New Screen Ecology in India - Smith Mehta

GDS Luncheon Book Talk


New Screen Ecology in India is an open access book that provides an in depth exploration of the digital transformation of the Indian media industries. Smith Mehta’s debut book makes a persuasive case for a theoretical framework that acknowledges complex interdependencies and informalities in a broader network of digital infrastructures, rather than a siloed, single sector, or cohort of creators.

New screen ecology

Through first-hand research with creators, platform and portal executives, and intermediaries such as talent agents and multi-channel networks, Mehta develops the concept of the 'new screen ecology' that accommodates both platforms and ‘portals’ (Amanda Lotz’s name for internet-distributed television, or IDTV) as sites of study. The book builds on the historical formal-informal dynamics of the Indian film and television industries to highlight the top-down and bottom-up creator and content-based linkages between creators, streaming services and intermediaries.

Digital transformation

By interrogating the production practices of 13 different platforms and portals, including Hotstar, Netflix, YouTube, and Amazon Prime Video, the book makes a significant contributions to the understanding of digital transformation of Indian media industries, whether be his focus on creator labor, intersectional analysis of gendered digital production cultures, focus on intermediary work or the political, social and cultural significance of non-mainstream Indian language creations such as Marathi and Bengali to the Indian new screen ecology.

A free copy to the book can be accessed here.

Smith Mehta

Smith Mehta is Assistant Professor in the Center for Media and Journalism Studies at University of Groningen, Netherlands. He holds a Doctor of Philosophy in Creative Industries (2021) from the Queensland University of Technology, Australia. He is a critical media industries scholar, having published on issues related to creative labor, digital distribution, and cultural economy in leading journals such as Media, Culture and Society, Television and New Media, and International Journal of Cultural Studies.' Smith has previously worked in Viacom18 Media Pvt. Ltd as a content producer.

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Open Access: New Screen Ecology in India