Tuesday, October 31, 2006

November CommQuote

"Language isn't what it used to be. In computer-mediated communication, including cell phone conversations, email, chat room dialogues, blogs, and all documents written on a computer, the language we learned at mother's knee is generated by computer code ... The easy flow of writing and reading human-only languages on computers, increasingly routine for the millions who populate cyberspace, is regularly interrupted by indications that unseen forces are interacting with the language flow, shaping, disrupting, redirecting it. I mistype a word, and my word processing program rearranges the letters. I think I am making the keystroke that will start a new paragraph and instead the previous paragraph disappears. I type a URL into the browser and am taken to a destination I do not expect. These familiar experiences make us aware that our conscious intentions do not entirely control how our language operates. Just as the unconscious surfaces through significant puns, slips, and metonymic splices, so the underlying code surfaces at those moments when the program makes decisions we have not consciously initiated. This phenomenon suggests the following analogy: as the unconscious is to the conscious, so computer code is to language. I will risk pushing the analogy even further; in our computationally intensive culture, code is the unconscious of language."
--N. Katherine Hayles, "Traumas of Code," Critical Inquiry (Autumn, 2006)

Television Station Ownership in the United States

AEJMC's Journalism & Communication Monographs (Volume 8, Number 1, Spring 2006) features a broad analysis by Herbert H. Howard titled: Television Station Ownership in the United States: A Comprehensive Study (1940-2005).

Multiple-station, or group, ownership is a long established characteristic of broadcasting in the United States. It exists whenever a single organization owns more than one station or one medium. Through the efficiencies of operation of multiple outlets, or economies of scale, group media companies usually enjoy financial benefits that are not available to single medium operators. Thus, a long-term trend toward consolidation has prevailed throughout the history of the radio broadcasting industry. Television owners quickly adopted the practice, which has expanded steadily, as regulations have permitted ever since. The three forms of multiple ownership- Group ownership, Duopoly ownership and Cross-media ownership are analyzed in this study. Particularly, this study provides (1) a statistical-historical account of the development of multiple-station ownership in the TV industry from 1940 to 2005; and (2) a historical account and analysis of the government's regulatory actions on media ownership during the same period. This study explores thus, the ownership consolidation and industry regulation that continue to be significant issues for the media industries with on-going implications.

New Media Bibliography from Poynter

The Poynter Institute's latest bibliography in their Online Bibliography Series is on New Media and includes online resources, recent books from 1993-present, and older books pre-1993. It's worth checking out and while you're at it notice other bibliographies in the series such as Youth and Media, Journalism History, Presidential Debates, Broadcast Journalism, and the First Amendment/FOI.

Monday, October 30, 2006

New DVDs

Available to be checked out of the ASC Library:

Tell the Truth and Run: George Seldes and the American Press. A film by Rich Goldsmith, 2006. "A magnetic, entrancing, inspiring film...reveals a history of our times unknown to most Americans. At the same time delightful to watch...I wish every young person in American could see it. --Howard Zinn, historian, Boston University

The Clios 2005. 120s minutes of winners of the gold, silver and bronze Clio Awards, given to creative excellence in advertising and design in a number of fields including TV, Print, Outdoor, Radio, Integrated Campaign, Innovative Media, Design, and the Internet. The Library has the two previous years as well.

And not so new but still in its cellophane wrapper: Coming Attractions: The History of the Movie Trailer. An Andrew J. Kuehn Jr. Foundation Production, 2005. Based on interviews with trailer makers, film editors, copywriters, directors, marketing executives, collectors and scholars of the industry, this documentary examines the historical development, contemporary practice, cultural resonance and economic importance of trailer marketing.

