Volume 1, Issue 1 (2013)

doi: 10.12924/mac2013.01010001 | Volume 1 (2013) | Issue 1
Bradley S. Greenberg 1, * , Hannes Haas 2 and Elisabeth Klaus 3
1 College of Communication Arts & Sciences, Michigan State University, USA
2 Department of Communication, University of Vienna, Austria
3 Department of Communication, University of Salzburg, Austria
* Corresponding author
Publication Date: 5 August 2013
Abstract: Indeed, there are some three dozen English-language journals now that deal with one or another or multiple aspects of the field of media and (mass) communication. Would another journal not be redundant? We think not. Media and Communication, henceforth shortened to MaC, will possess a specific combination of attributes that are not replicated elsewhere and together result in the unique position of the journal.

pp. 2-14
doi: 10.12924/mac2013.01010002 | Volume 1 (2013) | Issue 1
José van Dijck 1, * and Thomas Poell 1
1 Department of Mediastudies, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands
* Corresponding author
Publication Date: 12 August 2013
Abstract: Over the past decade, social media platforms have penetrated deeply into the mech­anics of everyday life, affecting people's informal interactions, as well as institutional structures and professional routines. Far from being neutral platforms for everyone, social media have changed the conditions and rules of social interaction. In this article, we examine the intricate dynamic between social media platforms, mass media, users, and social institutions by calling attention to social media logic—the norms, strategies, mechanisms, and economies—underpin­ning its dynamics. This logic will be considered in light of what has been identified as mass me­dia logic, which has helped spread the media's powerful discourse outside its institutional boundaries. Theorizing social media logic, we identify four grounding principles—programmabil­ity, popularity, connectivity, and datafication—and argue that these principles become increas­ingly entangled with mass media logic. The logic of social media, rooted in these grounding principles and strategies, is gradually invading all areas of public life. Besides print news and broadcasting, it also affects law and order, social activism, politics, and so forth. Therefore, its sustaining logic and widespread dissemination deserve to be scrutinized in detail in order to better understand its impact in various domains. Concentrating on the tactics and strategies at work in social media logic, we reassess the constellation of power relationships in which social practices unfold, raising questions such as: How does social media logic modify or enhance ex­isting mass media logic? And how is this new media logic exported beyond the boundaries of (social or mass) media proper? The underlying principles, tactics, and strategies may be relat­ively simple to identify, but it is much harder to map the complex connections between plat­forms that distribute this logic: users that employ them, technologies that drive them, economic structures that scaffold them, and institutional bodies that incorporate them.

doi: 10.12924/mac2013.01010015 | Volume 1 (2013) | Issue 1
Jacob Groshek 1, * and Megan Clough Groshek 2
1 College of Communication, Boston University, USA
2 Megan Groshek is a staff member at the Office of Academic Services, Brandeis University.
* Corresponding author
Publication Date: 23 August 2013
Abstract: In the contemporary converged media environment, agenda setting is being transformed by the dramatic growth of audiences that are simultaneously media users and producers. The study reported here addresses related gaps in the literature by first comparing the topical agendas of two leading traditional media outlets (New York Times and CNN) with the most frequently shared stories and trending topics on two widely popular Social Networking Sites (Facebook and Twitter). Time-series analyses of the most prominent topics identify the extent to which traditional media sets the agenda for social media as well as reciprocal agenda-setting effects of social media topics entering traditional media agendas. In addition, this study examines social intermedia agenda setting topically and across time within social networking sites, and in so doing, adds a vital understanding of where traditional media, online uses, and social media content intersect around instances of focusing events, particularly elections. Findings identify core differences between certain traditional and social media agendas, but also within social media agendas that extend from uses examined here. Additional results further suggest important topical and event-oriented limitations upon the predictive capacit of social networking sites to shape traditional media agendas over time.

doi: 10.12924/mac2014.01010028 | Volume 1 (2013) | Issue 1
Drew P. Cingel 1, * , Alexis R. Lauricella 1 , Ellen Wartella 1 and Annie Conway 2
1 Center on Media and Human Development, Northwestern University, USA
2 Chicago Architecture Foundation, USA
* Corresponding author
Publication Date: 23 January 2014
Abstract: Given adolescents' heavy social media use, this study examined a number of predictors of adolescent social media use, as well as predictors of online communication practices. Using data collected from a national sample of 467 adolescents between the ages of 13 and 17, results indicate that demographics, technology access, and technology ownership are related to social media use and communication practices. Specifically, females log onto and use more constructive communication practices on Facebook compared to males. Additionally, adolescents who own smartphones engage in more constructive online communication practices than those who share regular cell phones or those who do not have access to a cell phone. Overall, results imply that ownership of mobile technologies, such as smartphones and iPads, may be more predictive of social networking site use and online communication practices than general ownership of technology.

doi: 10.12924/mac2014.01010039 | Volume 1 (2013) | Issue 1
Frederik Lesage 1, * and Robert A. Hackett 1
1 School of Communication, Simon Fraser University, 8888 University Drive, V5A 1S6 Burnaby, Canada
* Corresponding author
Publication Date: 30 January 2014
Abstract: A number of recent high profile news events have emphasised the importance of data as a journalistic resource. But with no definitive definition for what constitutes data in journalism, it is difficult to determine what the implications of collecting, analysing, and disseminating data are for journalism, particularly in terms of objectivity in journalism. Drawing selectively from theories of mediation and research in journalism studies we critically examine how data is incorporated into journalistic practice. In the first half of the paper, we argue that data's value for journalism is constructed through mediatic dimensions that unevenly evoke different socio-technical contexts including scientific research and computing. We develop three key dimensions related to data's mediality within journalism: the problem of scale, transparency work, and the provision of access to data as 'openness'. Having developed this first approach, we turn to a journalism studies perspective of journalism's longstanding "regime of objectivity", a regime that encompasses interacting news production practices, epistemological assumptions, and institutional arrangements, in order to consider how data is incorporated into journalism's own established procedures for producing objectivity. At first sight, working with data promises to challenge the regime, in part by taking a more conventionalist or interpretivist epistemological position with regard to the representation of truth. However, we argue that how journalists and other actors choose to work with data may in some ways deepen the regime's epistemological stance. We conclude by outlining a set of questions for future research into the relationship between data, objectivity and journalism.

doi: 10.12924/mac2014.01010051 | Volume 1 (2013) | Issue 1
Gary Evans
Department of Communication, University of Ottawa, Canada
Publication Date: 17 February 2014
Abstract: This manuscript investigates the facts of publication of the images of the Nanking Atrocity (December 1937–January 1938) in LIFE and LOOK magazines, two widely read United States publications, as well as the Nanking atrocity film clips that circulated to millions more in American and Canadian newsreels some years later. The publishers of these images were continuing the art of manipulation of public opinion through multimodal visual media, aiming them especially at the less educated mass public. The text attempts to describe these brutal images in their historical context. Viewing and understanding the underlying racial context and emotive impact of these images may be useful adjuncts to future students of World War II. If it is difficult to assert how much these severe images changed public opinion, one can appreciate how the emerging visual culture was transforming the way that modern societies communicate with and direct their citizens' thoughts.

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