Name: Quanjiao Wang
SID Number: 450433427
Class: Kai’s Wednesday 5pm to 8pm
As we know, in terms of the development of location-based services (LBS), it has experienced several times of revolution. According to Hinton & Hjorth (2013), the first generation of LBSs was only the devices can provide single-use, such as using in higher-end motor vehicles in Australia. And then, they summarize the Second-generation LBSs are GPS or GPS-like services, like Google Maps on smartphones. Nowadays, following the widely use of mobile devices, LBSs adapt for commercial use, and they are applied in newer and more creative ways as well.
Actually, what do the role LBSs play now to the public? On the one side, LBSs can be regarded as one kind of social products. ‘Through the convergence of social, locative and mobile media we are seeing the contested notion of the place becoming even more complicated.’ (Hinton & Hjorth, 2013). According to Hinton & Hjorth, Michel de Certeau gave different defines to space and place. The former means a physical and geographical place, while another one means ‘dinstinct location’.
Hinton & Hjorth (2013) explain that ‘place is a space invested with emotional meaning’, which means a place is given a social attribute. Tim Cresswell (cited in Hinton & Hjorth, 2013) ‘defines a place as a meaningful site that combines location, locale, and sense of place’. Hutchinson (2015) thinks that the places we see in LBSs are a new expression of geographic location with the social and personal. Users show themselves to the public and to their families and friends by using location-based services.
As a new type of social media, the significant function of locative media is asking people to be social. Introduced by Constine (2014), ‘nearby Friends was built by the Glancee location sharing app team led by Andrea Vaccari that Facebook acquired in 2012.’Wilken (2014) says that Facebook tries to sell Places to users via its blog writing that ‘life happens in real time, and so should sharing’, including sharing concrete locations.Using nearby friends this LBS, a user can let his or her friends understand approximately ‘where you are’ and ‘how far away you are from them’. Also, the user can share your exact, real-time location with friends for a limited time. If possible, they can meet in the real place.
It is a very easy way to find someone if he or she surrounds you and is willing to share the location with you. You can meet up and spend time together. Ignoring the privacy and safety issue of the service, ‘nearby Friends could get people spending more time with friends in the real-world instead of online’, said by Constine (2014).
Personally, I think that users are eager to be social if they become ‘fans ‘who are frequently using LBSS. To be specific, when they recognize friends through Facebook nearby friends or other similar apps or sharing their individual stories with specific places where they are, they are delighted to keep close contact with their friends and even strangers. They hope to get concerns from others and interact with others.
It is true that many of us hope to integrate into the society, even specific circles, and using LBSs is a good way for us to communicate with the world. However, in my opinion, when we rely on sharing locations and stories more, we will feel lonelier or more anxious. Although a LBS are convenient for us to socialize, it may lead us to produce dependence. According to Turkle (2012), ‘The moment that people are alone, even for a few seconds, they become anxious, they panic, they fidget, they reach for a device.’
Also, users may describe a place with a deeper cultural meaning through using location-based services,. Hutchinson (2015) provides that ‘Farman notes augmented reality technologies that are coupled with cultural institutions “demonstrate the ways that mobile technologies are able to imbue space with meaning”’Hinton & Hjorth (2013) also say that ‘place cannot be mapped just as a geographic or physical location, but also reflects cultural, emotional and psychological dimensions.’ Furthermore, Hutchinson (2015) indicated that recently, cultural institutions are not only collecting and gathering cultural artifacts, while he states that ‘Chatzidimitris, Kavakli, Economou, and Gavalas (2013) suggest a current trend within cultural institutions is to provide accessible and entertaining projects that enable public access to archive collections.’ Liao & Humphreys (2014) have similar views. They think new mobile technologies can not only impact on how people connect with space and consume space, but also reproduce space with their special code.
As Hutchinson (2015) says, in order to fully understand the influence of LBSs on the relationship between people and space, we need to do some case studies from temporal, cultural and generational contexts. For those AR artists, LBSs can be fantastic cultural products. Take The Border Memorial: Frontera de Los Muertos as an example. It is an augmented reality program, ‘which creates augmented calacas (traditional Oaxacan skeletons commemorating the dead) on places where remains have been found near the US/Mexico border’ (Liao & Humphreys, 2014).
By using the project, people need to walk out into the specific points and read the landscape and stories happened there in the past. Then, the landscape itself begins to be meaningful and colorful. Even a campsite, discarded water bottles or other little details will become very specific. ‘The physical locality is everything to virtual objects’. After invention and application of such services, the place becomes ‘the prompt’ to call for information and users can access to the place without the prior knowledge of it. As The body Border Memorial intervention is intended to ask people to draw attention to the particular place and to memorialize and politicize this place, the place can be developed into the cultural product.
Not only artists but also normal people can create stories about the place they have been. But, we can not recognize whether the information they show is true or not. It may include some falsity. Turtle (2012) criticizes that if things take place in the real time and witnessed by the public, you can not control what you are going to say, how you can describe it. However, all things we present ourselves on the social media platforms, such as posting a location, the texting about the location as what we want them to be. We can edit, change details of the place. Which means ‘we get to retouch, the face, the voice, the flesh.’
Apply LBSs to the campaign
As Hutchinson (2015) said, ‘cultural institutions are not only responsible for collecting and storing cultural artifacts: most are required to provide public access to these collections to facilitate improved citizenry.’In terms of our Con’s campaign, we should not only show the show time or upload some photos or videos on social media. Actually, we also try to use LBSs as one of our approaches to attract more audiences.
From the social perspective, for example, we choose Facebook as one of our campaign platforms. Reviewing our research data, 40% of total users choose to use Facebook because ‘friends use it’ and 31% of users choose as ‘family use it’ (Sensis, 2016). So, Facebook is a good platform for our target audiences to share concert information with their friends and families. After listening to one charming concert, the audiences can share their experience with additional location information and encourage their friend to join it together next time.
From the cultural aspect, in particular, we use hashtags like #datewithcon and #becharmwithmusic to encourage people to share an image and comment about a place through LBSs, and we hope the audiences can create different ways to experience and record journeys. Therefore, in turn, impact upon how the place is memorialized. These posts can be regarded as cultural reproduction by the audiences. Especially for those amateur players (our secondary audiences) who are interested in music, they can be more positive to visit our concerts after reading those posts. Therefore, I think LBSs can promote cultural exchange in this area.
Constine, J. (2017). Facebook Launches “Nearby Friends” With Opt-In Real-Time Location Sharing To Help You Meet Up. TechCrunch. Retrieved 26 April 2017, from https://techcrunch.com/2014/04/17/facebook-nearby-friends/
Hjorth, L., & Hinton, S. (2013). Social, Locative and Mobile Media. In Understanding Social Media (pp. 120–135). London: SAGE.
Hutchinson, J. (2015). The Future of Digital Archive Collections: Augmenting Public Service Media Geolocative Archives. Mobile Media & Communication, Forthcoming.
Liao, T., & Humphreys, L. (2014). Layar-ed places: Using mobile augmented reality to tactically reengage, reproduce, and reappropriate public space. New Media & Society, Online, 1-18.
Sensis Social Media Report 2016.(2016). How Australian people and businesses are using social media.Retrieved 25 April 2017, from https://www.sensis.com.au/asset/PDFdirectory/Sensis_Social_Media_Report_2016.PDF
Turkle, S. (2017). Connected, but alone?. Ted.com. Retrieved 25 April 2017, from https://www.ted.com/talks/sherry_turkle_alone_together?language=en
Wilken, R. (2014). Places Nearby: Facebook as a location-based social media platform. New Media & Society, 16(7), 1087-1103.