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Crossmedia Innovations

Texts, Markets, Institutions

Indrek Ibrus and Carlos A. Scolari

Crossmedia and transmedia are keywords of increasing importance for media professionals and scholars alike. Although these phenomena are older than sometimes argued, the affordances of digital networked media have radically enriched the nature of «crossmedia strategies» of media industries. As such crossmedia is an emergent practice that arises as one of the core sources of complexity and innovation for late modern cultures. This edited volume includes chapters by authors from three continents who approach the phenomenon from different disciplinary angles: semiotics, cultural studies, media economics, political economy, innovation studies. The common interest lies in the dynamics that lead to experiments with crossmedia and in how our cultures are innovated through such practices.

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2 Crossmedia innovations: Economic

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The fandom menace or the phantom author? On sharecropping, crossmedia and copyright Joan Ramon Rodríguez-Amat and Katharine Sarikakis ‘I am your father’ Darth Vader, the villain, reveals it to Luke Skywalker, the hero, while struggling to kill each other. Star Wars Episode V, The Empire Strikes Back (Dir. Keshner, I., 1980) Introduction: from Darth Vader to authorship The father of Darth Vader, George Lucas, is a cultural icon creator, but also a major owner. The ‘Star Wars’ universe is in his hands. The official web- sites related to the Star Wars saga offer numerous spaces that encourage fan activity and creativity, such as mashups and remixes. But, they also state clearly: You agree that, as between you and Lucas, Lucas owns all right, title and interest, including, all intellectual property rights, in and to the Lucas Technology. You shall not acquire any right, title or interest therein, except for the limited rights expressly set forth in this Agreement. Any rights not expressly granted herein, are reserved to Lucas. (Lucasfilm Ltd 2011: Article 8) ‘George Lucas owns everything. All rights reserved’ argued Lawrence Lessig (2010) in a TED Talk. The Harvard Professor used the analogy of sharecrop- pers in the south states of the USA to explain how the creator of the mashups published on the Star Wars websites concedes all rights to Lucas to exploit world-wide indefinitely. Lucas’ pursuit for his creation is well known. He protects more than his work by exerting extraordinary legal pressure upon fans and...

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