The Useful Television Standing Seminar (organized by Anne-Katrin Weber, University of Lausanne, and Markus Stauff, University of Amsterdam) aims to facilitate the exchange between scholars interested in television’s application as a useful tool, rather than a mass medium.
The examples range from military and i dustrial applications of television technology to its operational use in medicine, science, or sports. We partly build on older debates in film studies (e.g. non-theatrical cinema; useful film) and want to bring television into this debate. Looking at useful television requires to broaden and to complicate our understanding of what media do and how they do it; additionally, it contributes to an alternative genealogy of “digital media”. The seminar organizes two or three meetings per semester for which we invite guest speakers, discuss the participants’ work in process or new and old publications that seem of relevance.