Careers in Culture – Digital Media: "The Interactive Zone"

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Defining the indefinable – Digital Media!

The definition of Digital Media production is constantly changing as the boundaries of technology expand each day. There are endless possibilities as the space expands and converges. Some think about Digital Media as consumer experiences on a screen and across a range of platforms: web-based or mobile, on computers or televisions, smart phones, tablets or game consoles. Digital Media also includes work in 3-D animation, digital video or music, mobile or online videogames, podcasts, e-anything such as e-books, e-mail, e-commerce, e-learning, etc…

Ask any five people working in Digital Media what Digital Media is, and you get five different answers. Why? Because Digital Media encompasses so many different things. Digital Media's purpose casts a large net, to entertain, inform and educate. Some find it easier to think of interactive Digital Media industry as encompassing two sectors:

  1. Content creator – any person or company that is involved in creating "digital content". A simple way to think about this is work that ends up on a screen for you, "an end-user", to look at or actively participate with. Maybe you'll be watching a movie, downloading a mobile app or playing a videogame. Screens could include cinema, TV, videogames console devices, computers/internet, media storage devices like PVRs, mobile and handheld devices.

  2. Creation & distribution enablers – There are so many kinds of workers required to get a digital project or service "to market", to you, the consumer's hands. Behind the scenes, the "back-end" process involves computer software engineers and programmers, who might have specialization in areas such as artificial intelligence, graphics, physics, animation, network, or user-interface technologists, etc… These are the tech people who design the applications allowing for the creation or distribution of the content to you, the user. Business people who assist and facilitate in the sales, marketing, distribution, public relations, human resources, financial and project management of Digital Media projects are also key. There are countless occupations and opportunities!

Basically in Digital Media production, digital files are created, enhanced, encoded and distributed using different methods of processing via computer, hardware and software applications. Digital Media content creators rely on creative content production and cutting edge technology to produce goods that are cultural in nature, such as interactive games, virtual worlds, cross-platform media and other forms of interactive content and environments.

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