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The medium is the message: cyberspace, community, and music learning in the Irish traditional music virtual community

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This article examines the music teaching and learning in the Irish traditional virtual music community or IrTrad in cyberspace, noting the multiple, fluid and overlapping ways in which the IrTrad community defines itself. For example, YouTube videos give rise to heated discussions in other platforms on all aspects of the videos: quality, performance practices, issues of authenticity, usefulness in learning, repertoire and other areas related to learning the music and the instrument. We frame this discussion with inspiration from Marshall McLuhan's notions about hot and cold media, applying them to survey Internet learning.
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Keywords: IrTrad (Irish traditional virtual music community); McLuhan; adult learners; community music; cyberspace; informal learning contexts; music education; virtual communities

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: University of Windsor, Windsor, ON, Canada. 2: University of Western Ontario, London, ON, Canada.

Publication date: November 26, 2008

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  • The Journal of Music, Technology and Education (JMTE) explores the issues concerning the use of technology in music education. It examines pedagogy at all levels and across genres such as composition, musicology, performance and music production. It is the only journal specifically dedicated to the educational aspects of music technology and the technological aspects of music. Peer-reviewed, with an international editorial board, JMTE aims to draw its contributions from a broad community of educators, researchers and practitioners who are working closely with new technologies in the fields of music education and music technology education.
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