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During the s, the spread of mass media was accompanied by the rise of fascism. To many observers at the time, the former helped explain the latter.
By consolidating control over news and other information, radio networks, movie studios, and publishing houses enabled a single voice to address and even command the multitudes. The very structure of mass media seemed to reflect and reinforce the political structure of the authoritarian state.
The ideal infused the counterculture of the s. By the end of the s, the ideal had been embraced by Steve Jobs and other technologists, who celebrated the personal computer as an anti-authoritarian tool of self-actualization.
In the early years of this century, as the internet subsumed traditional media, the ideal became a pillar of Silicon Valley ideology. Then came the US presidential campaign.
The democratization of media produced not harmony and pluralism but fractiousness and propaganda, and the political energies it unleashed felt more autocratic than democratic.
Turner is blunt in his own assessment: On the contrary, the technologies of decentralized communication can be coupled very tightly to the charismatic, personality-centered modes of authoritarianism long associated with mass media and mass society.
Around the wreckage of techno-progressive orthodoxy orbit the 27 articles in Trump and the Media. The writers, mainly communication and journalism scholars from American and British universities, are homogeneous in their politics — none is in danger of being mistaken for a Trump voter — but heterogeneous in their views on the state and fate of journalism.
One contentious question is whether social media in general and Twitter in particular actually changed the outcome of the vote. The one group that exhibited a large and possibly decisive shift from the Democratic to the Republican candidate were white voters without college degrees.
Yet these voters, surveys reveal, are also the least likely to spend a lot of time online or to be active on social media. What Hampton overlooks are the indirect effects of social media, particularly its influence on press coverage and public attention.
The novelty and frequent abrasiveness of the tweets — they broke all the rules of decorum for presidential campaigns — mesmerized the chattering class throughout the primaries and the general election campaign, fueling a frenzy of retweets, replies, and hashtags.
An analysis of Twitter mentions and news stories, Cowls and Schroeder report, reveals a clear correlation: Usher believes that the flaws in computational journalism can be remedied through a more open and honest accounting of its assumptions and limitations.
Anderson, of the University of Leeds, takes a darker view. The flood dissolved the already blurred boundaries between news and entertainment, truth and fantasy, public servant and charlatan. Through its many voices, Trump and the Media makes a convincing case that journalism has sailed into dangerous straits.
Others urge journalists to abandon their pursuit of objective reporting and take on the roles of activist and advocate.
Still others suggest that news organizations need to shed their competitive instincts and learn to share sources and reporting rather than fight for scoops. The suggestions are well-intentioned, but most come off as wishful or simplistic.
If pursued, they could make matters worse. Just as we failed to see that democratization could subvert democracy, we may have overlooked the strengths of the mass-media news organization in protecting democracy. Professional gatekeepers have their flaws — they can narrow the range of views presented to the public, and they can stifle voices that should be heard — yet through the exercise of their professionalism they also temper the uglier tendencies of human nature.
They make it less likely that ignorance, gullibility, and prejudice will poison our conversations and warp our politics. The most important lesson we can take from the the last election may be an unfashionable one:The Political Science Department policy is that incidents of plagiarism, cheating, or other forms of academic dishonesty will be penalized.
Penalties will vary from an F in the assignment to a grade of F in the course, and will be reported to the Dean of Students.
A write-in candidate is a candidate in an election whose name does not appear on the ballot, but for whom voters may vote nonetheless by writing in the person's name. The system is almost totally confined to elections in the United States.
Some U.S. states and local jurisdictions allow a voter to affix a sticker, with the write-in candidate's name, to the ballot in lieu of actually writing in.
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