Spreadable Media and the JBL Basketball League Essay Example

23Spreadable Media and the JBL Basketball League

Spreadable Media and the JBL Basketball League

Table of Contents

3Research problem

4Methodology and scope


4Research type

4Research Philosophy

4Research Approach

5Research design

5Research questions

6Aim and rationale

7Literature review

7Spreadable media

8Effective spreadability of media content

10Growth and popularity of spreadable media


14Video production and distribution

15Using social media to engage with JBL basketball lovers



Spreadable Media and the JBL Basketball League

Research problem

The introduction and popularity of variety of social networking sites has resulted in the development of groups of consumers whose urge for receiving information has been necessitated by the availability social media (Vedrashko 2010). Through their engagement in social media, it has become possible to receive, comment and forwarded information at an instant and this has made the spread of information fast and easy to access (Burgess et al 2009). The need to develop a participatory culture when using social media establishes the essence of spreadable media. The need to distinguish between distribution, which denotes a vertical approach to the spread of media content, and circulation, which necessitates the spread of content because of numerous informal transactions between non-commercial and commercial participants, forms the basis of this study. The need to develop a news items in the form of a video of JBL Basketball League and positing it different social networking sites will provide information and spread awareness to basketball lovers on the initiatives that JBL Basketball League has been taking to ensure that it realizes improvement in terms of the ability of the team to realize success. The study will focus on the techniques through which JBL Basketball League can use spreadable media in the development of a participatory culture among basketball lovers.

Methodology and scope


This is a practice-based research, which was developed by Candy (2006), and it illustrates the stages, which must be covered in the process of development of a research strategy.

Research type

Being a practice-based research, the study will aim at developing an understanding of techniques through which spreadable media can be used in enhancing an understanding of the activities and operations of JBL Basketball League. It will be important to provide explanation on how this approach will be effective. Furthermore, through practice based research it will be possible to explore the techniques and methodologies of using spreadable media in enhancing an understanding of the activities and operations of JBL Basketball League to their supporters.

Research Philosophy

The research philosophy adopted in this research is the philosophy of intepretivism. This is because the study involves the study of the existing literature and the arguments and counter-arguments of various authors (Flick 2011).

Research Approach

The research approach, which has been adopted in this research, is the deductive research approach (Silverman, 2013). This is because in this research the study would focus on the existing literature on social media and spreadability of media contents and the process of using practice based approach in developing spreadable videos.

Research design

The study used mixed method research design in the collection of both qualitative and quantitative data through literature review and incorporation practice based approach. The incorporation of mixed method in the study will provide a broader understanding of the research problem (Bryman 2012). Through a combination of the qualitative and quantitate aspects of research, the mixed method design will legitimize the use of multiple approaches in providing answers to research questions while at the same time providing techniques of bridging the schism existing between the two approaches (Creswell & Plano

Research questions

The findings of the study were based on the following research questions

What is meant by the term ‘spreadability’ of media contents?

What are the significant elements that could influence spreadability of media production?

How can we use social media networks to engage with a community (basketball lovers) to increase the influence and raise public awareness of the basketball league?


The study will be involved in an assessment of how different aspects of social media can be used in the creation of a community of basketball lovers. This will be through demonstration on how a video of the JBL Basketball League can be used in increasing awareness among basketball lovers on different aspects of the game. In addition, through the video it will also be possible to assess the role of basketball lovers as users of different aspects of social media in spreading information about the game through their participation on the online communication platforms.

Aim and rationale

The project has a significant objective because it explores the role of spreadable media, particularly among basketball lovers. The project is significant because there is limited research that has been done on spreadable media. Through this research, knowledge will be developed on the techniques that users of social media platform can employ to enhance their participation in improving the level of awareness about different aspects in the society that they consider of interests. Through their involvement, social media platforms will not only become platforms for information sharing but also for knowledge acquisition and distribution. This is based on the realization that social media is characterized by users who play varieties of roles with regard to the dissemination of information. By identifying and understanding their roles of these sites, it will be easier for users of these platforms to develop an understanding of their contribution towards spreading information.

The study will also act as a reference point for individuals interested in using social media in the creation and dissemination of news items. This is because the study will explain how merging skills with elements such as creativity using the available technology and the internet can be used in providing different population separated by geographical boundaries with information about events that are happening in different parts of the world. The advantage of this approach to information sharing is that it creates a population that is knowledgeable and informed about events happening in different parts of the society. Furthermore, through information sharing and the creation of participatory community, it will be possible to get instant feedbacks in the form of responses from the community of users. These responses can act as motivation to the recipient and in some instances they can used in the acquisition of solutions to different problems affecting the society.

