BitTorrent’s Produsage



Is the collaborative and continuous building and extending of existing content in pursuit of further improvement (Bruns, 2007). There are four key characteristics for Produsage outlined by Bruns; organisation shift, fluid movement, permissive, and unfinished (2007). These characteristics are incorporated in BitTorrent, which is why it is such a successful convergent media technology.

“Organisation shift is a shift from dedicated individuals and teams as producers to a broader-based, distributed generation of content by a wide community of participants” (Bruns, 2007) BitTorrent and torrenting in general was originally for people from a technological background, and was often regarded as hacking or pirating. The fluid movement of produsers between roles as leaders, participants, and users of content enables produsers to have backgrounds ranging from professional to amateur (Bruns 2007). BitTorrent is easily accessible on the web, anyone with a internet connection is able to access the content that it provides. A larger audiences is targeted, with the help of popular media, users are able to watch the latest content instantly anywhere in the world.

“Produsage is based on permissive regimes of engagement which are based on merit more than ownership: they frequently employ copyright systems which acknowledge authorship and prohibit unauthorised commercial use, yet enable continuing collaboration on further content improvement” (Bruns 2007). Users can download a media file from BitTorrent then edit the program and re upload then new content enabling further content improvement. Bruns states that “artefacts generated are no longer products in a traditional sense they are always unfinished, and continually under development such development is evolutionary” (2007)

BitTorrent directly engages with Bruns four key characteristics of organisation shift, permissive, unfinished and fluid movements. Engaging in all characteristics allows BitTorrent to converge and survive in the digital age.


Bruns, Axel (2007) Produsage: Towards a Broader Framework for User-Led Content Creation. In Proceedings Creativity & Cognition 6, Washington, DC

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