The Rise of Digital Multimedia Systems

Main Article Content

Ross Gibson


With this essay, I want to understand why interactive and relational media forms have become so ubiquitous so quickly. Comparing the nexus of cinema and nationalism with the contemporary dyad of digital media and transnationalism (or globalisation), we can ask whether digital multimedia systems have arisen to reflect and impel our contemporary psychic and social conditions. Because multimedia rarely gets ‘locked-off’, its component elements can always be pulled apart, sent back to their databases and then instantaneously rearranged into newly iterated federations. In this respect it is like our unstable contemporary lives, so buffeted with ever-altering values, opportunities, anxieties and obligations all upwelling because of globalisation, migration and multiculturalism.

Article Details

Ecologies and Environments (Peer Reviewed)
Author Biography

Ross Gibson, University of Technology Sydney

ROSS GIBSON is Professor of New Media and Digital Culture at the University of Technology, Sydney. Recent works include the book Seven Versions of an Australian Badland (University of Queensland Press, 2003) and the installation Street X-Rays (Australian Centre for the Moving Image, 2004–5).