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Communications & Media
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What Makes New Media “New”? (Essay Sample)


This paper asks you to consider the historical positioning of new media and communication history. We like to think of new media as an entirely new and unprecedented phenomenon (it’s in the name of the term itself!). Thinking about the intersection between technology, culture and society, reflect on the following: What makes new media “new”? What is genuinely novel about new media and Internet culture? On the other hand, what makes new media “old”? Given what you now know about the history of communication, what are some things that have not changed throughout time? What parallels can you make between the Internet and older forms of communication? And, also from a historical perspective, what do you think are some key implications of the way we, as a society, imagine(d) the relationship between communication technologies and culture? Requirements: Length: 5-6 pages (excluding bibliography), double-spaced APA style While I am interested in opinions on these issues, your views must be supported with perspectives from five of the following sources. You MUST cite from five of the following readings. Additional outside sources are also welcome. 1. Winston, Brian. “How Are Media Born?” Questioning the Media: A Critical Introduction. Eds. John Downing, Ali Mohammadi, & Annabelle Sreberny- Mohammadi. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage, 1990. 55-72. 2. Durham Peters, John. “History as a Communication Problem.” Explorations in Communication and History. Ed. Barbie Zelizer. Thousand Oaks: Sage, 2008. 19-34. 3. Tom Standage, “Chapter 2: The Roman Media.” From Writing on the Wall: Social Media — The First 2,000 Years. NY: Bloomsbury, 2013. 21-47. 4. Marvin, Carolyn. “Chapter 2 - Community and Class Order: Progress Close to Home.” From When Old Technologies Were New: Thinking About Electric Communication in the Late Nineteenth Century. NY: Oxford UP, 1988. 63-108. 5. Douglas, Susan. “The Invention of the Audience.” From Listening in: Radio and the American Imagination. Minneapolis: Univ of Minnesota Press, 2004. 124-160. 6. Andrejevic, Mark. “When Everyone Has Their Own Reality Show.” A Companion to Reality Television. Ed Laurie Ouellette. NY: Wiley-Blackwell, 2013. 40-55. 7. How the Web was Won: An Oral History of the Internet. Vanity Fair (July 2008). Read online at The readings are attached as files. *Please let me know if you have any questions


What Makes New Media “New”?  

The act of transferring and transmitting information from one person to another by voice, writing, or other kinds of communication is known as communication (Fatimayin, 2018). By bridging the gap between people and the public, communication enables us to share our thoughts on pressing societal issues and perspectives on potential solutions to environmental problems. Since it was first realized that communication could be done through various media at an unknown time, many media have been employed extensively. To promote and improve human contact through communication, successive mediums have been developed. Virtual reality environments, human-computer interfaces, websites, and even interactive computer installations are among the biggest and most significant new media in the information and technology sphere. This paper addresses the historical positioning of new media and communication history, the cultural ramifications, and the new and old values of new media.
According to Downing et al. (1995), “all technological communication innovation can be thought of as a series of events taking place in the realm of technology, but influenced by and reacting to events taking place (a) in the realm of pure science and (b) in society in general.” New media, such as computerized and internet-based media creations, resulted from this. All of the fundamental novel elements and characteristics of communication technology are included in new media. The distinction between new and old media may be summed up in four principles. Modularity, automation, variety, and transcoding set new media apart from traditional media. New media can be presented numerically by utilizing numerical variability aspects. Specific aspects, such as interactive and occasionally simulated material, only apply to new media. Virtual, hypertextual, digital, and networked describe new media.
What Makes New Media “New”?
Compared to old media methods, new media delivers significant advancements in communication technology with a wide range of distinctive and novel characteristics. As an illustration, new media is a communication medium that has emerged in recent decades and offers better and better interactive capabilities. Global engagement is ensured through the adaptability, flexibility, and ease of use of new media. The Internet is a new form of media that allows for worldwide connectivity and direct engagement while catering to a smaller audience. It also incorporates the essential components of technical breakthroughs, such as digitalism, networks, and virtually mediated simulations.
With one device, such as a laptop, being able to access various media kinds, new media is more flexible, simpler to target, easier to access, and can reach everyone, anywhere. The "New" media are always evolving, so what is new now could not be new tomorrow. This is as a result of the rapid and vigorous technological improvement. In my opinion, the capacity to target a particular, smaller group of individuals with material tailored to the reader is the most significant "new" aspect of new media (). For instance, in the early 1990s, reality television became a unique genre. In most competition-based reality programs, candidates are gradually eliminated by a jury, the audience, or even by each other. Andrejevic (2014) states that “reality television illustrates and reflects back to us emerging ways of thinking about monitoring and surveillance.” This contrasts with earlier forms of media like television, radio, and billboards.
The rising use of digital media is altering how individuals connect and collaborate in the workplace, civil society, and other areas of society. Both individuals and society see the positive effects of this increased use. Unprecedented social contact, communication, and community building are made possible beyond time, space, and social context limits. According to Zelizer (2008), “history is a problem of communication over time and space, and every medium is biased in what it transmits, records, and makes accessible to discovery.” It is empowering people and accelerating the democratization of information. People in underprivileged neighborhoods and regions have improved prospects because of new teaching and working techniques. Regardless of culture, new media has changed people, companies, and organizations. New media depend on music, international communication, social change, and cultural implications. The development of new media has boosted online and international communication. Through blogs, websites, videos, and images it has aided people in expressing themselves.
It is believed that the globalization of the world will increase as new technologies mature.
More than only the expansion of activity on a global scale define globalization. No matter how far apart people are from one another, globalization makes it possible for the globe to be connected.” Communication theory is haunted by the dream of complete mind-to-mind sharing, just as history is haunted by the dream of perfect immersion of the present in the past.” (Zelizer, 2008) This brings about globalization, the development of activity outside the limits of individual nation-states. With the help of modern communication, globalization has shortened the distance between individuals worldwide. This progress will soon herald the death of distance. The link between physical location and social context is fundamentally broken by new media, significantly reducing the importance of physical location for human social interactions. The fact that many individuals from China and South Africa, in contrast to many Americans, think that new media has had a diminishing and bad influence on their life makes it important to remember that new media also come with various obstacles.

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