Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Central European Journal of Communication

The Annenberg Library now subscribes to the Central European Journal of Communication, the official Journal of the Polish Communication Association. The first issue (2008) was the "result of the International Media and Communication Conference 'Comparing Media Systems: West Meets East' (Wrocław, Kliczków Castle, 23-25 April, 2007)" from which ten articles were selected for the maiden issue. The second issue (2009), focused on the "Impact of European Integration and EU Entry on the Media and Media Policy in 'New Europe.'" "Political Campaign Communication in Different Media Systems"(2010), is the subject of the most recent issue which the library should be receiving any day now.

Note this journal is not available electronically. That will probably change at some point but for now it's a paper only title. It's also currently not indexed in Communication Abstracts or Communication and Mass Media Complete so you'll have to go out of your way a little to keep track of it (check ASC shelves or website for information on current and forthcoming issues).

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Open Access Journals in Media and Communications

Here's a site to bookmark. The International Association for Media and Communication Research has compiled a list of open access journals in the field (with a brief description of each title and links to sites). Listing over 60 titles, IAMCR plans to maintain and grow this list with the help of its members and visitors to the site. They welcome suggestions of journals to add, reports of broken links and the like. As a before-summer project, I'll make sure all these titles are on the Penn Libraries Communication e-journal list--so we're all one happy family, open access e-journals sitting right amidst our subscription e-journals.

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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Copyright and Creativity in Communication Research

Annenberg alumnus Bill Herman ('09, now teaching in the Film and Media Department at Hunter College), drafted the report of the Ad Hoc Committee on Fair Use and Academic Freedom of the International Communication Association titled: Clipping Our Own Wings: Copyright and Creativity in Communication Research. Way to go Committee, and especially our Bill!


Communication scholars need access to copyrighted material, need to make unlicensed uses of them in order to do their research, and often—especially within the United States—have the legal right to do so. But all too often they find themselves thwarted.

A survey of communication scholars’ practices, conducted by the Ad Hoc Committee on Fair Use and Academic Freedom in the International Communication Association (ICA), reveals that copyright ignorance and misunderstanding hamper distribution of finished work, derail work in progress, and most seriously, lead communication researchers simply to avoid certain kinds of research altogether.

Nearly half the respondents express a lack of confidence about their copyright knowledge in relation to their research. Nearly a third avoided research subjects or questions and a full fifth abandoned research already under way because of copyright concerns. In addition, many ICA members have faced resistance from publishers, editors, and university administrators when seeking to include copyrighted works in their research. Scholars are sometimes forced to seek copyright holders’ permission to discuss or criticize copyrighted works. Such permission seeking puts copyright holders in a position to exercise veto power over the publication of research, especially research that deals with contemporary or popular media.

These results demonstrate that scholars in communication frequently encounter confusion, fear, and frustration around the unlicensed use of copyrighted material. These problems, driven largely by misinformation and gatekeeper conservatism, inhibit researchers’ ability both to conduct rigorous analyses and to develop creative methodologies for the digital age.

Communication scholars can benefit by developing best practices standards for the most ample and flexible copyright exemption permitting unlicensed use of copyrighted materials: fair use. While non-U.S. members will not be able to apply this doctrine directly to work done outside the United States, having this interpretation established for U.S. scholars will expand opportunities within a large area of communication research, encourage international scholars to explore their own nations’ copyright exemptions, and provide an important benchmark for non-U.S. scholars looking for models as copyright reform proceeds.

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Monday, April 26, 2010

Daedalus Issue on Future of News

Daedalus, the Journal of the American Academy of the Arts and Sciences, flies under the radar when we think of Communications journals but I like to keep an eye on it and this latest issue devoted to the future of news is case in point for doing so. Still another reason is you'll find Professor Kathleen Hall Jamison and PhD candidate Jeffery A. Gottfried in this issue imparting lessons for the news industry from the 2008 Presidential campaign. See the Penn Libraries homepage for e-access to the journal.

