Week 14

When using new technology it is essential to understand how the media works for the message to be sent correctly. When movies first came out, the language of cinema had to be learned by both audiences and film makers; events that happen in a film can jump location and time but audiences generally understand the relation between the two events even though it is not how vision works in the real world.

Similarly, new technological media must be learned to be understood. New tech media is moving extremely fast and possibly faster than audiences are able to keep up with. Twitter is generally understood by the public at this point but it took a long time. The trend of Facebook’s impact on the current election cycle, though, was not fully understood at the time, and still really isn’t. The presence social bubbles  created by trending topics tailored to interests had a huge impact, often because people weren’t aware that the press they were seeing wasn’t the only press that existed.

This too can be true of so called “fake news”. Older generations aren’t as familiar with how internet sites that publish these sites work i.e. that they can write things that are completely false without ever noting it. In the time of print journalism, if there was a headline it was generally true. This eventually evolved too, however with the creation of tabloids that generated news that was completely false. It was only with time that people learned this and which sources to avoid. Because of this, we have to learn how to “hear” and “see” through these new mediums to understand what experience is meant to be had, and what message is meant to be sent.



  1. I liked that you tied in the idea of social bubbles into your discussion of new media. We were just talking about this concept in one of my other classes, and how catered content created by algorithms isolated users from others who share different views. I think this is a great example of how new technology can influence politics in a changing aesthetic experience that may be more interesting for the individual, but less informative in a greater context.


  2. It’s interesting that you talk about social bubbles and fake news in this instance. This is what I’m writing my final paper on, and I see it as a totally different classification of new technological media, but I really enjoyed how you linked it with this weeks readings. It really shows you how the media you process impacts your social circle, with therefore impacts your political views.


  3. I think you are completely right in saying that it takes time to develop a general critical awareness with regards to any new media. I do wonder if it is only older generations that have trouble seeing the difference between “real” and “fake” news. Just as it takes time for society to develop critical faculties, the same is true of individuals. We learn to mistrust the information that we receive, it is not a given. There is a reason for the saying “young and dumb”. That children’s naivety is often mentioned (usually in praising and fostering creativity), is another example. You could flip the whole scenario and say that a generation born into and fostered by “fake” news, is likely not gonna care about the ultimate truth-value of information. I think we are all to some extent gullible, and we have to constantly work to stay critical and question our sources.


  4. I like the point about fake news. It’s also interesting to see that there are not only tabloids that focus on “what sells” but there are also purely fake news sites that are up for the purpose of creating news that may or may not be true, simply for the purpose of entertainment


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