Tag: media

  • The vested interests of the media in Trump

    From Jill Abramson’s Merchants of Truth pg 386: The “Trump bump” was mostly responsible for its strong financial reports following the election as the paid digital readership began to explode. By the end of the second quarter there were 600,000 new subscriptions, bringing the total number of digital subscribers above two million. In 2017 paid […]

  • The acceleration of journalism

    I’d tended to think of the acceleration of journalism as being a matter of fewer staff producing more copy. But this passage from Jill Abramson’s Merchants of Truth suggests the changing demands of editing are a factor as well. From pg 416: Before she left for ProPublica, Marilyn Thompson, the investigative reporter and proponent of […]

  • Viral populism: what happens when isomorphism through algorithm hits politics?

    Viral populism: what happens when isomorphism through algorithm hits politics?

    This is an admirably prescient post from 2014 by BuzzFeed editor Ben Smith about the viral populism which social media has facilitated. It brings a new dimension to political life which eludes the familiar expectations of pundits: At some point in the next two years, the pollsters and ad makers who steer American presidential campaigns […]

  • Becoming ourselves through the media

    Becoming ourselves through the media

    From John Thompson’s Media & Modernity pg 41-42: In interpreting symbolic forms, individuals incorporate them into their own understanding of themselves and others. They use them as a vehicle for reflection and self-reflection, as a basis for thinking about themselves, about others and about the world to which they belong. I shall use the term […]

  • What is an institution?

    What is an institution?

    From John Thompson’s Media & Modernity pg 13: In some cases these positions acquire a certain stability by being institutionalized–that is, by becoming part of a relatively stable cluster of rules, resources and social relations. Institutions can be viewed as determinate sets of rules, resources and relations which have some degree of durability in time […]

  • Can social media firms remain popular while being perceived as untrustworthy?

    Can social media firms remain popular while being perceived as untrustworthy?

    In the last few months, I’ve been thinking a lot about the popularity of social media firms amidst mounting scandal. It has often seemed that there’s a new common sense opening up in which these firms are seen as fundamentally untrustworthy, built around a business model which means the scandals they generate are a feature rather […]

  • A really interesting cfp on media and time

    This looks excellent! CALL FOR PROPOSALS Special Issue of Convergence: The International Journal of Research into New Media Technologies Back to the Future: Telling and Taming Anticipatory Media Visions and Technologies Guest editors: Christian Pentzold (University of Bremen, Germany), Anne Kaun (Södertörn University, Sweden), and Christine Lohmeier (University of Salzburg, Austria) Digital media, networked services, […]

  • The global fourth estate

    In his recently released book Collusion, Luke Harding briefly discusses the media cooperation taking place behind the scenes, as media organisations grappled with a rapidly changing landscape. On loc 898 he writes: At the Guardian we were pursuing leads from both sides of the Atlantic. Among them, how UK spy agencies had first picked up suspicious […]

  • Brand Corbyn and Brand Trump

    What do Jeremy Corbyn and Donald Trump have in common? On the face of it, two people could not be more dissimilar but I’m curious about what might be their analogous position in relation to mainstream political culture. After all, in a sense Corbyn came from outside party politics, albeit not in the way Trump did, being […]

  • Against the ‘political rulebook’

    Much of the reaction to Labour’s election success last week has been framed in terms of their ‘rewriting the rules’. One particularly explicit example of this can be seen in an article by Jonathan Freedland, an enthusiastic critic of Corbyn, pontificating that Corbyn took “the traditional political rulebook” and “put it through the shedder”. What […]

  • Public intellectuals as guides to the political flux, Or, “who can tell us what the fuck is going on?”

    In the last couple of days, I’ve been reading The Candidate by Alex Nunns. It’s a detailed and insightful account of Corbyn’s ascent to the leadership of the Labour party and the conditions which made this possible. After the election, it can also be read as as an analysis of broader conditions which might facilitate […]

  • The causal powers of media

    In The Mediated Construction of Social Reality, Nick Couldry and Andreas Hepp take issue with the primacy of face-to-face interaction that has so often been assumed within social thought. Our embodied interaction is taken to be primary, often assumed to be unmediated, with the mediation of interaction through technology seen as additional to it. From loc […]

  • Rant-driven journalism 

    An interesting insight from This Town, by Mark Leibovich, pg 278-279. It would presumably be near impossible for a website like Politico to maintain its level of output without resorting to processes like this: Sure enough, a few days later, Politico’s founding editor, John Harris, went on a new enterprise called “Politico TV” and revealed […]

  • when people falsely impute research to you

    This is just weird. I can only assume that the EastLovesWest company hires underpaid freelancers to produce content for their blog, who have in turn typed keywords into Google and written an article without ever clicking on any of the links: It seems likely to me that this will become a more common occurrence with […]

  • Are academics very well-educated journalists who write badly but will work for free?

    A few years ago I wrote a short article about the relationship between academic blogging and journalism which received a pretty positive reaction online. My suggestion was that academic blogging increasingly constitutes a ‘third space’ between the academy and journalism which facilitates translation between the two institutional spheres. It becomes easier for journalists to find […]

  • How to be an academic and deal with stupid & hostile interviewers

  • Call for Papers: Media Sociology Preconference, ASA 2014

    Call for Papers: Media Sociology Preconference, ASA 2014 Venue: Mills College (Oakland, CA) Date: August 15, 2014 We invite submissions for a second preconference on media sociology to be held at Mills College (Oakland, CA) on Friday, August 15, 2014. (This is one day before the start of the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association in […]

  • The Slow Death of Press Freedom?

    I find it more than a little disturbing that these two explicit threats to press freedom have been issued by the government in the space of 24 hours. Note that Cameron’s statement about the Snowden leaks comes at the same time as prominent NSA loyalists are breaking ranks in America to call for a ‘total […]