About the Project

This research study examines the people, practices, and social relations that determine the success of content creation enterprises on Web 2.0 platforms. We are studying bloggers, podcasters, Instragrammers, YouTubers, and other content creators as media entrepreneurs in a new and growing part of the culture industry. We want to know how they get ideas, create content, connect with audiences, and sustain themselves as ongoing enterprises.

Information for Potential Subjects

Have we contacted you about participating in our study?  Have questions?

Begin by reviewing our Informed Consent package for our study’s subjects. You can download a copy here.  You will be asked to review and agree to this document before participating in the study.

Some frequently asked questions:

  • What questions will you ask? We expect to ask open-ended questions about how you produce content, organize your content production enterprise, develop and connect with audiences, cooperate with other creators, and the financial considerations involved in content creation.
  • How long will the interview take? Between 30 and 90 minutes.
  • How will I be interviewed? If possible, we will interview you in person.  Alternatively, we can interview you via the telephone or Internet.
  • Can I withdraw from the study after giving initial consent? Yes, you can withdraw without consequences at any time.  We will destroy recordings of our interview upon your request.
  • Will my answers be recorded? We would prefer to record the interview, because it allows us to re-listen to our discussion and catch what we might have missed when talking with you.
  • Are my answers confidential? Yes.  Audio recordings will be stored on a secure medium provided by the City University of New York.  Our team is prohibited from distributing our recordings with you without getting your prior consent.  You will not be identified as having been part of the study without giving your consent.  We will erase audio copies of your interview upon your request.

If you still have questions, please contact Prof. Joseph Cohen at joseph.cohen@qc.cuny.edu.

Team Members

Associate Professor of Sociology, City University of New York - Queens College

The project is led by Joseph Nathan Cohen, Associate Professor of Sociology at the City University of New York, Queens College. Professor Cohen specializes in economic sociology and the sociology of culture. He currently runs an academic podcasting enterprise called Sociocast, and co-hosts The Annex Sociology Podcast.

Dana Weinberg is a Full Professor of Sociology and Chair of the Department of Sociology at the City University of New York, Queens College.  Professor Weinberg is an expert on the independent publishing industry.

Visiting Assistant Professor of Sociology, City University of New York - Queens College

Ryan Sperry is a Visiting Assistant Professor of Sociology at the City University of New York, Queens College.  Professor Sperry is an expert on high technology enterprises, organizations, and entrepreneurship.

Nga Than is a Ph.D student in the Sociology program at City University of New York – The Graduate Center. Her research interests are in entrepreneurship, work, immigration, and consumption. She is in the process of writing a dissertation proposal, focusing on how technological advancement changes work relations in the contemporary workplace. Nga was born and raised in Vietnam.

Joseph van der Naald

Doctoral Student, City University of New York - Graduate Center

Joseph van der Naald is a Ph.D. student in the program in sociology at the Graduate Center. He specializes in political economy and labor sociology and his research interests are focused on unionization in white-collar work.