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Terry Flew is a Professor of Media and Communication in the Creative Industries faculty at the Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia. He has authored the books Games: Technology, Industry, Culture (2005) and Understanding Global Media (2007). He is primarily known for these publications, which centre on a new participatory culture that has risen in the media sphere. This book provides an overview of global media production and circulation using the perspectives of politics, political economy, media and cultural studies, and creative industries. Terry Flew also explores how the industries and their audiences function on an international scale.
Games: Technology, Industry, Culture
In his book, Flew proposes that the new digital gaming trend works against the mainstream media’s portrayal of players as isolated, socially-awkward adolescent boys, hidden away in darkened bedrooms. He draws on recent statistics showing that between 40-50% of those gamers are women, and that the average age of players is mid- to late-20's, rather than young teens. Flew also credits the advent of video games with popularizing innovative media technologies, allowing consumers to archive, annotate, appropriate and recirculate media content. Consumers can use this media source as an alternative tool to gain access to information within their areas of interest, and to generate their own content and ideas.
Social implications of video games
Flew says that people are drifting away from the traditional mode of consumerism. He uses the term "pro-sumer" to describe the group of users who both consume and produce new media. These "pro-sumers" involve themselves in gaming communities in which online and offline spaces become merged and indistinguishable. Flew suggests that part of the appeal of MMORPGs lies in the idea of escapism, and the ability to assume the role of someone or something that is not possible in that individual's real life. To the player, his or her online identity may be more acceptable and desirable than their real-world identity. Flew refers to this form of hopping from one persona to another as "identity tourism". Players see their in-game personae as "theirs", whereas game publishers claim ownership of all in-game characters and property, leading to tensions between the two groups. In response to the perennial question of whether violent themes and action in video games correlate with real-life acts of violence, Flew argues that the research in this area is based mostly on a flawed cause-effect model of behaviour, and is often initiated in response to a moral panic.
See also: Video game culture
- Flew, Terry and Humphreys, Sal (2005) "Games: Technology, Industry, Culture" Oxford University Press, South Melbourne
- 2Flew, Terry and Humphreys, S 2005 " Games" Technology, Industry, Culture" in Terry Flew, New Media: an introduction(second edition), Oxford University Press, South Melbourn 101-114.