TV series available on DVD at ASC Library are:

All in the Family--Season 1, 2
Bewitched--Season 1
Cops--3 shows
Dallas--Seasons 1-4
Dynasty--Season 1
Friends--Seasons 1-9
Gilligan's Island--Season 3
Homicide: Life on the Street--Seasons 1-4
I Love Lucy--Seasons 1, 5
Law & Order--Seasons 1, 3, 4
Lost in Space--Season 3
The Munsters--Season 2
NYPD Blue--Season 1
Perry Mason--Season 1
Rawhide--Season 1
Real World Paris
Remington Steele--Season 1
Seinfeld--Seasons 1-6
Sex in the City--Seasons 1-6
The Sopranos--Seasons 1-5
West Wing--Seasons 1-5
White Shadow--Season 1

Suggestions for TV series needed for research purposes are welcome. Some of the titles I pick up are in response to course work (requests from professors). In addition, I've added a smattering of titles from different decades in the spirit of general historical sampling.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Jihad database

RAND Voices of Jihad Database describes itself as "a compilation of speeches, interviews, statements, and publications of Jihadist leaders, foot soldiers, and sympathizers. Nearly all content is in English translation, and has been collected from publicly-accessible websites. Content is indexed by date, author, affiliated group, online source, and keyword. Original links are provided, along with excerpts and full-text content when available." The database is indexed by date, author, affiliated group, online source, and keyword.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Special technology theme issue of AMERICAN QUARTERLY

As guest editor Curtis Marez explains, Volume 58, Issue 3 of American Quarterly is devoted to the "role of technology in American culture" and "aims to examine the intersection of the field of American Studies with other fields, in this case technology studies, communication, and the history of technology." Siva Vaidhyanathan's introduction to the issue is titled: "Rewiring the 'Nation': The Place of Technology in American Studies." Other articles include: "The Turn Within: The Irony of Technology in a Globalized World," by Susan Douglas; "Precision Targets: GPS and the Militarization of U.S. Consumer Identity," by Caren Kaplan; "Failing Narratives, Initiating Technologies: Hurricane Katrina and the Production of a Weather Media Event," by Nicole Fleetwood; "The Wire Devils: Pulp Thrillers, the Telephone, and Action at a Distance in the Wiring of a Nation," by Robert MacDougall; "Technology and Below-the-Line Labor in the Copyfight over Intellectual Property," by Andrew Ross, and many more. The journal is available online from the Penn Library website.

Friday, October 13, 2006

China Development Brief

Established in 1996, China Development Brief is an "independent, non-profit publication devoted to strengthening constructive engagement between China and other countries" by offering news on social development in China, reports on environment, and features about civil society in China, all targeted at an international readership of "decision and opinion makers in international development agencies, NGOs, research academies, policy think-tanks and mass media." There is a Media section to the site that explores the development of Chinese media, including new information technologies.

While we're on China, the International Journal of Cultural Studies Volume 9, Number 3, September 2006 is a special themed issue titled: Creative Industries and Innovation in China. Edited by Michael Keane and John Hartley, it addresses cultural and scholarly developments in China which it divides into China's shift towards creative and innovation-based economies, regional aspects of creative industries in China, sectors within creative industries, and specific topics such as copyright and IP law. The issue is an outgrowth/continuation of a previous (2004) special issue of the journal titled: The New Economy, Creativity and Consumption, only with the lens focused solely on China

Fall Reference Booknotes

Handbook of Computer Game Studies, edited by Joost Raessens and Jeffrey Goldstein. (MIT Press, 2005). A comprehensive scholarly treatment of digital games that deals with the history, design, reception, and aesthetics of games along with their social and cultural context. Contributors come from cognitive science and artificial intelligence, developmental, social, and clinical psychology, history, film, theater, and literary studies, cultural studies, and philosophy as well as game design and development. Part I considers the "prehistory" of computer games (including slot machines and pinball machines), the development of computer games themselves, and the future of mobile gaming. The chapters in part II describe game development from the designer's point of view, including the design of play elements, an analysis of screenwriting, and game-based learning. Part III reviews empirical research on the psychological effects of computer games, and includes a discussion of the use of computer games in clinical and educational settings. Part IV considers the aesthetics of games in comparison to film and literature, and part V discusses the effect of computer games on cultural identity, including gender and ethnicity. Finally, part VI looks at the relation of computer games to social behavior, considering, among other matters, the inadequacy of laboratory experiments linking games and aggression and the different modes of participation in computer game culture. (ASC Ref)