Literature review

Spreadable media

The objective of spreadable media according to Jenkins et al (2013) is to introduce an aspect of revolution and change in the dissemination of information. This is because it advocates for the change of the use of these media channels from distribution to communication. Through this change, social media can become the finest possible communication apparatus in public life. This is because when they are used in receiving as well as transmitting user of these sites will be able to speak and listen hence ensuring the creation of a community that is not isolated but involved in every aspect of communication.

Spreadable media in the view of Dijck (2013) does not only facilitate circulation of information in the form of a hybrid system but also a form of media that travels across varieties of media platforms. This is because the participants in these platforms take it as their responsbility to share the information with other users within their social networks who in turn also share that information. It is possible for media users to accept this approach to information circulation as normal way of conducting business or in some instances, it can be labelled as piracy. Irrespective of the labels it receives, spreadable media encourages a widespread circulation of different concepts of media through conscious actions of dispersed network of consumers and participants. Their objective is to facilitate the creation of greater awareness and visibility considering that the content travels in directions that are unpredicted while encouraging people who are potentially interested with more engagement with the producers of the media content.

According to Jenkins et al (2013), spreadability therefore focuses on the value generated from grassroots circulation and how different sectors within the media industry can be reconfigured with the objective of accepting ensuring that they assist grassroots intermediaries in expanding their reach to the public.

Effective spreadability of media content

According to Meikle (2011), there is a relationship between spreadable media and convergence culture. Convergence culture begins with a rejection of convergence as an integration of the functions of the media within a single media device. This integration occurs in favour of a media channel that emphasizes on the flow of media content across multiple channels of media. The rise of technological devices such as the iPad and the iPhone has made the magical box, which is the single media device closer to reality. The contemporary society is considered as a moment in which every bit of information in the form of image or story travels across every available media platform. This process occurs through decision made in corporate boardrooms or consumers in a living room. Convergence culture necessitates the development of a participatory culture, which normally happens through citizen journalism. Citizens journalism in the view of Kozinets (2011) involves the application of the application of different aspects of participatory culture to not only the news sectors but also in other aspects of networking platforms that necessitate the development of trends impacting on different spaces that are involved in the production and distribution of media items. This has been necessitated by the expansion of smartphone technology, social networking sites, Second life and Web 2.0 which contribute to the development of an elaborate understanding trans media communication and participatory culture.

The central idea emanating from spreadable media, in the view of Jenkins et al (2013), is that “if it doesn’t spread it is dead.” This assertion is based on the understanding that there exists a consistent tension of media transition between the desire to lock down media content and unlimited access of these content. The desire to provide media with unlimited access is aimed at empowering consumers with techniques that will help them. According to Mandiberg (2012), the tension arises from the desire to get access to news items and the techniques of spreading this news through social media platforms such as Twitter and blogs without the loss of credibility. It is important to embrace the spreadability of media approach to information dissemination because social media is a resource used by community of users to talk amongst themselves.

According to Berry and Sobieraj (2014) since its development, social media has played a critical role in the creation of a participatory community of users in the aftermath of the 2010 Iranian elections, social media platforms such as Twitter was instrumental in helping in the organization of the protests. it was also effective in helping in gathering information about the evenest that were happening outside the world and increasing the level of emotional engagement in the political events within Iran. During this period, Berry and Sobieraj (2014) assert that Twitter became a platform of disseminating information about the events that were happening in Tehran to people in different parts of the world. Through Twitter, Iranians in diaspora especially those in Europe and the United States facilitated the circulation of this information. Throughout the period twitter became a platform through which most Americans and Europeans developed greater closeness to Iranians because they were using social media to learn and comment about the events. Twitter was the same tool that these individuals were using in sharing pictures and videos with their friends. Through twitter, the users in different parts of the world felt greater investment in the events that were happening in Iran considering that they were actively involved in helping to spread the information as a technique of alerting others.

According to Berry and Sobieraj (2014), the flow of unfiltered information through Twitter compelled those on this platform to pile pressure on news agencies to provide more cover of the political situation in Iran. Twitter became a self-contained news system and the people in this network used #cnnfail because of the need for the skills and resources of professional journalists in the process of disseminating the news. Inasmuch as pressure on news agencies was a signal of the extent to which people were still dependent on legacy media to provide context for information in circulation, it was also a revelation that news agencies must be more alert in the registration of signs of public interest and develop novel techniques of responding to the needs.

