Supplementary Reading List: Mass Communication & Society (J611, Fall 2018 University of Oregon)

Life of an internet and social media addict

Last month I published the reading list for my graduate class this term, J611 Mass Communication and Society, and my approach to teaching the class. However, one major challenge is that new data, analysis and reports are published all the time.

All of the reading that I’ve assigned the class is recent, so I decided not to make any changes to it, but instead offer students — and fellow Medium readers — a constantly evolving list of supplementary reading (posted below) relevant to the key themes we are exploring this term:

  • Changes to media and society (especially users habits)
  • The new digital overlords
  • New actors and the old media establishment
  • Making media pay
  • Policy, Inclusion and Societal Impact
  • Emerging Issues (especially trust, AI and automation)
  • The Future / Looking Ahead

This list will be fluid, so feel free to bookmark it and to keep coming back!

Week One: Where are we now? A recent history of changes to media and society

The End of Endings, by Amanda Hess, New York Times (December 2018)

Week Two: The new digital overlords

Decentralisation: the next big step for the world wide web, by Zoë Corbyn, The Observer (September 2018)

How — And Why — Apple, Google, And Facebook Follow You Around In Real Life, by DJ Pangburn, Fast Company (December 2017)

Week Three: New actors and the old media establishment

How The New York Times Is Clawing Its Way Into The Future, by Gabriel Snyder, Wired (Feb 2017)

Journalism That Stands Apart: The Report of the 2020 Group, New York Times (January 2017)

The leaked New York Times innovation report is one of the key documents of this media age, by Joshua Benton, Nieman Lab (May 2014) + here’s a PDF of the 2014 Innovation Report.

Week 4: Show me the money: making media pay

The secret cost of pivoting to video, by Heidi N. Moore, CJR (September 2017)

Facebook Admitted That It Was Inflating Video Metrics. Now a Lawsuit Says the Problem Started Much Earlier — and Was Way Worse, by David Meyer, Fortune (October 2018).

Did Facebook’s faulty data push news publishers to make terrible decisions on video?, by Laura Hazard Owen, Nieman Lab (October 2018)

Week 6: Policy, Inclusion and Societal Impact

Fighting disinformation with media literacy — in 1939, by Anya Schiffrin, CJR (October 2018)

A Free And Responsible Press, by The Commission On Freedom Of The Press, The University Of Chicago Press (published in 1947)

If you’re poor in the UK you get less, worse news — especially online, new research suggests, by Laura Hazard Owen, Nieman Lab (October 2018)

The case for less speech, by Jason Pontin, Wired (November 2018)

Week 7: Emerging Issues (with a focus on trust and misinformation)

Deepfake Videos Are Getting Impossibly Good, by George Dvorsky, Gizmodo (June 2018)

Daniel Radcliffe and the Art of the Fact-Check: Researching his role in “The Lifespan of a Fact,” the actor embeds in The New Yorker’s fact-checking department, by Michael Schulman, The New Yorker (October 2018)

Even the best AI for spotting fake news is still terrible, by Karen Hao, MIT Technology Review (October 2018)

In Brazil’s presidential election, hoaxes about voter fraud run rampant, by Daniel Funke, Poynter (October 2018)

This Is How We Radicalized The World, by Ryan Broderick, BuzzFeed (October 2018)

How the U.S. Has Failed to Protect the 2018 Election — and Four Ways to Protect 2020, by Alex Stamos, LawFare (August 2018)

How The Wall Street Journal is preparing its journalists to detect deepfakes, by Francesco Marconia and Till Daldrup, Nieman Lab (November 2018)

Week 8: Emerging Issues (Part 2 with a particular focus on automation, voice and AI)

When Your Boss Is an Algorithm, by Alex Rosenblat, New York Times Opinion (October 2018)

Deepfakes helped Charli XCX imitate the Spice Girls in her latest music video, James Vincent, The Verge (October 2018)

Week 9: The Future / Looking Ahead

To be added.