My understanding of remixes is that they are formed when independent media pieces are joined to create an entirely new form of media with a differing meaning from the original. Filmmaker Johan Söderberg (2007) describes remixes nicely, stating that they are “just like cooking. In your cupboard in your kitchen you have lots of different things and you try to connect different tastes together to create something interesting.”
These remixes are new and refreshing online developments, but they are part of an ancient tradition: the recycling of old culture to make new. All creators throughout time have stood “on the shoulders of giants” as Isaac Newton (1676) states.
However, over time these remixes, specifically music related, have being completely revolutionised and increased in frequency as a result of the rapid changes in technology which “allow us to pick apart media and put it back together in new and different … and very exciting ways” – Kreisinger (2011). The opportunities to mix-up, change and reinvent sounds are now massively wide-spread and simple, as Söderberg (2007) explains, “you can do (video remix) almost for free on your own computer”. The convergence culture of our society, with hundreds of different technologies being shoved inside smaller and more powerful technologies has provided more people with the power to create, which means that many more do. Instead of simply listening to remixes as an audience, users are becoming produsers, using readily-available technology to interpret and remodel media in their own ways, either on their own or through collaboration with other produsers. This use of already existent media to create remixes is not simply copying. Lessig (2008) provides the analogy of sounds being used like “paint on a palette. But all the paint has been scratched off of other paintings”. That is essentially what convergent technology has enabled: unique and beautiful paintings that are only possible to paint with the colours from other paintings.
The process of convergence has enabled users to both create and enjoy many things throughout the media, but in my opinion, the most exciting and entertaining is the phenomenon that is the remix culture.
My favourite remix-
Moore, C. 2014, ‘Rip/Mix/Burn: music sampling and the rise of remix culture′, lecture, BCM112, University of Wollongong, delivered 29 April 2014.