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Contemporary artists, new media artists, activists*


Contemporary arts

Since the technology is becoming ubiquitous in everyday life, what was known as new media art is now blending into other contemporary art practices. A majority of the contemporary artists use digital tools to create new narratives or to give presentations of their work regardless of the critique of its media context. Digital photography, digital video, digital editing, projection, and screening are the main tools used for such purposes. Online productivity tools such as shared documents, wiki, online project management, and contact lists are getting popular in the cultural industry. Distributed discussions among the contemporary artists take place via hosted services like Blogger, Wordpress, or Tumblr. It helps them to keep their audiences updated about their news, events, and new work. They link to each other, or comment on each others' blog posts. The actors of the “cultural sector” tend to use social networks services. Twitter and FriendFeed are used for sharing events, for discussion on theory and politics, and for sharing links about anything. Facebook is mostly used by event organizers for event invitations, photo tagging, and gossip in general.



 A few artists use digital media to develop critique on the media itself as well as its techno-social and techno-political context. For such artists, software and systems are not tools for reworking data such as a digital photo or digital video, but the writing of the concept in text and code is the core of the artwork.


 One of the most interesting uses of social media platforms is the organization of activism against the Turkish government's schizophrenic internet censorship. Protests move from online discussions, to online campaigns, to street actions. Academics, students, artists, and industry experts all organize on Twitter, FriendFeed, Facebook, Google Groups, independent email lists, or even via SMS.


Journalist-turned-bloggers survive economically by writing independently as well as contributing to more traditional newspapers. Technology focused blogs write about industry locally and globally. Programmers develop tutorials and guides in their writings. Bloggers’ costs are mostly compensated by the banner ads. Collective curating on blogs is getting popular. Artists produce critical commentary streams in the form of posters and writing. They focus on topics from internet cultural perspective to everyday political news.


Interactive agencies, some independent some incorporated in traditional ad agencies, produce the most general purpose commercial digital work. The Promoqube new media company provides social media monitoring services and maintains Facebook pages for companies. The 41? 29! new media studio produces viral advertising campaigns and advergames. Internet video and Internet TV startups such as Uzman.TV and Television create the most informative and thus useful hybrid TV-video content.



 Yogurt Technologies is an established new media production company. Its founder Cemil Türün pioneered advertising focused online games. Today, the company develops a SecondLife like virtual world called Yogurtistan (Yogurtistan.com), which works on the web and aims to grow with a virtual currency system. This type of alternative economy models are hard to flourish, but could be economically substantial in the long run.


Hackers and creative coders

 Hacker identities are rarely known. When a hacking happens in Turkey, it is almost all the time for political and ideological purposes, rather than for the sake of hacking. Nationalism and right wing ideologies are dominant in such hacking cases.