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Participatory Television: Convergence, Crowdsourcing, and Neoliberalism


Corresponding author: Adam Fish; e-mail:


In this article, I assess theories of Internet-enabled public participation as they have been devised to explain the audience participatory projects of Current TV, a global cable and satellite television and Internet video network once partially programmed by nonfiction videos submitted by viewers. I explore how each authors' theory of participation—convergence (H. Jenkins, 2006), crowdsourcing (J. Howe, 2008), and neoliberal participation (J. Hands, 2011)—variously fails and succeeds to historically and culturally situate Current TV within its sociocultural context as a mixed mission and market digital social entrepreneur.