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Reconstructing past media ecologies: The 1960s generation in Sweden

Journal article
Authors Mats Björkin
Published in European Journal of Communication
Volume 30
Issue 1
Pages 50-63
ISSN 0267-3231
Publication year 2015
Published at Department of Cultural Sciences
Pages 50-63
Language en
Keywords Do-it-yourself, historical audience research, home electronics, Sweden, television
Subject categories Media Studies, Studies on Film


This article examines how an analysis of a broader media ecology of a particular generation can offer a more complex account of past audience habits than the ones we gain from quantitative audience ratings based on one medium alone. It also shows how past surveys can be put to use anew within new theoretical frameworks. The main argument is based on a cultural studies–inspired interpretation of a home electronics survey, conducted by the Swedish public service radio’s research unit in 1985. The main focus is on members of the cohort born during the 1960s, who grew up with television and quickly became avid television users. The longitudinal analysis of television preferences within the broader media ecology of this generation sheds new light on the relationships between different media, but also on the long-term impact that a particular media ecology may have on one’s engagement with the media at later stages of life.

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