ABSTrAcT Online participatory media holds the promise of activating otherwise passive audiences by providing spaces that encourage creative collaboration among diverse participants. The thesis traces the history of participation in artistic movements and early networked communication to contextualize a series of projects at the intersection of performance and participation online. Projects include WikiPhone, in which multiple participants collaborate on soundtracks in real-time, modifying existing online videos; OpenBrand, a system that allows participants to rewrite advertisements; Emma On Relationships, a video blog inviting participants to call in for love advice; and several other projects, exploring aspects of creativity and collaboration. Commonalities within these systems are examined in order to define design principles governing the creation of participatory media, and to explore the potential of these systems to effect social and political change
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