In module one, you have acquired an overall understanding of new media, their characteristics, and a few perspectives considering the personal and social consequences of media-in-use. Overall, we get the sense that digital media are changing the nature of our social connections. Nancy Baym encourages us to think that if we want to understand how new media influence our social lives, we need to start by understanding the capacities of each new media.
This assignment requires you to complete two parts. For both parts, focus on ONE digital media you and your peers frequently use and then perform some analysis.
Part 1: (~300 words)
In Module 1, you have encountered several models and perspectives which assist you in assessing the media affordances, features, and user experiences. Please identify and illustrate five (5) prominent and unique affordances/characteristics/features of the medium of your choice. For each of the five specified affordances/characteristics/features, please elaborate on how they are designed to achieve what and how they (dis)encourage certain types of interaction.
Answering Resources: Baym’s New Forms of Personal Connection; Sundar’s Media Effect 2.0
Part 2 (800 words)
Marshall McLuhan claims, “the spread of …(new media)… enhanced individuality, … detribalized society and create isolated ‘points of view.’” He further argued, “The medium is the message” in that “many significant and pervasive social influences derive more from the nature of the medium employed than from the particular messages sent through it (Meyrowitz, 2009, pp. 521-522).”
Please respond to McLuhan’s claims by referring to the identified characteristics/features/affordances in Part 1. To help you jump-start your critical thinking, I encourage you to engage with the following questions first: what is your understanding and uptake of McLuhan’s perspective? What social changes derive from new media? What are the consequences of these social changes? Can you support your position using the readings and your experiences with new media?
Answering Resources: Meyrowitz’s Medium Theory; Fuchs’ web 2.0 and surveillance
For this assignment, you must develop an opinion, argument, or stance (i.e., your thesis) that relates to the assigned module reading materials. You must also make explicit connections to the reading materials in your essay writing.
Since this is a short writing assignment, a clear thesis and in-depth analysis will be more appreciated than the breadth of the coverage. Practice insightful thinking! Rambling on about your experiences will not be a good choice.
Cite at least three assigned readings in M1 and at least one external authoritative source (i.e., journal articles, news from reputable sources). Cite sources in appropriate APA format for both in-text and end-of-text citations.
Make sure your paper is a carefully edited and spell-checked copy in standard manuscript format –12-pt type, double-spaced lines, one-inch margins on all four sides.