Wednesday, August 22, 2007

ICA Fellows Book Award Winner: The Control Revolution

As you may have already heard in San Francisco, James R. Beniger's The Control Revolution: Technological and Economic Origins of the Information Society (Harvard University Press, 1986) won the International Communication Association Fellows Book Award which recognizes books that "have made a substantial contribution to the scholarship of the communication field, as well as the broader rubric of the social sciences, and have stood some test of time." (August 2007, ICA Newsletter).

You can check out this cross-disciplinary synthesis on the origins and meaning of the Information Society from either the Annenberg or Van Pelt Library or access the online version.

The ICA award has not been long in existence. Here is the list so far:

2007 - James R Beniger, U of Southern California
The Control Revolution: Technological and Economic Origins of the Information Society

Published in 1986 by Harvard U Press

2004 - Klaus Krippendorff, U of Pennsylvania
Content Analysis: An Introduction to its Methodology

Published in 2004 by Sage

2002 - James Bradac (Deceased), U of California - Santa Barbara
Charles R. Berger, U of California - Davis
Language and Social Knowledge: Uncertainty in Interpersonal Relations

Published in 2002 by E. Arnold

2000 - Everett M. Rogers (Deceased), U of New Mexico
Diffusion of Innovations

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Monday, August 20, 2007

Early American Newspapers and other documents from Readex

Readex, a division of Newsbank, provides a suite of historical resources under its Archive Americana umbrella which includes newspapers, books, pamphlets, broadsides, government documents and ephemera printed in America over three centuries. Several hundred thousand fully searchable issues from more than 200 significant 18th- and 19th- century newspapers from all 50 present states are offered. Based primarily on the holdings of the American Antiquarian Society (AAS), which houses a vast collection of American newspapers through 1876, Early American Newspapers, Series II, 1758-1900, Penn's most recent acquisition, also includes titles from the acclaimed newspaper collections of the Library of Congress, Wisconsin Historical Society and more than 90 other institutions.

Available sections of the Archive Americana collection are:

America's Historical Newspapers
Searchable American newspapers enable users to explore America's past. Available: Early American Newspapers, Series 1, 1690-1876 and Series 2, 1758-1900

Early American Imprints, Series I: Evans, 1639-1800
Books, pamphlets, broadsides and other imprints listed in the renowned bibliography by Charles Evans

Early American Imprints, Series II: Shaw-Shoemaker, 1801-1819
Books, pamphlets, broadsides and other imprints listed in the distinguished bibliography by Ralph R. Shaw and Richard H. Shoemaker

These databases, which can be cross-searched, are available at the Penn Libraries website.

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Paley Center for Media

The Museum of Television and Radio, formerly the Museum of Broadcasting has morphed once again. Since March of this year it is now the Paley Center for Media, named after late CBS founder William S. Paley. Dropping the "Museum" part of its name is telling. The Center, which has two sites--New York and Los Angeles--will still serve as a repository of television and radio programming but sees itself as foremost a place for industry leaders and the public to engage in dialogue about media and its role in society. The number of panels and interview sessions will double and new media executives and creators are being brought in, in addition to those from traditional media.

The Center is currently in the process of digitizing its international collection of more than 140,000 programs covering almost 100 years of television and radio history, including news, public affairs programs and documentaries, performing arts programs, children's programming, sports, comedy and variety shows, and commercial advertising. Programming from some seventy countries is represented in the collection. The collection is not comprehensive, of course. The site points out that it is a curated collection, i.e. "programs have been selected on the basis of artistic achievement, social impact, or historic significance." Both the New York and Los Angeles sites house the same archive which at this point does not have a corresponding online catalog which would be most helpful especially for folks in the middle of the country for whom a trip to either coast is required.

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Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Murdoch's U.S. track record

In light of Rupert Murdoch's purchase of the Wall Street Journal, check out the Project for Excellence in Journalism's Publisher Murdoch's U.S. Track Record, A PEJ Backgrounder, a brief August 2007 report by Dante Chinni, assisted by Jessica Goldings.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Aspen Institute Reports

It's good to keep an eye out for Aspen Institute reports from its Communication & Society Program section. The program convenes leaders in the areas of information and communication for roundtable discussions to explore the political, economic, and societal impact of communications and information infrastructures. It also promotes research and distributes conference reports. Recent (2007) reports include: Next-Generation Media: The Global Shift; The Mobile Generation: Global Transformations at the Cellular Level; The Future of Video: New Approaches to Communications Regulation; Unmassing America: Ethnic Media and the New Advertising Marketplace. These reports are for sale at a reasonable price at the site but I discovered they are actually free on the open web. Just google a chunk of the title and they will come up in a full pdf.

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Wednesday, August 01, 2007

August CommQuote

Bob Garfield of On the Media interviewed Vinicius Galvao, a reporter for Folha de Sao Paulo, Brazil's largest newspaper, about the city's recent ban on outdoor advertising.

"Bob Garfield: I've seen photos of the city, and it's amazing to see this sprawling metropolis completely devoid of signage, completely devoid of logos and bright lights and so forth. What did Sao Paulo look like up until the ban took place?

Vinicius Galvao: Sao Paulo's a very vertical city. That makes it very frenetic. You couldn't even realize the architecture of the old buildings, because all the buildings, all the houses were just covered with billboards and logos and propaganda. And there was no criteria. And now it's amazing. They uncovered a lot of problems the city had that we never realized. For example, there are some favelas, which are the shantytowns. I wrote a big story in my newspaper today that in a lot of parts of the city we never realized there was a big shantytown. People were shocked because they never saw it before, just because there were a lot of billboards covering the area....It's weird, because you get lost...you don't have any references anymore...My reference was a big Panasonic billboard. But now my reference is art deco building that was covered..."
--excerted from Adbusters (September/October, 2007)

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