Growth and popularity of spreadable media

One of the attributes of new stories is that they generate conversations. According to Jenkins et al (2015), in the pre-digital world, people cut out news articles and pinned them on notice boards as a technique of spreading news. In other instances, the y clip stores and send them to their friends. In the digital world, this attribute still happens but with more speed and scope because of the existence of affordable digital networking tools such as smartphones and social media. Platforms such as blogs and Twitter exist as tools for sharing links with other consumers. There are news agencies that restrict sharing of news items amongst readers. Such actions may be perceived as aimed at protecting the commercial interest of the news items, however, may restricting sharing, they kill the news item through the destruction of its value as a cultural resource within networked communities. This is because with the availability of social networks, the public and community of readers will also look elsewhere for news items that can be spread.

Jenkins et al (2013) assert that Susan Boyle’s video is an example of a news item that was spread through its movement among readers in the blog community. Its spread was facilitated by the ability of bloggers and other social media users to situate it in a range of varieties of ongoing conversations where she was considered relevant. For instance scientific blogs when in conversations about the video focused on her vocal chords by providing scientific explanations on why she was able to produce such a voice. For church blogs, the video was used in the organization of prayer groups, while the mommy blogs focused on her love as a caretaker providing sufficient and motherly care for her elderly mother. Music blogs focussed on her choice of songs while fashion blogs focused on the artistic elements that defined her make over during the show. The story of Boyle’s video provides an understanding that there are varieties of perspectives that can be derived from a single story. This implies that every news item has the ability to spread through social media that act as grassroots intermediaries. Through these intermediaries, the story is inserted into a plethora of conversations in arrange of varieties of communities. From a journalist perspective, Berry and Sobieraj (2014) assert that it is important to understand how social media contributes to the creation of value through dissemination of information. Furthermore, social media is an important element of spreadable media considering its effectiveness in serving diverse constitutes and facilitating the development of a business model that allows the society to capture value through a hybrid circulation system.

According to Jenkins et al (2015), spreadability is largely based on technical affordances. Videos that are created and uploaded on YouTube can spread effectively because they allow users to embed them on their blogs and Facebook pages. Furthermore, the interfaces of the embedded videos make it easier for users to follow it back to its original context on You Tube. Such new items are considered as contents that are designed to be spread. Through spreadability, it is possible to build a social relationship with consumers. This is because most of the users involved in the creation of spreadable content are indirectly involved in encouraging other users to spread their materials. This is through a process of courting the users as participants in the distribution process. News sites such as Slashdot encourages users to be involved in the process of gathering and appraising content. This is considered as an effective role of spreadable media because it helps in the creation of awareness through active circulation of content.

In the contemporary digital community, according to Jenkins et al (2015), social media has enabled the development of groups that have a strong investment in ensuring the spread of content while engaging in lower investment in the control of its distribution. These include political campaigners operating on low budgets with the desire of maximizing their reach for voters. There are also religious media outlets that place high value in the spread of the gospel than monetizing information circulation. Furthermore, there are also activist groups with the objective of reaching beyond their core groups of supporters. In each of these scenarios, these players are involved in processes of building direct appeals to their supporters to help them in spreading the content of their objectives instead of the construction of prohibitions on grassroots and intermediary circulations (Yusuf 2009).

The spread of information through spreadable media according to Fournier (2014) enables the insertion of that information into conversations that help users in processing the information and developing an understanding of its value for them as members of the community. This means that conversations seeded through spreadable media are considered richer in monitoring public response compared to narrowly structured focus groups. This is because such platforms companies and different entities in the business sector can identify problems in their customer relations and develop techniques of rectifying these challenges. The ability of such organizations to identify and develop solution towards its challenges is related to the use of spreadable media in listening to the insights of the consumers. Historically, according to Friestad and Peter (2014) newspapers relied on letters to editors in performing some of their functions. However, the focus of these newspapers was only on those groups seeking direct influence through editorial discussions. However, with the development of social media, organizations have realized that there are other things related to their new items that they can learn through actively listening to conversations that users are having through and around the circulation of their content (Sullivan 2009).

In explaining the relationship between spreadable media and viral media, Jenkins et al (2013) argue that it will be important to address questions emanating from the understanding of how the circulation of media content through grassroots communities that are outside the direct control of the people in charge of formulating the content. Nahon and Hemsley (2013) assert that the understanding of the concept viral media strips away the agency of the grassroots community attempting to explain the circulation of the content. In viral media people become unknowing carriers of contagious and powerful ideas that when they bring back to their social networks infects their friends and family. Spreadable media unlike viral media operates on the understanding that people have the autonomy of making conscious decisions, which help in the circulation of a certain content. Their participation in this process in the view of Jenkins et al (2013) emanates from the understanding that they participate in the process because they see it playing a meaningful role in contributing to their conversations. This explains why they share the information with their friends to generate a different perspective. In the process of circulating the content, users of spreadable media they help in appraising its value, framing the content to ensure that it fist better into the ongoing social interaction. The use of spreadable media in circulating content also helps the users in building upon and transformation of the remix of the content hence extending its shelf life and facilitating the broader circulation of the media content (Jenkins et al (2013).


