Reflecting on Transnational Media and Cultural Industries


Reflecting on my BCM288 Transnational Media and Cultural industries experience, I have found that it has allowed me to open my eyes to a range of different subjects to do with film and digital media companies, consumers and the abundance of creative and cultural content flows happening in the world and especially Australia.

While taking this subject I have found exploring television programs audiences and consumers, especially when looking at the block and other kinds of reality TV shows and how barriers between privacy have been demolished in a way. This was brought up in week 2 and 3, where the example of the office was brought up to show the comparison between two different cultural groups and how one was more successful and engaging than the other. I found this topic to be really interesting which is why I decided to further look into the differences between specific TV adaptions with the example of skins. Looking into the reality TV show adaptions was also a really interesting topic. When looking at this we explored the reality show Masterchef and its ability to translate a wide range of audiences around the world.

1464729048.jpgExploring the idea of Piracy and Diasporic media was also very interesting and I gain a lot of information from this topic. Using the global south as an example allowed for the idea of audiences and their interaction to be explored, especially when considering how audiences respond and interact with the media. For example, it was said that the global South’s piracy issue was enough to create corruption and also hinder the development of filmmakers and their profit made which would affect their living conditions. Although I believed at the start that piracy in some regards did allow for a legitimate way for media to be shared my beliefs in the end when doing further research changed. At the start, I believed that the idea of sharing these medias through piracy did allow for a form of distribution, which then benefitted the producers as these kinds of films like Nollywood would become more well known and shared around the globe. However, doing further research into the topic allowed me to realise that just because people are gaining these media through the internet does not necessarily mean that the producers are benefiting from it. This topic has then opened my eyes towards my habits towards piracy and has made me re-think my ways.

Virtual cosmopolitanism was another idea that was very new to me, it’s basically when two or more cultures come together and create a hybrid culture which contains aspects of the previous cultures and puts them together in a way that creates a new unique type of cultural characteristics. Learning this in class allowed me to further open my eyes to different types of cultures and what happens when they merge together.

Overall my BCM288 experience has been a positive one, definitely filled will a whole new list of words to learn and understand. The concepts explored within this subject were really interesting and I think in some way they still apply to this certain point in time. By learning about these topics my view of some things has definitely changed and I have gained a more solid idea of culture and also the way that it interacts with media and the people around the world.


Australian Co-Productions – Children Shows

coproduction5.jpgCo-production provides a means to pool financial, creative and technical resources from participating countries for the production of film and television programs. These productions enhance the collaboration between countries that have small production industries which allow for a pool of resources and the ability for the country to compete in an international market. Co-productions are governed by official treaties which allow for a variety of public funding mechanisms and an increase in production budgets.

Co-productions show an increasingly interconnected global economy and cultural forms and expressions. By converging content, the development of new program formats produced for global distribution like reality TV shows or hybrid programs which are composed of different genre elements.

Screen Shot 2016-11-04 at 3.08.13 pm.pngIn Australia, coordinating industrial funding with other countries needs to satisfy the audiences tastes and markets of both territories can be an interesting task. Overall most drama productions have been programs for children. Co-production in children drama is more likely to attract foreign finance than general drama for adults. This would mainly be because of the animation factor when an animation is involved it is easier to partner with a country because there is not reliance on location shooting on either territory. As well as this, the animation is quite easily dynamic and diverse as it allows for a change in accents and languages which I helpful when translating certain animations to fit a country or culture.

dgAustralia has been involved in quite a few co-productions which involve animation, which can be quite quirky for lack of a better word. Dead gorgeous for example is one of them, it follows the adventure of three sisters who are ghosts trying to fit in the new century. This co-production was made in 2010 with the United Kingdom and was a big hit (well my sister definitely thinks so). This production has also screened in multiple territories throughout Europe and has another series in development.  Other great production would have to 265140_l_1460687022include Erky Perky, which is another quirky animation series. This series has 78 episodes and has been nominated for a number of awards. Erky Perky is a co-production animation with Canada who is our main co-producer. Both Erky Perks and Dead gorgeous are still replaying in Australia today on ABC3, and don’t seem to be stopping anytime soon.

Using co-productions with other countries has a great benefit for Australia, especially in relation to films and other mediums. Australia has an advantage to signing up to co-productions, as it gets us out there in the competitive market and allows for collaboration with a bunch of different countries. I, however, think that it also brings some negatives, including the loss of full production control but also the problem of satisfying both of the audience’s taste. A lot of cultural translations would be lost in the process in order to include both the audiences with the media.