The Sage Handbook of Gender and Communication, edited by Bonnie J. Dow and Julia T. Wood (Sage, 2006). Focuses on gender in relation to interpersonal, organizational, mediated, and intercultural/global communication. The volume looks back at the past three decades of gender and communication research and forward toward future perspectives and methodologies. The TOC includes: Gender in Political Communication Research: The Problem with Having No Name, by Vanessa B. Beasley; The Intersections of Race and Gender in Rhetorical Theory and Praxis by Jacqueline Bacon; Feminism and/in Mass Media, by Angharad Valdivia & Sarah Projansky; Race, Gender, and Media Representation, by Dwight Brooks & Lisa Hebert; Critical Studies in Gender/Sexuality and Media, by John M. Sloop; Gendered Violence and Mass Media Representation, by Lisa M. Cuklanz; Gender and New Media, by Mia Consalvo. (VP)

The Encyclopedia of the Documentary Film, edited by Ian Aitken (Routledge, 2006). The first comprehensive reference work on documentary film, this 3-volume set explores the history and scope of the genre. Including over 800 articles from scholars from around the world, the work “discusses individual films and filmmakers including little-known filmmakers from countries such as India, Bosnia, China and others; examines the documentary filmmaking traditions within nations and regions, or within historical periods in places such as Iran, Brazil, Portugal, and Japan; explores themes, issues, and representations in documentary film including human rights, modernism, homosexuality, and World War I, as well as types of documentary film such as newsreels and educational films; elaborates on production companies, organizations, festivals, and institutions such as the American Film Institute, Ceylon Tea Propaganda Board, Hot Docs (Toronto), and the World Union of Documentary; describes styles, techniques, and technical issues such as animation, computer imaging, editing techniques, IMAX, music, and spoken commentary ("Voice of God")” (Routledge website). (VP Ref)

Mass Media Effects Research: Advances Through Meta-Analysis, Edited by Raymond W. Priess, Barbara Mae Gayle, Nancy Burrell, Mike Allen, and Jennings Bryant. (Lawrence Erlbaum, 2007). Bringing together 75 years of research findings, the book is organized by theories, outcomes, and mass media campaigns. Topics include the effects of media violence on aggression (including one piece devoted to video games), sexually explicit media, advertising (on children); media gender stereotyping, television on parasocial relationships, music on social actions and beliefs, television on children’s social interaction, media health campaigns (on children, Magic Johnson’s HIV-Positive announcement) and the impact of the media on political involvement. (ASC reference)

Age of the Storytellers: British Popular Fiction Magazines, 1880-1950, by Mike Ashley (British Library, 2006. A comprehensive reference guide that covers 144 titles, charting their contribution to and influence on popular literature. The cover of each magazine discussed is reproduced, with 72 color plates and 72 b&w images. The collection also considers the significance of these magazines. (ASC Ref)

The Sage Handbook of Political Advertising, edited by Lynda Lee Kaid and Christina Holtz-Bacha. (Sage, 2006). What makes this edited collection of research on political advertising unique is its international perspective. Chapters are arranged in six sections: Part I: An International Context for Political Advertising; Part II: Political Advertising in Commercial Broadcasting Systems; Part III: Political Advertising in Public Television Systems, Part IV: Dual Systems of Public and Commercial Political Advertising, Part V: Political Advertising Developments in Evolving Democracies, Part VI: Comparisons and Conclusions: Television Advertising and Democratic systems Around the World. (ASC Reference)

Fall Booknotes

Storytelling Online: Talking Breast Cancer on the Internet, by Shani Orgad (Peter Lang, 2005). A sociological study of cancer patients’ communication with each other over the Internet and how they configure their experiences into stories. (VP)

Shoot First and Ask Questions Later: Media Coverage of the 2003 Iraq War, by Justin Lewis, Rod Brookes, Nick Mosdell, and Terry Threadgold (Peter Lang, 2006). Includes interviews with embedded and non-embedded journalists, editors, news heads and military planners in the Pentagon and UK Ministry of Defence; a content analysis of broadcast news coverage of the war; and survey and focus group research on how the war was interpreted by viewers/readers. (VP)

The Cell Phone Reader: Essays in Social Transformation, edited by Anandam Kavoori and Noah Arceneaux (Peter Lang, 2006). Comprised of a diverse group of essays on new media cultures, identities, and media-centered relationships as shaped by mobile phone technologies all over the globe. (VP)

Marxism and Communication Studies: The Point Is to Change It, edited by Lee Artz, Steve Macek, and Dana Cloud. (Peter Lang Publishers, 2006 ) Collection features essays by leading scholars and practitioners and provides a much-needed overview and assessment of Marxism's significance to contemporary thinking in communication and media studies.