Video production and distribution

The objective of practice-based approach was to produce professional looking videos and assess their role in attracting basketball supporters towards understanding the activities of JBL Basketball League. The videos were uploaded on the following URL https://youtu.be/ooxxwW2LHlM and https://youtu.be/sFYQea7-TAA. The production process involved using a high quality video camera coupled by additional microphones, lighting and tripods to capture the images. The characters in the video were real JBL Basketball League players who were trained on how to play different roles in communicating various aspects related to their activities in the team. The editing process was through Adobe Premier, video editing software. The production process was successful in containing the shots of the team working hard operating on the motivation to win. This will encourage their audience to support them.

The process of distributing the video on social media began with uploading them on YouTube. This is because through YouTube it would be possible to reach a wide range of basketball lovers. For basketball lovers who prefer other social networking sites such as Facebook, they were accessed by creating a link to the video on YouTube, which they could access. This was also done for the audience in networking sites such as Twitter.

Using social media to engage with JBL basketball lovers

Social media as a form of spreadable media can be used in engaging a community with the aim of increasing the level of influence and raising public awareness on a specific issue. Through the JBL basketball league videos, JBL no days off rough-cut, it is possible to evaluate how social media can be used in enhancing cohesion and connectivity among users by providing them with items that can enhance their conversations and cohesion. The videos were designed with the aim of demonstrating the essence of team spirit and hard work among basketball players who dedicate their time to enhance their skills by practicing. The literature review indicates that there are different forms through which a culture of participation can develop through spreadable media. This is because there are elements of participatory culture that require more skills, others that require more community engagement and more technical access than others. This means that the variations in the spectacular forms of conversations in spreadable media that emanate from grassroots cultural production is founded on one end of a continuum of numerous forms of community participation.

Through practice-based research, it was possible to notice that the video would be spreadable upon uploading on social media because there are people within these social networking sites that will be involved in mashing up the news. Others will be engaged in different forms of analysis with the objective of understanding the intended meaning of the content. In the case of the JBL no days off rough cut videos. The elements of controversy and rumours can be cited as possible reason why the recipient of the videos would want to share and discuss their content in varieties of platforms with others. By sharing, liking or commenting on the content of the videos, the fans can demonstrate their level of support and emotional attachment to the team. It is notable that the fans of the team are not only involved in online conversations about the team but they are also members of other online groups on the social networking platform. For the fans who are also members of motivational groups or educational groups the videos can be used in beginning and continuing conversations on the essence of dedication, resilience and harder in the realization of the objectives and goals of an individual in life. As motivational tool, the videos will serve the purpose of stressing on the importance of certain life skills in navigating life related challenges. This is also an indication that fans and other subscribers to the videos will only share their content in places or platforms where they consider it relevant in enhancing their conversations. The element of motivation has been considered as a vital aspect in enhancing participation among users of social media. The use of video is considered an essential element in emphasizing the essence of certain moral and information conveyed through the content of the video in social media.

Other than the motivational aspect, the videos will be used as spreadable media and play the role of propelling controversy when engaging the community of participants. From the videos the players depicts a situation where they have no breaks in between their trainings. The can be perceived as an indication of the level of exploitation and negligence to the welfare of the players. The controversy among the community of participants can be propelled when the team fails to win its games during league matches. The sharing of content to propel controversy may arise from non-supporters of the team or those perceived as enemies of the management of the team. In these conversations, these can be used as elements aimed at demoralizing the team spirit and diminishing the efforts by the management that were aimed at demonstrating resilience and dedication of team members towards the realization of team objectives.

Social media will create a community of participants. The videos will play a major of consumers who are considered part of an active agency involved in the description of the features of the spreadable media content. This description is designed and guided by knowledge. This explains why and how users in the social media will pass along some media content but not others. Unlike the viral media, whose focus is content, spreadability focuses on the attributes of the medium in which the content appears.