Translating Comedy and Drama Across Cultures

Television in translation is the process of translating media across different cultures. These translations rely heavily on the cultures themselves and how they run in order for their respective audiences to effectively engage in them. The most important aspect is the audience and how the individuals with differing cultures understand and interpret the chosen translated medias. The propensity for local programming adaptions is prompted by the cultural proximity principle, where audiences become attracted to a cultural product that is close in cultural context and style to the audiences own cultures, like dress, style, humour or historical references (Moran, 2009).

This idea of television in translation or even the cultural proximity principle is an important part of translating comedy and drama to a particular nation of culture because without it the medias would not depict everyday life aspects of that culture which would mean that it would not appeal to that audience.

skins-uk-vs-skins-us-il-diavolo-e-l-acqua-santa_h_partb.jpgAn example of translating comedy and drama in TV series is very much highlighted in the series ‘Skins’. Skins is a television show which focuses on the story of a group of teens who are trying to grow up and discover themselves. Skins is an emotional mosh-pit which slams through the insanity of teenage years, from drugs, sex, disorders, friendships and relationships.

Skins was originally a very successful series developed to appeal to a UK audience. The series became very well known for being frank and honest about the descriptions of large.jpgteenage-like and what it was like to grow up in the times of self-discovery. As the UK version of skins was very successful and ranged a number of several series, it received worldwide acclaim which leads to the US attempting to adapt and re-create their own version of the series.

The US audience, however, criticised this adaption of the depiction of the issues shown in the show. This lead to a lot of the episodes being highly censored and a lot of critics claiming that the show was very damaging and dangerous for children to watch because of the mass array of topics which are delved into. Later on, the season was cancelled due to its content ad lack of popularity with the US audience.

Skins is definitely a great example to use in the case of translating comedy and drama from one culture to another, as it very much highlights the differences between the UK and US audience and how they interpreted this series. The series definitely highlights the negative effects of translating comedy and drama across cultures and what can happen when its done in a way that doesn’t appeal to the translated audience. TV shows, in the end, are proof of their own nation and culture. The content, feel of the TV series and tone leaves a lasting impression on culture of a series, so when it’s taken out of its original setting or environment it can loose its spark and identity if you aren’t careful



  • Moran, A., 2009. TV formats worldwide: localizing global programs. Intellect books.

Consuming Reality TV


Consuming reality TV shows has become a constant in the lives of some and even for myself personally. Why we watch reality TV shows is often a source of debate, but it always comes down to our growing fascination and desire to fantasise about the prospect of acquired fame and our ability to somehow relate to the ‘reality’ perceived. From the ‘Bachelor’, ‘The Block’, ‘Neighbours’ or even ‘Teen Mom’, out afternoons are filled with enough drama that we can’t help but soak it all up.

So why do we feel compelled to watch these shows?

Screen Shot 2014-05-02 at 12.55.40 PM.pngWith this genre of television, the privacy barrier becomes obliterated. Because of the style of filming and the ability to reach these TV reality stars on social media it makes audiences feel as if they were their friends and that we know everything about them. The audience becomes obsessed with the actors on TV and starts to construct relationships with them and other people through social medias like Instagram. In doing this it allows for the media platform to forge connections and encourage the involvement of ordinary day to day people in the lives of the extraordinary people.

9-2942706-scn040915block3_t460.jpgThe idea of taking an average citizen and turning them into someone famous, which leads to the changing of their social status is a true fantasy for some reality show junkies. An example of this idea would be the block contestants or even Masterchef contestants. In the beginning of both shows, the contestants are seen as an average day to day people. On the Block, there are a couple of people who are tradies or have some kind of building background where others are just people there to have fun and learn how to build without any previous styling or building knowledge. This is very clearly highlighted when the 2015 team contestants Whitney and Andrew, who had no previous experience before hand and were thrown into the deep end when the series started and ended up not doing as well as they had hoped.

Reality shows are compelling because they aren’t geared towards just one audience, they are attractive to different age groups, races, genders, weights and heights and even sexual preferences in our society.

Reality shows are compelling because they aren’t geared towards just one audience, they are attractive to different age groups, races, genders, weights and heights and even sexual preferences in our society. We are being bombarded by reality TV shows because they have lower production costs and have become increasingly popular over the years. Reality TV shows have also allowed for a range of 1418061587_extras_noticia_foton_7_1topics that wouldn’t necessarily be talked about to be broadcasted to a global audience. An example of this would be the Kardashians and the transformation Bruce Jenner into Caitlyn, this change sparked the worldwide public to talk about this topic and also bring awareness to the transgendered community.

With reality television on the rise, the difference between public and private spaces will be diminished for those involved, which could definitely be seen as a negative aspect of the genre. However, it could be said that this could be celebrated by the audience and the people involved as a new form of participatory democracy.