Jews, News and Crime: Vienna 1890-1914, by Daniel Mark Vyleta (Berghahn Books, 2006). Through the lens of criminality this books provides insight into the spread and nature of anti-Semitism in Austria-Hungary at the turn of the century by investigating the portrayals of Jewish criminals in the press and comparing these to contemporary anti-Semitic discourse.

Magic in the Air: Mobile Communication and the Transformation of Social Life, by James Everett Katz (Rutgers, 2006) Investigates the social aspects of the cell phone’s impact on society and the way social forces affect the use, display, and reconfiguration of the cell phone. Katz also explores the often overlooked psychic and religious uses of the mobile phone. (VP)

Television, Democracy and Elections in Russia, by Sarah Dates (Routledge, 2006). Studies how special interests in television shaped post-Soviet politics in Russia. (VP)

Always Already New: Media, History, and the Data of Culture, by Lisa Giteman (MIT, 2006) From the publisher’s website: “Explores the newness of new media while” at the same time asking “what it means to do media history. Using the examples of early recorded sound and digital networks, Gitelman challenges readers to think about the ways that media work as the simultaneous subjects and instruments of historical inquiry. Presenting original case studies of Edison's first phonographs and the Pentagon's first distributed digital network, the ARPANET, Gitelman points suggestively toward similarities that underlie the cultural definition of records (phonographic and not) at the end of the nineteenth century and the definition of documents (digital and not) at the end of the twentieth.” (VP)

Violent world: TV News Images of Middle Eastern Terror and War, by Nitzan Ben-Shaul (Rowman & Littlefield, 2006).Studies how ideologies are used to frame violence on three TV channels (global CNN, Israeli IBA, and Palestinian PATV). The author draws from critical media theory and approaches out of cinema studies to examine how dominant ideologies are embedded in mainstream TV news. He focuses on the American elites' global ideology and the conflicting dominant national-peripheral ideologies of Israeli-Palestinian elites. (VP)

Media Talk: Conversation Analysis and the Study of Broadcasting, by Ian Hutchby (Open University, 2006) The book is divided into three broad sections: Case Studies Part I: Television Talk and Audience Participation; Audience Participation Television and Public Discourse; The Spectacle of Confrontation; Case Studies Part II: Radio Talk; Language, Interaction and Power on Talk Radio;Distributed Expertise: The Discourse of Advice-Giving Shows; Case Studies Part III: Broadcasters and Politicians; News Interviews: Journalists and Politicians on the Air; Political Rhetoric and Televised Debate.

Girls Make Media, by Mary Celeste Kearney (Routledge, 2006) Examines girls’ role as producers as opposed to passive consumers (VP)

Citizens as Consumers? What the Media Tell Us About Political Participation (Open University, 2006). 'In this superb account of how the British and American news media represent everyday citizens and public opinion, the authors show how coverage of politics and policy debates subtly - even inadvertently - urge people to see themselves as and thus to be politically passive, disengaged and cynical. The book's analysis of how journalists misrepresent, even invent, public opinion is alone worth the price of admission. Written with great verve, passion and unswerving clarity, Citizens or Consumers? promises to become an instant classic in the study of the failings--and the still untapped promise--of the news media to further democracy.' --Susan J. Douglas, University of Michigan (VP)

From Television to the Internet: Postmodern Visions of American Media Culture in the Twentieth Century, by Wiley Lee Umphlett (Farleigh Dickinson, 2006) “In covering the years from the late 1940s through 2000, this book’s sociocultural focus is on the visual impact of momentous developments in postmodern media culture in America, particularly as they have reflected a narrowing of the divide between the elite and mass culture, blurring the lines between fantasy and reality, and the social fragmentation of American life. As such, this book complements and expands on the commentary and conclusions of the author’s initial inquiry into the modern era of media-made culture in The Visual Focus of American Media Culture in the Twentieth Century"—FDUP website (VP)

