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Chapter 7: Creative Industries

Some of the concepts introduced at the beginning of this chapter—the creative class (Florida) and cognitive surplus (Shirky)—are actually pretty controversial. One of the fun things about the Internet is the way in which you can follow these controversies in real time, if they are happening now, or retrospectively. Try the following a search strategies:

  • “theory of the creative class Florida”
  • “theory of cognitive surplus Shirky”

and then add “criticism” to each strategy.

Sample Results:

Interestingly, the Wikipedia page (for me) comes up at the top of the list no matter what. This may be because Wikipedia aims to maintain a “neutral point of view” and often includes critiques within its articles. Also, I had to cheat a bit to find a good criticism of Shirky (Lehrer, but I could have picked Carr, who is even more vehement. Here is a good review of both).

The Internet is full of information about creativity. TED even has a whole category of videos about the topic. Amazon also has a category for it. And there are over 2 million YouTube videos tagged with that as a key word.

Machinima is the art of making movies using a computer game as the scenery and characters. The world’s best known site for it is Machinima.com, but you can find additional sites such as Scoop.it! and Sigve and, of course, Wikipedia’s page.

Almost every country has a creative strategy these days. Many are highlighted in the textbook. You can have a fun afternoon (well, some might not think it was that fun) typing variants of “creative strategy policy ” into your favourite Internet search engine. Here is the one for Australia.

Most of the people identified on the topic of creative cities have appeared on YouTube. Here is Charles Landry. Here is Charles Leadbeater in a TED Talk, and here is Richard Florida (now a professor at University of Toronto).