culturshock

sizing up media, technology, and society

Archive for January 2008

Blog Updates

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Hey everyone

I’m just dropping a quick post to give you the heads up about a few of the site changes that I hope will not only make navigation a little easier, but also provide you with a few ways of accessing the content that has piqued my interest recently.

First off, I’ve noticed so far that I have been a little long winded in posts, and while that may change, I have chosen to implement page breaks. This means that for each post I make, only the initial chunk or an introduction will be found on the first page. This doesn’t mean less content, although it does mean that I insist you put in a little bit more effort and click the Read More at the bottom of said chunk in order to get access to the rest of the post. Also, I (mostly) expect that embedded videos will make their appearances after the jump, as to speed up load times of the site. There will of course be the odd attention grabbers that will make the front page, but I will keep these to a minimum. I feel these changes will help make the blog speedier and easier to navigate, so I hope you enjoy them!

There’s more changes to read about, but it’s time for a test… Read the rest of this entry »

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Written by jon.

January 25, 2008 at 2:24 pm

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Seminar: Mediating Spaces

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The following is the complete research I used in my section of our seminar on Monday. Thanks to everyone for the support and the participation in the discussion!

In keeping with the week’s theme of media: then and now, I have divided my analysis into two broad sections.First, I seek to analyze how spaces and notions of space have been reshaped, transformed, and problematized through mediation and remediation. Whether incorporated into the spaces themselves, or introduced by their human occupants, the presence of mediating technology has played a number of key roles in the evolution of spaces, in both the literal/physical sense, but also in an intangible, experiential sense.

I hope to progress from this analysis into an examination of what Bolter & Grusin (quoting Marc Auge) “non-places”, spaces “defined not by their associations with local history, or even on the ground upon which they are built, but primarily by the reality of the media they contain” (p 179). Non-local spaces such as shopping malls and bars have reached such heights of hypermediation that any examination of their general functioning inevitably leads us to a consideration of their constituent channels of information. My final point of investigation (to be continued in a later post) will lead us to the entrance of what is perhaps the ultimate non-place, known to many as the World Wide Web. Of the WWW, we can ask questions of its radical remediation and the consequences of its unyielding march forward.

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Written by jon.

January 24, 2008 at 3:55 pm

Perspectives: We are only capable of experiencing that which we have access to

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In considering media studies, I will acknowledge and make use of a few broad, personal perspectives that I hope will prove useful in the investigation of media’s extensive reach into our lives, individually and collectively. These perspectives have arisen not only out of my personal research, random ponderings, and discussions with others, but also from my exposure to other materials that I have encountered throughout my university education. Here they are, in no particular order:

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Written by jon.

January 17, 2008 at 3:52 pm

Posted in Self-reflexive

Unlimited Wishes

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Child Bankrupts Make-A-Wish Foundation With Wish For Unlimited Wishes

This satirical-through-the-nose video clip from the Onion does an excellent job of highlighting the near absurdities that find their way into the Mainstream Media.  The segment focuses on the economic implications of a dying child’s wish, and the juxtaposition couldn’t be more effective.  Daily news broadcasts can rattle on about the state of currency values, interest rates, company earnings, murders, and violence in the Middle East with little to no consideration of the human aspect of the story.  In fact, we can often find that any humanity in a news piece is understood in economic or ideological terms, as opposed to humanistic.  The most ironic of all, is that celebrities seem to get the most human face-time, with research into his/her motivations, private life, and legal battles over….yeah you guessed it, children.

Written by jon.

January 16, 2008 at 9:24 pm

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First post!

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Hey everyone, and welcome to Culturshock, a blog for THST*2450: Approaches to Media Studies, taught at the University of Guelph.I hope to get the content on this site up and rolling shortly. On the incoming list I have a mammoth introduction to me, Jon McCoubrey, including some generic personal details and history, my ideas and my (current) areas of interest.

Hot on the trail of these posts, I will be jumping into a discussion of my upcoming presentations with Felicia, Dave, and Andrew next class (Week 3), where we will be considering the progression of media technologies in the past decade, how they impact the experience of the information consumer, and the kind of implications this trans-media progression holds for the citizen of the future.

Stay tuned!

jon.

Written by jon.

January 16, 2008 at 9:12 pm

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