Reading The L Word: Outing Contemporary Television, edited by Kim Akass (IB Tauris, 2006). Contributors write on how the show deals with topics like third-wave feminism, bisexuality, race, glamour, sex, relationships, music, as well as how the series has been marketed to and received by viewers. Also included are interviews with key contributors to the show itself. (VP)

Virtual Migration: The Programming of Globalization, by A. Aneesh (Duke, 2006). The author examines the emerging “transnational virtual space” where labor and vast quantities of code and data cross national boundaries, but the workers themselves do not. He analyzes the work of computer programmers in India working for the US software industry and argues that the programming code connecting globally dispersed workers through data servers and computer screens is the key organizing structure behind the growing phenomenon of virtual migration. This “rule of code,” he contends, is a crucial and under explored aspect of globalization. A “brilliant examination of how software flows replace people flows. It joins the urgent effort now under way in the social sciences to map a new field of inquiry.”—Saskia Sassen, coeditor of Digital Formations: IT and New Architectures in the Global Realm. (VP)

Wealth of Networks: How social Production Transforms Market and Freedom, by Yochai Benkler (Yale, 2006) Offers social theory on the internet and the networked information economy. "This deeply researched book documents the fundamental changes in the ways in which we produce and share ideas, information, and entertainment. Then, drawing widely on the literatures of philosophy, economics, and political theory, it shows why these changes should be welcomed, not resisted. The trends examined, if allowed to continue, will radically alter our lives-and no other scholar describes them so clearly or champions them more effectively than Benkler."-William W. Fisher III, Hale and Dorr Professor of Intellectual Property Law, Harvard University, Director, Berkman Center for Internet and Society (VP)

Wireless Writing in the Age of Marconi, by Timothy Campbell (University of Minnesota, 2006). This is a complex work which demonstrates that Marconi’s invention of the wireless telegraph was not simply a technological act but also had an impact on poetry and aesthetics and linked the written word to the rise of mass politics. Reading influential works such as F. T. Marinetti’s futurist manifestos, Rudolf Arnheim’s 1936 study Radio, writings by Gabriele D’Annunzio, and Ezra Pound’s Cantos, Campbell reveals how the newness of wireless technology was inscribed in the ways modernist authors engaged with typographical experimentation, apocalyptic tones, and newly minted models for registering voices. Wireless Writing in the Age of Marconi presents an alternative history of modernism that listens as well as looks and bears in mind the altered media environment brought about by the emergence of the wireless. (VP)

Smell Culture Reader, edited by Jim Drobnick (Berg, 2006). TABLE OF CONTENTS: Introduction: Olfactocentrism/ Part I: Odorphobia/ Polish and Deodorize: Paving the City in Late Eighteenth-Century France/ The Sociology of Odors/ Immigrant Lives and the Politics of Olfaction in the Global City/ Offensive Bodies/ Base Notes: Odor, Breath and Moral Contagion in Ilahita/ Olfactory-Triggered Panic Attacks Among Khmer Refugees/ Part II: Toposmia/ Smellscape/ Vagueness Gridlocked: A Map of the Smells of New York/ The Broken Cycle: Smell in a Bangkok Lane/ Fragrant Signals and Festive Spaces in Eurasia/ The Stench of Power/ Environmental Fragrancing/ Part III: Flaireurs/ The New Calculus of Olfactory Pleasure/ Sense and Sensibility/ The Dog Beneath the Skin/ Nostalgia, the Odors of Childhood and Society/ I Know What I Like: Understanding Odor Preferences/ Part IV: Perfume/ Another Memory (Marcel Proust, author)/Perfumed Obsession/ Accords and Discords: Perfume Reviews/ Perfumeros and the Sacred Use of Fragrance in Amazonian Shamanism/ The Dialectic of 'Enscentment': Patrick Sueskind's 'Perfume' as Critical History of Enlightenment Culture/ Part V: Scentsuality: Preface/ The Eros and Thanatos of Scents/ Odor di Femina: Though You May Not See Her, You Can Certainly Smell Her/ The Roots of the Orchis, the Iuli of Chestnuts': The Odor of Male Solitude/Queer Smells: Fragrances of Late Capitalism or Scents of Subversion?/ In Noritoshi Hirakawas Garden of Nirvana/ Part VI: Volatile Art: Preface/ A Wisp of Smoke: Scent and Character in The Tale of Genji/ Eating Nothing: Cooking Aromas in Art and Culture/ Self-Portrait in Scent: Sketch #1/ Digital Scratch and Virtual Sniff: Simulating Scents/ Part VII: Sublime Essences/ The Breath of God: Sacred Histories of Scent/ Bodies, Odors and Perfumes in Arab-Muslim Societies/ Magic, Perfume, Dream . . ./ The Scent of Memory in Hindu South India/Olfactory After-Death Communications. (VP)

