
The success of online social media has been unprecedented, allowing millions of members to upload photos, share links and videos as well as personal information about themselves and their lifestyle preferences. Since the beginning of the 21st century, online social networking sites such as Facebook, YouTube and Flickr have become integral to our daily lives. These new technologies have resulted in new social behaviours, which are being reflected in artistic practice. The important question is no longer whether the use of these tools will spread and reshape arts practice, but how they will do so. To date, the creative uses of online social media have been split mostly down amateur/professional lines. Whilst informal amateur groups form online groups to share and develop work or to meet other collaborators, professional artists and organisations use online social media in a more formal manner, to share information about their work online. However, online social tools offer more than merely providing alternative ways for artists and arts organisations to promote their work with a larger audience. The collaborative tools provided by online social networking sites offer new ways for artists to build creative relationships with their audience, by enabling the public to access, engage with and participate in professional arts practice, by becoming actively involved in the creative process. Online social technologies enable artists to make work differently, and in doing so offer exciting possibilities around the development of artistic practice. This paper aims to explore questions about how the use of social online tools may impact on artistic practice both in terms of the artist, and their audience, focusing on the following questions; • How can online social media be used to create and develop collaborative artistic content? • How can online social media be used to increase public engagement and participation in professional arts projects and events through a collaborative involvement in creative practice? The paper will be of interest to anyone interested in collaborative creation and also in new means of public access to professional arts practice through participation as consumers and producers.
Citation:Smith, S.J. (2009) The creative use of online social media to increase public engagement and participation in the professional arts through collaborative involvement in creative practice. Proceedings of the Computers and the History of Art (CHArt 09), London, November 2009.
Research Group:Institute of Creative Technologies
- Leicester Media School