The Value of Representation: Toward a Critique of Networked Television Performance

Christian, Aymar Jean
International Journal of Communication

By changing the relations of production and exhibition, networked Internet (digital, peer-to-peer) distribution offers ways to experiment with representations different from legacy (linear, one-to-many) network distribution. To advance a theory of value in representation, I founded the platform Open TVbeta to develop queer, intersectional television in Chicago and online. I present a framework for assessing representational value through case studies of producing and exhibiting three local, queer, artist-driven pilots in Chicago. I argue that small-scale development processes restructure the politics of representation in television and art, allowing us to see value and innovation where it has historically been hidden in performances of cultures, organizations, and technologies of exhibition.