Cultural Chaos: Journalism, News and Power in a Globalised World, by Brian McNair (Taylor & Francis, 2006). With examples drawn from media coverage of the war on terror, the 2003 invasion of Iraq, Hurricane Katrina and the London underground bombings, Cultural Chaos explores the changing relationship between journalism and power in an increasingly globalized news culture. (VP)

Burning Books and Leveling Libraries: Extremist Violence and Cultural Destruction, by Rebecca Knuth (Praeger, 2006). Examine the destruction as a tactic of political or ethnic protest. (VP)

Political Blind Spots: Reading the Ideology of Images, by Raphael Sassower (Lexington Books, 2006). TABLE OF CONTENTS: Chapter 1: The Artistic Predicament of Ideological Complicity/I: The Ends of Ideology/ II: The Ideology of the Avant-Garde/ III: The Ultimate Hoax: The Artist as Outsider/ IV: The Ideology of Art, the Art of Ideology/ Illustrations/ Chapter 2: The Visual Framing of Fascism and Democracy/ I: Ideology as Myth-Making/ II: Revolutionary Promises: The Soviet Union and Mexico/ III: The Artistic Faces of Democracy (and Fascism)/ Illustrations/ Chapter 3: The Universal Faces of Art /I: Reductionism in the Name of Universalism/ II: Neurath's Isotypes/ III: The Bauhaus' Dream of Universal Access I/ V: Do National Identities Look Alike?/ Illustrations/ Chapter 4: The Pedagogical Predicament/ I: In Search of a Middle-Ground/ II: Abstract Memories: Recalling Reality/ III: Sanctifying a National Identity: Authenticity/ IV: Pedagogy as Ideology/ V: The Future of Aesthetic Pedagogy. (VP)

Crip Theory: Cultural Signs of Queerness and Disability, by Robert McCruer (New York University, 2006) Drawing on feminist theory, African American and Latino/a cultural theories, composition studies, film and television studies, and theories of globalization and counter-globalization, Crip Theory puts forward readings of the Sharon Kowalski story, the performance art of Bob Flanagan, and the journals of Gary Fisher, as well as critiques of the domesticated queerness and disability marketed by the Millennium March, or Bravo TV's Queer Eye for the Straight Guy. He examines how dominant and marginal bodily and sexual identities are composed, and considers the vibrant ways that disability and queerness unsettle and re-write those identities in order to insist that another world is possible. (VP)

Global Trends and Policies: Information and Communications for Development (World Bank, 2006) A new flagship World Bank publication, this report addresses the critical role being played by information and communication technologies (ICTs) in encouraging social and economic growth in developing countries around the world. This first edition provides a global overview of ICT trends and offers public policy guidelines and imperatives to country leaders, policy makers, academics, and practitioners involved in making ICT an integral part of a country's economy and society. The Report includes an ICT index that benchmarks each country's ICT sector performance (with sub-indices in four areas: access, quality, affordability, and institutional efficiency and sustainability) and ICT applications. The last section of the report contains a one-page ICT at a Glance statistics summary of 40 indicators for each of over 150 countries. The summary illustrates the status of each country in terms of its ICT development relative to other countries in the region and income group, as well as its growth trend over the past five years. (VP)

Realer Than Reel: Global Directions in documentary, by David Hogarth (University of Texas, 2006) An overview of developments and innovations in documentary film worldwide.

