Our Sporting Future (21-23 March, 2007)


Next month, I jet across to Brisbane to give a keynote by the title:  New Media Futures: The Challenge from Posthumanity.

The emerging technologies of new media are changing the way people work, enjoy leisure and communicate. This paper will explore the challenge raised from the convergence of technology platforms and scope the scene for what lies ahead for sports involvement. The paper identifies two crucial trends in development, the process towards ‘immersion’ (bringing audiences closer to the arena) and ‘abstraction’ (bringing athletes closer to simulated arenas) and discusses the collapse of bodies and technology as distinct categories, which raises prospects of the posthuman performer in competition. The discussion considers what tomorrow’s people will expect from the mediatisation of sports and explores some of the implications this has for the organisation of society and the role of technology within it. While dominant cultural narratives portray such futures as inhuman or dehuman, I argue that these transformations offer rich variation to contemporary life by appealing to imaginative ways of communication and embodiment.

I will also take part in a debate about the role of science in the contribution of winning medals.  It looks to be an exciting event and it's nearly 7 years since I've been to Australia. I just wish I was there for longer!