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Can you feel it? The information behaviour of creative DJs

Keith Munro (Department of Computer and Information Sciences, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, UK)
Ian Ruthven (Department of Computer and Information Sciences, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, UK)
Perla Innocenti (Department of Computer and Information Sciences, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, UK)

Journal of Documentation

ISSN: 0022-0418

Article publication date: 5 December 2022

30

Abstract

Purpose

This paper investigates the information behaviour of creative DJs, a group previously not considered from the perspective of information studies. The practice of DJing is a musically creative process, where a performance can draw on a vast range of music to create a unique listening and dancing experience. The authors study what are the information behaviour processes involved in creative DJing and what roles embodied information play in DJing practice.

Design/methodology/approach

From a set of semi-structured interviews with 12 experienced DJs in Scotland, UK, that were subjected to inductive thematic analysis, the authors present a model of how DJs undergo the process of planning, performing and evaluating a DJ performance.

Findings

From this study, a model of creative DJs’ information behaviour is presented. This three-stage model describes the information behaviours and critical factors that influence DJs’ planning, decision-making and verification during the pre-performance, performance and post-performance stages, with particular emphasis on DJs’ performances as a rich site of embodied information interactions.

Originality/value

This research provides insight into a new activity in information behaviour, particularly in the use of embodied information, and presents a model for the information behaviour of creative DJs. This opens the way for future studies to consider minorities within the activity, the audience as opposed to the performer, as well as other creative activities where physicality and performance are central.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors are grateful to all the participants for sharing knowledge and providing insight on the world of creative DJing. The authors would also like to acknowledge Nicolle Glen, Sinead Hallinan, Kerry Kurtz and Colin Paton for their contributions to the research undertaken during an MSc project on this topic area, which informed elements of this study.

Citation

Munro, K., Ruthven, I. and Innocenti, P. (2022), "Can you feel it? The information behaviour of creative DJs", Journal of Documentation, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/JD-05-2022-0106

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2022, Emerald Publishing Limited

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