Sociology of the Body: Mapping the Abstraction of Embodiment, by Kate Cregan (Sage, 2006) The book is divided into three sections intriguingly titled: Part I: Object—The Regulated Body; Part II: Abject—The bounded body; and Part III: Subject: The Body of Difference. “Through a provocative analysis, this book contextualizes, explicates and critically analyses the work of those key theorists and texts that have been most influential in refocusing our gaze on human embodiment. Upon this foundation, the author builds her own distinctive theoretical framework towards the analysis of embodiment. This is a valuable addition to the field of body studies” - Chris Shilling, University of Portsmouth (VP)

The Power to Persuade: FDR, the Newsmagazine, and Going to War, 1939-1941, by Michael Carew (University Press, 2005) Unanimous support for entering World War II may not have been entirely the result of the bombing of Pearl Harbor. According to Carew, four major news magazines: Life, Look, Newsweek and Time were an even more unifying force to the American war effort as the Roosevelt administration persuaded the news magazines to carry story after story about the rising threat of the Axis powers and the moral responsibility of US foreign policy. (VP)

Shaping American Telecommunications: A History of Technology, Policy, and Economics, by Christopher Sterling, Phyllis W. Bernt, and Martin B.H. Weiss (Lawrence Erlbaum, 2006). Examining the technical, regulatory, and economic forces that have shaped the development of American telecommunications services, this volume is both an introduction to the basic technical, economic, and regulatory principles underlying telecommunications, and a detailed account of major events that have marked development of the sector in the United States. Beginning with the introduction of the telegraph and continuing through to current developments in wireless and online services, the authors explain each stage of telecommunications development, examining the interplay among technical innovation, policy decisions, and regulatory developments. (VP)

From Rural Village to Global Village: Telecommunications for Development in the Information Age, by Heather E. Hudson (Lawrence Erlbaum, 2006) Examines the role of information and communication technologies (ICTs) on both the macro level–societal, socio-economic, and governmental–and sector level–education, health, agriculture, entrepreneurship–emphasizing rural and developing regions. Author Heather E. Hudson examines the potential impact of ICTs by reviewing the existing research and adding her own findings from extensive fieldwork in ICT planning and evaluation. The volume includes case studies demonstrating innovative applications of ICTs plus chapters on evaluation strategies and appropriate technologies. She also analyzes the policy issues that must be addressed to facilitate affordable ICT access in rural and developing regions. This discussion relates to the larger “digital divide” issue, and the impact that access to communication technology–or the lack of it–has on communities and societies. (VP)

The Nightly News Nightmare: Television Coverage of U.S. Presidential Elections, 1988-2004, by Stephen J. Farnsworth and S. Robert Lichter. (Rowan and Littlefield, 2006). This is the second edition with the 2004 election added into the thesis, Farnsworth and Lichter show how network news coverage of presidential elections has continued to decline. Through extensive analysis of news content, the authors compare what the candidates said with what the networks say they said. By the title of the book, they make no secret of their judgment. (VP)

Friday, October 06, 2006

State of Internet-Related Research in Communication, Marketing, and Advertising, 1994-2003

The Journal of Advertising (Volume 35, Number 3, Fall 2006) contains a review of literature article titled: State of Internet-Related Research in Communication, Marketing, and Advertising, 1994-2003, by Chang-Hoan Cho and HyoungKoo Khang.

Authors' Abstract:
This study analyzes trends, patterns, and rigorousness in research studies about the Internet through a content analysis of published Internet-related papers in 15 major journals in communications, marketing, and advertising between 1994 and 2003. Five hundred thirty seven papers of 4,050 total papers in the 15 journals (13.3%) were about the Internet. The results of this study demonstrate a definite pattern of increase in Internet research, the existence of a wide dispersion of individual and institutional contributors, a need for a more explicit theoretical framework, and a need for better methodological rigors in Internet research. In terms of topical coverage, this study concludes that Internet research deals with diverse research topics, but has not quite reached the last phase of Wimmer and Dominick's (2002) media developmental model (i.e., how we can improve the Internet).

