In spring 2021, students in professor Matt Dewey’s “Citizen Media” course, a new interdisciplinary course shared between the Department of Communication Studies and the Journalism program, looked at issues of media access and participation in the production of information by non-professionals and activists. To think about ways people can use accessible technology to create place-based news and information, students experimented with a free mobile augmented reality app, Artivive, and created hyper-local media texts that could be engaged “in place,” at the particular locations the media texts reference.
“Citizen Journalism in Place” is a cross-section of efforts by students to think about how and where we engage news and information. In the production of each project, students considered a local social issue of concern, who the community was, the physical location where the poster could be engaged, and the technological and aesthetic affordances of images and video. The combination of images and text in the poster, with the moving images and audio of the video, creates a unique multimedia experience that provides for different types of engagement more aligned with how we consume media today.
While ideally viewed in a community setting, this exhibit tries to mimic how the public would come across and engage the posters by placing them in different areas of the William H. Hannon Library. Rather than going to the exhibition on a wall, the exhibition becomes part of the experience and landscape of the study spaces and seating areas occupied regularly by library visitors. Each display contains a poster image with instructions on how to access the augmented reality experience through a mobile device.
A special thanks to Daniella Cornejo, Catherine Kennedy, Daelyn Newman, Accalia Rositani, and Lindsey Woods for contributing their exceptional work to the exhibition.