New Media Technologies: Communication Theories COM 300 – Week 2 Evolution of Digital Communication Kathy E. Gill 12 Jan 2009
More “New Media” Discussion
New media (recapped)
Some definitions focus on computer technology, others focus on interactivity
Audiences not heterogeneous
Control shifts from communicator to audience
A process in which participants create and share information with one another in order to reach mutual understanding (Rogers, 1995).
What is it?
d. mediated . (adj) acting or brought about through an intervening agent; (v) to be in the middle
Why would we study it?
We live in an ever-increasingly mediated world
Part one : medium
A go-between/intermediary in the communication binding the sender and receive
Considers symbolic and cognitive theories of the psychology of representation
Considers theories of meaning in signs and symbols (semiotics)
Part two : mass media (1/2)
Mass communication characteristics:
Directed towards a large, heterogeneous audience
Messages are transmitted publicly, are transient in nature, and are timed to reach all simultaneously
Communicator works for an organization
Charles Wright, 1959, from Communication Theories: Origins, Methods and Uses in the Mass Media, 1988, p7
Part two : mass media (2/2)
Mass media communication traditionally encompasses these channels
Newspapers, magazines (print technologies)
TV, radio (electronic technologies)
Note: “news” v “ads”
The physical/technical transmission as well as any device needed for encoding/decoding
May encompass advertising channels (direct mail) or news (TV)
One-to-many, one-way channel is typical
So, what is new?
Your thoughts, based on readings?
Three BIG things:
Concept of scarcity
Bits can be shared; atoms cannot
How does this relate to Bush’s musings about Memex?
Does it make it easier or harder to “remediate”? Why?
Constraint of time
Time-shifting (Tivo, podcasting, 24x7 tech support via the web … what else?)
How do you think that the speed in which we now communicate (e-mail, mobile phones, etc.) has affected our communication?
Constraint of space
Geographical barriers: Gone!
Internet technology lets us “space shift” like we “time shift” – (almost) seamlessly
There are environmental benefits from the advancement of technology, specifically from computers. If in the future, all of academia (from grade school & beyond) required only computer-based work, what would your response be to the change? Why?
What do they have in common?
Computer Mediated Communication (1/2)
Desktop computers used as tools to influence human cognition and convey messages among people (focuses on the technology, older definition)
Any form of communication between two or more individuals who interact and/or influence each other using social software on separate computers linked by a network (focuses on the people)
CMC software has two categories: asynchronous and synchronous (Smith, 1994).