Mobile Phones and Changing Media Consumption Practices in Bangalore

Rashmi, M (2019) Mobile Phones and Changing Media Consumption Practices in Bangalore. Doctoral thesis, NIAS.

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Thesis advisorUpadhya,
Abstract: This thesis is a study of the use of mobile phones - usually viewed as a communication technology -as an emerging digital technology. It focuses on users who have experienced the digital world for the first time through mobile phones, highlighting less examined aspects of their use – in particular, for multimedia consumption. Drawing on research carried out in Bangalore with digitally marginalized users, it maps the practices that have emerged around mobile phones and their peripheral technologies after their arrival in India, the forms of sociality and work that frame and enable this modality of consumption, and the life-worlds of these consumers. The thesis also documents the offline digital economy—driven by small mobile phone shops—that constitutes, facilitates and sustains these practices and circulations. Theoretically, the thesis is located within debates on informational capitalism and digital economy. Methodologically, the study has taken a syncretic and eclectic approach, drawing upon insights from economic anthropology and tracing the ‘social life of things’. To understand the technological aspects of these developments, the thesis also borrows from recent descriptivist methods of studying informational and digital infrastructures, focusing on their materiality and utilitarian affordances. The main argument of the thesis is that media consumption practices through mobile phones bolster emergent modes of distribution and circulation of digital multimedia content by significantly expanding the market. The study sheds new light on the new model of capitalist accumulation that characterizes the digital content industry, which tries to capitalize on, and generate value from, each act of media consumption.
Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Additional Information: This thesis was submitted to Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Manipal [Year of Award: 2019]
Keywords: Mobile phones, digital multimedia consumption, digital multimedia content, offline digital economy, Bangalore
Subjects: School of Social Sciences > Sociology
Doctoral Programme > Theses
Date Deposited: 04 Jul 2021 17:00
Last Modified: 22 Aug 2023 11:15
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