Daedalus (Vol. 139, issue 2: April 1, 2010):

Political observatories, databases & news in the emerging ecology of public information, by Michael Schudson
What is happening to news?, by Jack Fuller
The Internet & the future of news, by Paul Sagan and Tom Leighton
The Carnegie-Knight Initiative on the Future of Journalism Education: improving how journalists are educated and how their audiences are informed, by Susan King
Does science fiction-yes, science fiction-suggest futures for news?, by Loren Ghiglione
Are there lessons for the future of news from the 2008 presidential campaign?, by Kathleen Hall Jamieson and Jeffrey A. Gottfried
New economic models for U. S. journalism, by Robert H. Giles
Sustaining quality journalism, by Jill Abramson
The future of investigative journalism, by Brant Houston
The future of science news, by Donald Kennedy
International reporting in the age of participatory media, by Ethan Zuckerman
The case for wisdom journalism-and for journalists surrendering the pursuit of news, by Mitchell Stephens
News and the news media in the digital age: implications for democracy, by Herbert J. Gans
Journalism ethics amid structural change, by Jane B. Singer

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Friday, April 16, 2010

Communication Research Methods II

Communication Research Methods II: A Sourcebook, by Rebecca B. Rubin, Alan M. Rubin, Elizabeth E. Graham, Elizabeth M. Perse, and David R. Seibold (Routledge, 2009) expands on the measures included in the original 1994 volume. The authors claim that the measure they feature are:
"the best of the best from the early 1990s through today. They are models for future scale development as well as tools for the trade, and they constitute the main tools that researchers can use for self-administered measurement of people's attitudes, conceptions of themselves, and perceptions of others. The focus is on up-to-date measures and the most recent scales and indexes used to assess communication variables." --Publisher's website
Part I offers overviews of measurement research in various sub-divisions of the field: family communication, organizational and group, health, instructional, cross-cultural and intercultural, interpersonal and mass; each chapter includes a solid bibliography.

Part II contains profiles of selected communication measures, 57 to be exact. And Part III profiles "imported" measures (from other fields.)

This title (and it's 1994 predecessor), is on the shelf in ASC Reference, P 91.3 C623.

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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Death of the News (MIT World Panel)

Death of the News?

March 2, 2010

While not dead, the U.S. news industry is severely depleted and likely to diminish further, these panelists agree. But they also believe that something vibrant and enduring might emerge from this period of digital disruption.


Jason Pontin

Editor in Chief and Publisher, Technology Review and TechnologyReview.com

Susan Glasser

Executive Editor, Foreign Policy

Maria Balinska

Ruth Cowan Nash Nieman Fellow, Harvard University

Event Host

Center for International Studies

Center for International Studies
I've pointed out MIT World's section on Media a while back. Time for another shout out for its interesting speakers and topics on all aspect of the media. This video is available for viewing at the site along with 78 others.

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Monday, April 12, 2010

The Scope of FBIS and BBC Open-Source Media Coverage, 1979–2008

An excellent piece of content analysis on the Foreign Broadcast Information Service (FBIS) and the Summary of World Broadcasts (SWB), by Kalev Leetaru (Cline Center for Democracy) from latest issue of Studies in Intelligence (Volume 54, Number 1, March 2010).
The Scope of FBIS and BBC Open Source Media Coverage, 1979–2008

Kalev Leetaru

For nearly 70 years, the Foreign Broadcast Information Service (FBIS) monitored the world’s airwaves and other news outlets, transcribing and translating selected contents into English and in the process creating a multi-million page historical archive of the global news media. Yet, FBIS material has not been widely utilized in the academic content analysis community, perhaps because relatively little is known about the scope of the content that is digitally available to researchers in this field. This article, researched and written by a specialist in the field, contains a brief overview of the service — reestablished as the Open Source Center in 2004 — and a statistical examination of the unclassified FBIS material produced from July 1993 through July 2004 — a period during which FBIS produced and distributed CDs of its selected material. Examined are language preferences, distribution of monitored sources, and topical and geographic emphases. The author examines the output of a similar service provided by the British Broadcasting Service (BBC), known as the Summary of World Broadcasts (SWB). Its digital files permit the tracing of coverage trends from January 1979 through December 2008 and invite comparison with FBIS efforts.

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Friday, April 09, 2010

Encyclopedia of Communication Theory Online

Just added to the ASC Penn Library Homepage, is Sage Publication's Encyclopedia of Communication Theory, the online version of the 2009 publication featuring summaries of key theories and traditions in the field. The volumes of over 300 entries, written by nearly 200 contributors from ten countries, including Australia, Canada, China, Denmark, India, Italy, Japan, Spain, the United Kingdom and the US, are easily searchable. Say you want to get up to speed on where Paul Lazarsfield fits into the field; a quick search on his last name pulls up 10 entries on broadcasting theories, public opinion theories, Two-step and Multi-step flow, as well as political communication, journalism, audience, grounded and mass media theories and lastly, spiral models of media effects!

