Social Media

The Old Siberian Town in New Media.
In Search of Cultural Codes

Irina V. Guzhova

New media, as a factor of the globalization process, extend the boundaries and promote intercultural communications. Nowadays, when choosing their travelling destinations, international travellers, no matter who they are (tourists, business people, migrants or students), they start with investigating sites of travel companies and city Internet-portals. Therefore, to attract potential visitors to a certain town or city it is essential to present it in the right way in the new media contents.

However, there is a certain difficulty with on-line presentation of small towns with long history and old architecture. The problem is that the pretension of the new media to universalism necessarily conflicts with the positioning of a unique object. In other words, for effective online positioning and creating a unique image of such towns in the minds of potential visitors and investors, it is insufficient to use only new media technologies. To prove the fact we have investigated a great number of municipal sites of different towns and cities and found out that they look very much alike. To ensure the effective positioning of a small town on the World Wide Web it is necessary to figure out the corresponding visual culture codes (U. Eco, N. Luhmann, Y. Lotman, K. Rapay). We consider that the codes must both reflect the object uniqueness and meet the target audience expectations and stereotypes.

The possibility of using this approach is introduced in the report by an example of an old Siberian town – Tomsk (founded in 1604). We believe that the wooden architecture of the town has great potential as a visual culture code.

Biographical Notes
Specialist in the field of cultural studies, Candidate of Sciences (PhD); Associate Professor at the Department of Social Communication at National Research Tomsk State University (TSU). Member of the Organization Committee of the International Scientific-Practical Internet Conference «Connect-Universum 2012»; member of the Organization Committee of the Regional Round of Russian Competition for PR Students ‹Crystal Orange›, thesis supervisor. Author of 15 publications on the philosophy of holiday, also on the theory and practice of social communication.



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Institute for Architecture
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