Fall 2019, Vol. 31, No. 1
Explorations in Media Ecology in 2020.This article is a slightly revised version of a keynote address delivered during the 20th Annual Media Ecology Association Convention hosted by the University of Toronto on June 27-30, 2019. An expanded version will be published in
Tom Cooper responds to Lance Strate's keynote address delivered during the 20th Annual Media Ecology Association Convention, 2019.
Barry Brummett argues that our experience of both events and unfocused passages are socially constructed and organized—that dimensions of boundedness and power are foundational for those constructions—and that the ways we organize and construct events and the unstructured passages have a great deal to do with human communication. He concludes that the history of rhetorical theory shows a marked preference for understanding rhetoric as event, which should change as technology and culture change.
Media addiction is a growing worry among parents, practitioners, and even children. Yet there is no such thing as media addiction according to the American Medical Association. Nonetheless, research is gaining on the issue, as evidenced in this special section on media addiction, guest edited by Aaron R. Boyson.
On average we look at our phones 52 times a day and spend an average of 3 hours, 10 minutes on our mobile devices. Is this media addiction, and is our fast-paced culture to blame? This essay argues that in questioning our media use, we should examine our fundamental experience of time.
Is consumption of real-time content while flaunting fandom on Twitter the new norm? And what are the effects when these behaviors become compulsive?Fans have unprecedented access to their favorite actors as a direct result of Twitter and can interact with like-minded individuals to talk about live events unfolding within their favorite shows.
This commentary introduces the possibility that media devices supply gratifications to children not previously specified in media research. Within built environments normed for adults, sustained media use might help children maintain sensory regulation, while taking away screens without supplying alternative means of sensory regulation could make family media conflict worse.
University students enrolled in a media class submitted letters they would write to a young child with advice about using media technology. Their instructor, Dr. Boyson, took sentences from those letters and rearranged them into a new composition. The new letter represents a class-wide remorse that relationships with technology had not met expectations.
PM Narendra Modi, a Bollywood-produced biopic of the sitting prime minister of India slated to premiere on April 5, 2019 just days before the six-week voting period began. Is this entertainment or propaganda that could possibly alter elections? Do governments have the duty to protect their citizens from potential misinformation during elections or is it the duty of citizens to judge fact and fiction for themselves? Is it ethical—in the name of electoral fairness—to curb Bollywood’s political and artistic speech?This case study examines the film
Indo-Pakistani conflict and how both national governments, news media in both countries, and social media accounts operated by citizens and trolls alike engaged in widespread misinformation. And yet this “fake news” may arguably be advantageous in preventing the two nations from going to all-out war. Creating such “information bubbles” means that “both sides can declare victory to their people and go home.” And so the question becomes: is it ever ethically acceptable to spread misinformation?This case study examines the 2019