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Digital media and culture in the Netherlands


The history of the term ‘digital media’ goes back further.  In 1996, several Dutch organisations, including V2, Steim and Waag Society, established the Virtual Platform. The platform’s first policy plan, 'From DADA to DATA'[1], noted the importance of the development of digital media and culture in the Netherlands and the various ways in which this might be handled.

The publication ‘E-culture: cultural policy for innovation’ by Virtual Platform uses the term ‘e-culture’ in the Dutch context: 'One of the key tasks of Virtual Platform is to advise the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science on its policy concerning new media and culture – what could be referred to as ‘E-culture’, or Electronic culture (as opposed to E-commerce).’[2]

In June 2012, the Netherlands Institute for Social Research further investigated e-culture in a publication entitled E-cultuur: Een empirische verkenning.’ (‘E-culture: An Empirical Analysis’) [3]. In this publication, the authors recognised that, with the emergence of information and communication technology (ICT), ‘opinions, skills and behaviours that play a central role in our daily lives’ are changing. The study outlines a gradual cultural shift, exploring a transformation from a textual or visual culture to e-culture.

  1. Virtual Platform, From DADA to DATA (February 1996).
  2. Virtual Platform, E-culture: Cultural Policy for Innovation, Amsterdam: Virtual Platform (July 1999)
  3. Haan, Jos de; Frank Huysmans (20 June 2002). "E-cultuur: een empirische verkenning". Netherlands Institute for Social Research. ISBN 9037700926, issue 2002-8.