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Introducing The Center for Public Integrity's Well Connected

The Center for Public Integrity has put together a useful set of resources on the website“Well Connected: Tracking the Broadcast, Cable & Telecommunications Industry” which describes itself as "an ongoing investigation…of the businesses that control the nation’s information pipelines and of their government overseers." The project is funded by the Ford Foundation, with partial funding from the Open Society Institute.

Three Research Tools on the righthand site of the home page are worth checking out. As described in ResourceShelf:

Click on the In Your State link. On the righthand side of the next page is a dropdown menu inside a U.S. map. Choose your state and click “Go” to get a report. Which telecom companies are pulling the strings in your state government? Find out which telecommunications companies are spending the most on lobbying and campaign contributions. Learn about your public utility boards, where they are located and how to file a complaint. Also, view the personal financial disclosure statements of board members and learn how much they earn. Within this information you’ll find a link to a “Public Service Commission Disclosure Ranking Report Card,” which evaluates financial disclosure requirements for public service commission public utility board members in each state.

Use the MediaTracker search box to find out who owns the media outlets in your local area. Enter a zip code, a call sign, or a city/state combination. You’ll get detailed charts of all the radio and TV stations and major newspapers in your area. A multi-faceted search box at the top allows you to fine-tune your results — e.g., by geographic radius. Note that you can get detailed profiles of the owner companies by using the dropdown menu in the search box or clicking on the live links in the “owner” column at the far right of each chart

The InfluenceTracker — which covers broadcast radio/TV, cable/satellite TV and telephone companies — provides information on:
Campaign Contributions (from 1998 through September 2004).
Junkets — e.g., “industry-funded trips…by members of the House and Senate commerce committees and their staffs between January of 2000 and March of 2004.”
Lobbying — “amounts that companies, associations and unions spend on lobbying Congress and federal agencies as well as amounts paid to consultants hired to affect policy.”
Revolving Door — “The most comprehensive outline to date of the back-and-forth movement of people from government to industry.”

You can also read about the methodology used to gather and process all this information into “a 51,870-record database consisting of every radio and television station and cable television system in the United States.”

New Media Department at MoMA

This would make a great field trip!

From the Arts/Culture Desk of The New York Times, October 3, 2006:

The Museum of Modern Art announced yesterday that it had created a new curatorial department to focus exclusively on the growing number of contemporary artworks that use sound and moving images in gallery installations. The media department, once part of the department of film and media, will deal with works that use a wide range of modern technology, from video and digital imagery to Internet-based art and sound-only pieces, said Klaus Biesenbach, who was named chief curator of the new department. Mr. Biesenbach, right, who has been a MoMA curator since 2004 and the chief curator of P.S. 1, the museum's Queens affiliate, since 2002, said that works relying on media techniques and ideas of conveying motion and time had become much more prominent over the last two decades at international art fairs and exhibitions. ''And it's even more visible now,'' he said. ''I think artistic practice is evolving, and so museums are evolving as well.'' The creation of the new department brings the number of curatorial departments at the museum to seven. The other six are architecture and design, drawings, film, painting and sculpture, photography, and prints and illustrated books.

October CommQuote

"The therapists miss the eccentricity of the self to itself and the public character of signs. They imagine the self as a holder of private experiential property and language as the courier of its messages. Their cure is as bad as the disease..... Sending clear messages might not make for better relations; we might like each other less the more we understood about one another. The transmission of signals is an inadequate metaphor for the interpretation of signs...
Instead, the most wonderful thing about our contact with each other is its free dissemination, not its anguished communion. The ultimate futility of our attempts to "communicate" is not lamentable; it is a handsome condition. The notion of communication needs to be liberated from its earnestness and spiritualism, its demand for precision and agreement...The requirement of interpersonal mimesis can be despotic. Ralph Waldo Emerson and Willliam James struck the right note: acknowledging the splendid otherness of all creatures that share our world without bemoaning our impotence to tap their interiority. The task is to recognize the creature's otherness, not to make it over in one's own likeness and image. The ideal of communication, as Adorno said, would be a condition in which the only thing that survives the disgraceful fact of our mutual difference is the delight that difference makes possible."

--John Durham Peters, Speaking Into the Air: A History of the Idea of Communication

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