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AQA Media Studies MEST3 New/Digital Media Sec B Exemplar

Grace Cottrell | Wednesday June 10, 2015


Analyse how the BBC use new media to engage their audience in the Laura K murder mystery

Exemplar A* Grade Student Essay 48/48

Grace Cottrell, Sale Grammar School

As a public service broadcaster, the BBC aim to engage all audience groups across the UK. The use of a cross platform approach engages the ‘social media generation’ audience members who have more fragmented consumption and therefore may not be engaged in weekly television dramas such as soaps. Online media can be self-scheduled and therefore engages a wider audience demographic of young people. Viewers can interact and comment on the Facebook, Twitter and website message boards, linked by the hashtag #LasthoursofLauraK. This synergy engages the audience as it encourages them to take an active part in investigating, prolonging the time spent on the site as the viewer tries to find clues within the videos and social media accounts.

The Facebook and Twitter platforms engage users, allowing them to communicate with other audience members. Shaun Moore theorised that this creates an ‘imagined community’ who are all working towards a common goal.

The BBC utilise conventions of the murder mystery genre, usually limited to traditional broadcast platforms such as TV and film. An important characteristic of this genre is the use of narrative enigma. The producers provide the audience with a multitude of potential suspects to investigate, each with their own social media presence. The audience have to take an active part in investigating in order to uncover the murderer and their motives as Stuart Hall theorised that meaning is interpreted in the form of decoding codes and conventions; the producers provide the background information about the murder and the timescale so the audience know to decode the possible clues from the texts. Therefore, narrative resolution can only be achieved through audience participation making it an effective strategy for engaging and maintaining...

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