When understood in relation to spreadability of the JBL videos, it is possible to assert that there are users who may want to share the content for the sake of spreading rumours about the team. This is unlike in viral media because the users involved in sharing are conscious of their actions and they understand the content in terms of the techniques through which they can manipulate the intended message to pass their rumours objective. Rumours in this content can be used in disclosing unverified information about the level of preparedness of the team regarding their ability to succeed in the league. The desire to use the videos for spreading unverified information is an indication that the videos convey varieties of meanings to different users. Depending on their perspective and understanding of the teams, the users of spreadable media will always seek ways of manipulating the media in ways that meet their intended objectives. Whether positive or negative, the desire among users to spread the content will be based on their understanding of the message and their ability to comprehend the message and pass the information to others.

Spreadable media content such as YouTube videos do not spread through contagion but because of the conscious decisions by the users to allow circulation of the content. JBL videos are cultural products whose replications considered possible through conscious human actions. The understanding of viral media is defined by a subtle vision that characterizes users who are passively contaminated and their only role is to transmit the virus to their friends. The symbolic interpretation of the aspect of contagion and infection overrates the power of the media in influencing the lives of the users while underrating the power of the users. According to the tenets of spreadable media, the transmission of content from one user to another or a node of a web to another happens because of the autonomous decision of active users to allow the circulation of some content and not others.

The JBL Basketball League videos are examples of a spreadable media content whose spreadability is determined by the conscious decisions of targeted users. Before sharing or spreading the content these users will be faced with several; questions whose answers will determine its spreadability. These will involve reflections on the worth of media content, its relevance to different personalities, its projection of personal identity and the best way for disseminating the information. By addressing these considerations, the users will be able to determine their targets and decide whether to share the content as they received or whether to supplement it with additional information in the form of messages.

The creation of JBL videos as a form of spreadable media was based on the understanding that the contemporary society is characterized by changes in the paradigm of the techniques through which the cultural content circulates within the society. The videos will be a hybrid ideal of circulation which is a result of a mixture between the vertical models that defined institutional strategies and the bottom-up strategies. The ability of different parties to engage in the creation of spreadable media content is an indication that the production of media content is no longer under the strict control of media agencies. Instead, the media public negotiates reputable content worth spreading because of web links. These links enables them to establish, through web sharing, the failure, or popularity of certain media content. This implies that spreadability is the attribute of some media content that is considered suitable for diffusion. Media content such as a film that can be accessed in different cinema hails throughout the world but is unavailable for online streaming and cannot be remixed cannot be considered as spreadable media because it lends itself to piracy. When uploaded on YouTube, the JBL videos will attract different audiences’ interest in basketball or interest in some of other reasons associated with the video. The audience will judge the videos using varieties of techniques. The possibility that the video will be liked, shared, or commented on by thousands or millions of users will depend on the content of the video and the conscious decisions made by the viewers on whether the video is worth spreading. If the videos attracts a plethora of viewers, JBL will have increased its popularity, irrespective of the intentions of the viewers, without the help of vertical promotional strategy.

Effective spreadability is considered possible when the original creators of media content place limited restrictions on how the targeted users can manipulate or share the information. This is because information wants to be streamed, diffused, and spread. The consumption of any cultural content occurs within a social context. The development of digital technology has facilitated changes in the social life of cultural content. This is because trough this technology, social media users have become passionate to different cultural products. This is because of their desire to dialogue with them, remix, and use them in the creation of novels social bonds and in the negotiation of their own identity. Upon creating the JBL videos, they were uploaded on the internet, YouTube, and the users allowed will be downloading, manipulating and spreading them through their own techniques. This was based on the realization that failing to allow users unrestricted interaction with the spreadable media would compel them to enter into clandestine traits hence becoming pirates. This is an indication that for piracy to thrive in spreadable media, the media corporations must have developed less strategic capabilities of availing their content in modes and times desirable to the users.

Since they were uploaded, the videos have attracted more attention towards the activities of JBL Basketball League. The number of views, likes and comments that keep increasing daily can demonstrate this. Furthermore, the positive comments by the audience serve as motivation for the payers towards their winning objectives while the limited negative comments provide a learning platform for the players. The videos have therefore provided a platform for thousands of supporters to track progress of the team and provide meaningful support.


Social media has contributed to the development of groups of consumers whose urge for receiving information has been necessitated by the availability these platforms. Through their engagement, it has become possible to receive, comment and forwarded information at an instant and this has made the spread of information fast and easy to access. JBL Basketball League videos provide examples of how spreadable media can be used in conveying intended information. This is because they enabled the development of conversations that help users in processing the information and developing an understanding of its value for them as members of the community. Conversations seeded through the JBL videos can be considered essential in improving and monitoring the popularity of the team and assessing possible areas of improvement based on matters arising from the comments. The videos also contributed to the formation of a participatory community of JBL supporters. This was through creating awareness and identifying obstacles facing the team and developing techniques of mitigating these challenges.


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