What Has Streaming Done to Television? Platform Interfaces and Contemporary Viewing

Presented by: Dr Elliott Logan

Date: Friday 5 March 2021
Time: 12–1pm
Location: Online via Zoom


The scholarship on television streaming tends to discuss the medium’s transformation in the platform era by highlighting how streaming services have disrupted the television industry. In this paper, I propose instead that streaming’s impact on television as a medium is most deeply based in the user interfaces of streaming platforms, which alter the way we view, interact with, and value television programming. The paper aims to clarify the questions that are pertinent to an appreciation of these aesthetic shifts, and to demonstrate how an under-utilised essay on television aesthetics, written at an earlier moment of transition for the medium, might help us to answer them. Ultimately, I will suggest that rather than representing a disruptive break from what television used to be, streaming platforms extend and amplify qualities of attention that have distinguished television as a medium throughout its history. 


Dr Elliott Logan is a casual academic tutor in the School of Communication and Arts. He is the author of Breaking Bad and Dignity (Palgrave Macmillan, 2016), and has published a number of essays in film and television criticism. He is currently writing a book on performance in serial television drama for Rutgers University Press.



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