Convergence Culture:Travel Like A Local!

When I started to think about a case, Localyte came to my mind immediately. It’s a social-networking website that users can contact individuals and services in specific travel locations.  Like the website shows, ” brings travelers and Localytes together to promote authentic travel experiences.”

Localyte is a good example to display the media participation. As in Deuze’s article (P.246), “this process of amplified interaction the process of media production and dissemination also becomes more transparent and open to external intervention, giving users increasing powers of access both outside and within corporate industrial contexts.” The users are all over the world, and they can either look for travel information or provide their local data. In fact, it is not just a website concerns travel information, it’s a platform for interaction and getting knowledge. Once I saw a user asked ” Is Pekin the capital of China? Or is it Beijing?”  A Dutch who’s been in Beiijng for a while answered immediately and very informative. It’s a good place to meet new friends or even to find a part-time job as well. In addition, the site’s got a good point system to improve the quality of the content that is fair and could increase the quality of content created by the community.  The system rewards good answers by letting travelers and other Localytes vote on the answers. These votes translate directly into additional points.

Here I’d like to share some of my personal experience about Localyte. Since I’m a travel person, I sign up to become a localyte as soon as I saw it on Facebook. The users of Localyte are either professional tour guides, agents working in travel agencies or just like me.  At first I used to just check the site to answer some questions about Beijing and earn some points, but this April, a couple from Russia left me a message that they were coming to Beijing in June to celebrate their anniversary and would like to do some sightseeing. I didn’t expect that because I’ve never thought someone would ask me personally like I’m an expert. Then we began to discuss about their itinerary, historical sites they’d like to see, restaurants, hotels etc. They learned some Chinese culture and I learned some Russian too. I think it demonstrated  “where people are engaged in the collaborative production of ‘we media’ “.

Localyte was acquired by NileGuide in May,2010. I think it’s because Localyte is a good one of creative industries, according to the British Department of Culture, Media and Sport in 1998, “those industries which have their origin in individual creativity, skill and talent and which have a potential for wealth and job creation through the generation and exploitation of intellectual property.” After this acquisition, NileGuide beefed up its content and enlarged it’s community.


2 responses to this post.

  1. “The system rewards good answers by letting travelers and other Localytes vote on the answers.” There are a lot of different sites that use this kind of vote up/down system, and sometimes there is a kind of payment system (in points), with questions also getting some points, but answers getting more points than questions.

    Do you think some of the people on the site are trying to find a romantic encounter? I looked at Prague, and it seemed like a lot of men have written their profiles there … sort of like a dating site!


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