Digital Media and Democracy
Tactics in Hard Times
480 pp., 7 x 9 in, 21 b&w illus.
- Published: August 13, 2010
- Publisher: The MIT Press
- Published: April 18, 2008
- Publisher: The MIT Press
Media scholars, artists, activists, and journalists discuss how the uses of the emerging “Social Web” redefine the public sphere and influence mainstream journalism.
In an age of proliferating media and news sources, who has the power to define reality? When the dominant media declared the existence of WMDs in Iraq, did that make it a fact? Today, the “Social Web” (sometimes known as Web 2.0, groupware, or the participatory web)—epitomized by blogs, viral videos, and YouTube—creates new pathways for truths to emerge and makes possible new tactics for media activism. In Digital Media and Democracy, leading scholars in media and communication studies, media activists, journalists, and artists explore the contradiction at the heart of the relationship between truth and power today: the fact that the radical democratization of knowledge and multiplication of sources and voices made possible by digital media coexists with the blatant falsification of information by political and corporate powers. The book maps a new digital media landscape that features citizen journalism, The Daily Show, blogging, and alternative media. The contributors discuss broad questions of media and politics, offer nuanced analyses of change in journalism, and undertake detailed examinations of the use of web-based media in shaping political and social movements. The chapters include not only essays by noted media scholars but also interviews with such journalists and media activists as Amy Goodman of Democracy Now!, Media Matters host Robert McChesney, and Hassan Ibrahim of Al Jazeera.
Contributors and Interviewees
Shaina Anand, Chris Atton, Megan Boler, Axel Bruns, Jodi Dean, Ron Deibert, Deepa Fernandes, Amy Goodman, Brian Holmes, Hassan Ibrahim, Geert Lovink, Nathalie Magnan, Robert McChesney, Graham Meikle, Susan Moeller, Alessandra Renzi, Ricardo Rosas, Trebor Scholz, D. Travers Scott, Rebecca Statzel
An ideal introduction to tactical media. All the chapters come from academics and activists who have made significant contributions to the field. The editing of the collection excels at putting these authors in dialogue, often referencing and responding to each other's ideas. The reflexivity of the book opens up more questions than it answers—exactly the task of a book that will be a great inspiration for the next wave of media activists.
Fenwick Robert McKelvey
Canadian Journal of Communication
Digital Media and Democracy shows how voices of dissent can come from many different quarters as people utilize the resources they have available in new and innovative ways.
Online Information Review
Digital Media and Democracy is an essential resource for scholars and students of the interfaces, synergies, and interstices between democracy, politics, media, and activism.
Media International Australia
Digital Media and Democracy's distinctive value lies in Boler's effort to balance traditional scholarly issues with more practical, activist concerns...This volume offers a rare engagement with decidedly practical political concerns, addressed it seems, as much to activists as to academics...Useful and insightful.
Michael A. Xenos
Information Communication and Society