User contributed content

User contributed content, a concept also known as ‘consumer-generated media’ (CGM), ‘user-created content’ (UCC) or ‘user-generated content’ (UGC), refers to various kinds of media content that are contributed to a project by the end-users. It is also often referred to as ‘conversational media’ or ‘two-way media’, signifying that a website’s audience is becoming ‘active’ rather than ‘passive’, which is an important characteristic of ‘Web 2.0’.

Types of media used include text, images, video and audio, and the forms that this content may take include blogs, wikis, product reviews, podcasts, and eyewitness reports and photographs relating to news stories. Content is often created using open source software, in order to facilitate communication and collaboration between users. It can be made publically accessible, or restricted to a small group of fellow users.

It is often advisable for a website administrator to monitor user contributed content, in order to ensure that it is relevant to the topic(s) of the site; that it does not infringe copyright, and that it is not offensive to other users. Moderation can take place before or after the content has been published on the site.

Although some people have reservations about the quality and accuracy of UGC, it has the advantage of a number of collaborators, which can often help to verify the information that is being published, and edit any inaccuracies.

UGC can also be applied to computer games, where the more specific term ‘player generated content’ tends to be used. In particular, this relates to virtual world modelling.

Related methods include: Collaborative publishing and Virtual world modelling.

tool: FocusOPEN Digital Asset Manager

Open source Digital Asset Management solution designed for medium size preservation, cataloguing, media archiving and batch transcoding.
Methods relating to this toolCategory
AnimationPractice-led research
Cataloguing and indexingData structuring and enhancement
Collaborative publishingData publishing and dissemination
CollatingData analysis
Content analysisData analysis
CurationStrategy and project management
Data miningData analysis
General project managementStrategy and project management
Graphical interaction (synchronous)Communication and collaboration
Graphical renderingData structuring and enhancement
Image feature measurementData analysis
Image manipulationPractice-led research
Image segmentationData analysis
IndexingData analysis
Manual input and transcriptionData capture
OverlayingData analysis
PhotographyPractice-led research
PreservationStrategy and project management
Record linkagesData structuring and enhancement
Resource sharingCommunication and collaboration
Server scriptingData publishing and dissemination
Statistical analysisData analysis
Streaming mediaData publishing and dissemination
Text encoding - presentationalData structuring and enhancement
Text encoding - referentialData structuring and enhancement
Text miningData analysis
Text recognitionData capture
Textual interaction (asynchronous)Communication and collaboration
Textual interaction (synchronous)Communication and collaboration
Use of existing digital dataData capture
User contributed contentData publishing and dissemination
Video and moving image compressionData structuring and enhancement
Video editingPractice-led research
Video post productionPractice-led research
Video-based interaction (asynchronous)Communication and collaboration
Lifecycle stage:

tool: Flickr

Flickr is an online community service that enables registered users to upload, tag, group, comment and rate photographs, artwork, illustrations, screenshots and videos. Images may be shared via Flickr galleries or embedded in external blogs and social media. Hosting approximately 4 billion images, Flickr is also available for unregistered users to search and browse galleries and navigate geospatial maps.
Methods relating to this toolCategory
2d graphic designPractice-led research
2d illustrationPractice-led research
2d scanning and photographyData capture
PhotographyPractice-led research
User contributed contentData publishing and dissemination
Lifecycle stage:
Alternate tool(s):


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