Keep your eye on the the Other E-Resources section of the ASC page as new resources are added to be right there at your fingertips.

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Monday, April 05, 2010

April CommQuote

Notice in the second paragraph how Brecht's vision for radio better matches the internet, more specifically web 2.0 technology, which he could never have imagined in 1932, but sorta does.

The Radio as an Apparatus
of Communication
by Bertolt Brecht; July 1932

In our society one can invent and perfect discoveries that still have to conquer their market and justify their existence; in other words discoveries that have not been called for. Thus there was a moment when technology was advanced enough to produce the radio and society was not yet advanced enough to accept it. The radio was then in its first phase of being a substitute: a substitute for theatre, opera, concerts, lectures, cafe music, local newspapers and so forth. This was the patient's period of halcyon youth. I am not sure if it is finished yet, but if so then this stripling who needed no certificate of competence to be born will have to start looking retrospectively for an object in life. Just as a man will begin asking at a certain age, when his first innocence has been lost, what he is supposed to be doing in the world.
...As for the radio's object, I don't think it can consist simply in prettifying public life. Nor is radio in my view an adequate means of bringing back cosiness to the home and making family life bearable again. But quite apart from the dubiousness of its functions, radio is one-sided when it should be two-. It is purely an apparatus for distribution, for mere sharing out. So here is a positive suggestion: change this apparatus over from distribution to communication. The radio would be the finest possible communication apparatus in public life, a vast network of pipes. That is to say, it would be if it knew how to receive as well as to transmit, how to let the listener speak as well as hear, how to bring him into a relationship instead of isolating him. On this principle the radio should step out of the supply business and organize its listeners as suppliers. Any attempt by the radio to give a truly public character to public occasions is a step in the right direction.
...Whatever the radio sets out to do it must strive to combat that lack of consequences which makes such asses of almost all our public institutions. We have a literature without consequences, which not only itself sets out to lead nowhere, but does all it can to neutralize its readers by depicting each object and situation stripped of the consequences to which they lead. We have educational establishments without consequences, working frantically to hand on an education that leads nowhere and has come from nothing.
...The slightest advance in this direction is bound to succeed far more spectacularly than any performance of a culinary kind. As for the technique that needs to be developed for all such operations, it must follow the prime objective of turning the audience not only into pupils but into teachers. It is the radio's formal task to give these educational operations an interesting turn, i.e. to ensure that these interests interest people. Such an attempt by the radio to put its instruction into an artistic form would link up with the efforts of modern artists to give art an instructive character. As an example or model of the exercises possible along these lines let me repeat the explanation of Der Flug der Lindberghs that I gave at the Baden-Baden music festival of 1929.


MICHIKO KAKUTANI on Mash-up Culture

An excellent review article on the mash-up culture of the web (with mention of at least a dozen related books) appeared in the March 21 Sunday New York Times.

Texts Without Context
Published: March 21, 2010
How the Internet and mash-up culture change everything we know about reading.

These were some of the books were mentioned in the article:

By David Shields
219 pages. Alfred A. Knopf. $24.95.

A Manifesto
By Jaron Lanier
209 pages. Alfred A. Knopf. $24.95.

By Nicholas Carr
288 pages. W. W. Norton & Company. $26.95. (Scheduled for release in June.)

By Farhad Manjoo
250 pages. John Wiley & Sons. $25.95.

By Susan Jacoby
357 pages. Vintage Books. $15.95.

By Cass R. Sunstein
273 pages. Oxford University Press. $15.95.

By Cass R. Sunstein
199 pages. Oxford University Press. $21.95.

By Andrew Keen
256 pages. Doubleday. $14.00.

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Thursday, April 01, 2010

New e-Journals in Communication

Penn is a subscriber of three new ICI Global journals in the field. They are:

In additional, from MIT we now subscribe to:

International Journal of Learning and Media

The International Journal of Learning and Media (IJLM) is a ground breaking online-only journal devoted to the examination of the changing relationships between learning and media across a wide range of forms and settings. While retaining the rigorous peer review process of a traditional academic journal, IJLM will also provide opportunities for more topical and polemical writing, for visual and multi-media presentations, and for online dialogues.

These titles are all available from the ASC Library homepage.

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