Dr Martin Zeilinger

Senior Lecturer, Media Studies

Faculty:Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences

School:Cambridge School of Creative Industries

Location: Cambridge

Areas of Expertise: Media , Digital media

Courses taught: Media Studies, Film Studies and Media Studies

Martin is a researcher and practitioner interested in critical, experimental uses of new technologies by media artists and activists, particularly in relation to issues of cultural ownership, appropriation-based art practices, creative coding, and digital games/storytelling.





Martin is a Media Studies lecturer with wide-ranging research interests, an experimental media practitioner, and a curator. Before joining Anglia Ruskin University, he taught at the University of Toronto, York University, and the Ontario College of Art & Design. He is also co-director of the Toronto-based Vector Game Art & New Media Festival.

Research interests

  • Appropriation-based forms of creative expression / digital and proto-digital remix culture
  • Theories of creativity, originality, and authorship in digital contexts
  • Politics and aesthetics of cultural ownership, immaterial labour, and informational capital
  • Artistic/activist resistance against intellectual property regimes
  • Moral economies of digital culture
  • Creative coding and live coding
  • New media art
  • Digital games and non-linear narrative forms
  • Hacker and DIY culture
  • Dystopian narrative in popular culture

Areas of research supervision

  • Digital media theory & aesthetics
  • Intellectual property and digital culture
  • Cultural theory and political economy
  • Game studies / digital storytelling
  • Creative coding
  • New media art


Martin’s teaching currently focuses on Media Studies, Media Theory, and Digital Culture, with modules in preparation in the areas of Game Studies, Law and Digital Culture, and Creative Coding.


  • SSHRC Banting Postdoctoral Fellow, Grad. Program in Communication and Culture, York University (2011-2013)
  • PhD in Comparative Literature, University of Toronto, Dissertation “Art and Politics of Appropriation” (2009)
  • MA in Comparative Literature, University of Toronto (2004)

Memberships, editorial boards

Research grants, consultancy, knowledge exchange

  • Akademie Solitude Fellowship, Stuttgart/Germany. 2015-2017. Project title: “Audiovisual Algorithmic Authorship.”
  • Research-Creation Residency, Signal Culture Experimental Media Art Center, Owego/NY, April/May 2015.
  • Judicial Expert Consultant, United Airlines VS Jeremy Cooperstock, Quebec Appeals Court (ongoing).
  • Judicial Expert Consultant, Don Henley et al VS Chuck DeVore et al, U.S. District Court of Central California, 2010.

Selected recent publications

Zeilinger, M. 2017. Métic Action in Digital Culture. Platform Journal 8(1), pp.8-23.

Zeilinger, M. 2017. Everything You’ve Always Wanted to Know about the Blockchain* (*But Were Afraid to Ask Mel Ramsden). In Ruth Catlow et al, eds. Artists Rethinking the Blockchain, London: Torque & Furtherfield (distributed by Liverpool Univ. Press), pp.287-295.

Zeilinger, M. 2016. Digital Art as 'Monetised Graphics:' Enforcing Intellectual Property on the Blockchain. Philosophy and Technology Journal. rdcu.be/mYC4, doi: 10.1007/s13347-016-0243-1 (Open Access).

Coombe, R.J., Wershler, D., and Zeilinger, M. eds, 2014. Dynamic Fair Dealing. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

Zeilinger, M. 2014. Live Coding the Law: Code, Copyright, & Improvisation. Computer Music Journal 38(1), pp.77-89.

Zeilinger, M. 2014. Sampling as Analysis, Sampling as Symptom: Found Footage and Repetition in Martin Arnold’s Alone. Life Wastes Andy Hardy. In: D. Laderman and L. Westrup, eds., Sampling Media. New York: Oxford University Press, pp.155-167.

Dobbin, L. and Zeilinger, M. 2014. Treasuring Intellectual Property: the Pirate Party Movement and Cultural Ownership. In M. David and D. Halbert, eds., The IP Handbook. New York: Sage Publications, pp.370-386.

Moura, H., Sternberg, R., Cunha, R., and Zeilinger, M., eds. 2014, Interactive Narratives, New Media & Social Engagement (Electronic Conference Proceedings). Toronto, Oct 2014, ISBN: 9780993952005.

Zeilinger, M. and Coombe, R.J. 2013. Three Peters and an Obsession with Pierre: Intellectual Property in John Greyson’s Un©ut. In B. Longfellow, S. MacKenzie, and T. Waugh, eds., The Perils of Pedagogy. McGill-Queens University Press, pp.438-449.

Zeilinger, M. 2012. Chiptuning Intellectual Property: Electronic Music Between Creative Commons and Moral Economy. International Association for the Study of Popular Music Journal 3(1), pp. 19-34.

Zeilinger, M. 2012. Surveillance Culture and Appropriation: CCTV as Found in Footage in Manu Luksch's Faceless. In R. Doyle, A. Lippert ,and E. Smith, eds., Eyes Everywhere: The Global Growth of Camera Surveillance. London: Routledge, pp.262-273.

Recent presentations and conferences

“The Arts Make Us Richer (TM): Media Art and Crypto-Currencies.” Media Art History Emergent Researcher Symposium, Montreal, November 4, 2015.

“The Gallery at Play – Histories & Politics of Exhibiting Games and Game Art.” International Symposium for the Electronic Arts (ISEA), co-organized with Skot Deeming, Vancouver, August 2015.

“Live Coding in Sonic Pi,” performance & talk, Conference for Computation, Communication, Aesthetics & X (xCoAx), Glasgow, June 2015.

“Ownage.” ‘Comparative Literature and Intellectual Property’ panel (Organizers: Joseph Slaughter, Columbia U., and Paul Saint-Amour, U Penn), American Comparative Literature Association (ACLA), Seattle, March 27, 2015.

Machinima Auteurs and the Corporate Appropriation of Fan Labour.” ‘Authorship and Authority in Media Industries’ panel, Society for Cinema and Media Studies (SCMS), Montreal, March 25, 2015.

“Live Coding as a Speculative Paradigm of Creative Expression.” Tuning Speculation II, York University, Toronto, November 7, 2014.

“‘Put That Cookie Down!’: Film Trailers, Fan Labour, and Issues of Cultural Ownership.” Keynote Lecture, Annual Symposium, International Summer Institute on the Cultural Study of Law, University of Osnabrück, Germany, August 15, 2014.

Media experience

Exploring the Art of the Interface” (Dan Epstein, Dorkshelf), April 1, 2015.

Vector Festival 2015 – Curatorial Interview” (Rich Oglesby, Prosthetic Knowledge), Feb 18, 2015.

To Utility and Beyond” (Amy Pagnotta for InnerSpace, Space Television), Feb 18, 2015.