Thursday, July 10, 2003
There's an interesting article in the current issue of the Columbia Journalism Review, "Rethinking Objectivity" that ties in with a lot of the issues we've been exploring regarding media coverage, "bias," reliance on sources, etc. If this topic has been of interest to you, you may want to check it out.
Midterm Exam: Reminder
The midterm is this coming Monday, July 14. Don't forget to bring a blue book and a pink, Parscore scantron with you to class.
Tuesday, July 08, 2003
Gaming as a social activity; and hey, women game too!
There's a new study out from the Pew foundation about gaming and college students. Findings include understanding computer gaming as a social activity, connected to building friendships, etc. This doesn't surprise me (my experience with gaming-- especially when I was in college-- was always explicitly social-- I played computer games with people.
There was an interesting finding on the gender front: more women than men reported playing online or computer games! However, the women were more likely to be playing things like solitaire, etc., rather than the sorts of things that usually pop to my mind when I think of gaming (RPGs, action, strategy, etc.) which makes this finding less surprisng than it intially seemed.
Pew Internet & American Life Project.
Monday, July 07, 2003
Clear Channel and NPR?
There was an interesting article in the L.A. Times this morning about KUSC (USC's public radio station, an NPR affiliate) outsourcing its efforts to get corporate sponsors (advertisers on public radio). And who are they outsourcing to? Clear Channel Communications! I'm often pretty cynical about the current state of public radio (particularly NPR) but this surprised even me! calendarlive.com: KUSC sees no evil in alliance
FCC media ownership ruling report
The official version of the new media ownership rules from the 6/2 FCC deregulation are now available online at the FCC website. I haven't had time to do much more than glance at them yet-- but the justifications used for this ruling are a bit nauseating.
A generation ago, only science fiction writers dreamed of satellite-delivered television, cable was little more than a means of delivering broadcast signals to remote locations, and the seeds of the Internet were just being planted in a Department of Defense project. Today, hundreds of channels of video programming are available in every market in the country and, via the Internet, Americans can access virtually any information, anywhere, on any topic.
I hate to see two things I love-- science fiction and the Internet-- being used to justify this sort of action. The Internet has enabled many amazing things. It does not, however, mean that we have no need to worry about the access to broadcasting. And if we're going to be drawing some sort of parallels between the current mediascape and sf predictions, I think it's more from the dystopic tradition that we should be drawing.
On a related note, Bob McChesney's group atmediareform.net is encouraging everyone to call thier congresspeople to repeal this FCC ruling. Click here to find out if your representatives have gotten on board yet.