Narrowing My Field Site

At first glance, the media niche of A24 seems confined enough. However, to develop detailed ethnographic research, it’s important to narrow the field site—”the spatial characteristics of a field-based research project, the stage on which the social processes under study take place” (Burrell, 2009).

The image below outlines the field in which my study will take place, including some of the many aspects which manipulate the way I experience A24 and its fan-base.

A24 Field Map

As you can see, I’ve positioned myself within the diagram connecting myself directly to aspects of A24 which I participate in. As my research project will be auto-ethnographic, I found it important to consider myself within the field map (Wall, 2006). Additionally, I’ve included aspects which I don’t directly participate in (such as the film-makers and products) as they still have significant impacts on my experience with my media niche.

Social Media

A24 has developed a solid following on social media sites, helping to promote their films and occasionally share behind the scenes photos. However, A24 doesn’t use social media in the same way as other films or companies. They very rarely interact with fans and they have a very formal and official media personality.

The reason the social media aspect was added to the field map brings me to my next point.

Audience

The A24 audience is very active on social media, bringing a lot of extra life and insight to the films. They’re very open-minded and informative, and their passion for film brings forth some very interesting conversations. From discussion posts to fan-art, A24 fans bring their passion to social media to create a great community.

I’ve never seen an audience support production companies in such a way before. I touched upon this more thoroughly in my media niche blog post (and I plan on talking about it in more detail in the future), but the audience behind A24 is part of what makes A24 so interesting.

While the above two points relate to me the most (as I’m a huge A24 fan who creates fan art and is active on social media), it’s still very important to talk about the other aspects too.

Products

A24 produces very unique products, which I believe is why the audience is so strong. Not only is the merchandise interesting and unique, but the films always have an indie-flare despite their growing success. When you sign up for anything A24, you know exactly what you’ll be getting—something new and outstanding.

Film-Makers

Finally, without the directors, writers, and actors, A24 wouldn’t be what it is today. The members involved in the making of every single A24 film have passion, drive, and thought-provoking ideas which truly makes each film stand out in a crowd.

While the final two points don’t directly affect me, without them, A24 simply would not exist. For that reason, I found it important to mention in the field map and I will explore the topics further in the final report.

Edited September 3rd to add information and reference to Sarah Wall.

References:

Burrell, Jenna (2009) ‘The Field Site as a Network: A Strategy for Locating Ethnographic Research’, Field Methods, 21:2, 181–199.File 

Wall, Sarah (2006) An Autoethnography on Learning about Autoethnography, International Journal of Qualitative Methods 5 (2).File 

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