What is the greatest danger of algorithmic culture? Christian Sandvig describes it as "corrupt personalization."
Martha M. Lauzen is executive director of the Center for the Study of Women in Television and Film and on the film and television faculty at San Diego State University. The center conducts an extensive agenda of original research on women working on screen and behind the scenes in film and television. Lauzen is the author of annual studies of women working in film (The Celluloid Ceiling) [2013 PDF] and television (Boxed In) [2012-13 PDF], as well as numerous articles examining women’s employment patterns and representation. See also: Films 4 2 interview with Lauzen (2003), and Why film schools teach screenwriters not to pass the Bechdel test (2008, Jennifer Kesler for The Hathor Legacy)
The Philosopher's Mail "The world's most popular English language news website is the Daily Mail. People can't stop reading it, but often complain of how it leaves you feeling. So some fellow philosophers and I have joined together with the ex editor of Britain's Daily Express to start the world's only news outlet staffed only by philosophers. We cover a lot of the same material as the Mail, but handle it very very differently."
Media Studies professor Anne Helen Petersen writes about the dominant role of Netflix in her students’ film and television consumption, and its effect on the lasting influence of works that are — or are not — available there:
Through this reliance on Netflix, I’ve seen a new television pantheon begin to take form: there’s what’s streaming on Netflix, and then there’s everything else…[more inside]
Grierson believed strongly that the filmmaker had a social responsibility, and that film could help a society realize democratic ideals. His absolute faith in the value of capturing the drama of everyday life was to influence generations of filmmakers all over the world. In fact, he coined the term "documentary film." [more inside]
Learning from YouTube. Ms. Juhasz, a professor of media studies, felt that her students needed to participate in this new medium in order to critique it. The same was true of her work: Academic writing on YouTube demands videos, not just words. That idea got a major boost this month when the MIT Press released Learning From YouTube, a free "video book" that was written by Ms. Juhasz and grew out of her class. It's the first time the press has published an online-only book, and it helped developers build a new platform for authorship that they hope will be used for more such works. It's also a test of academic waters: Will similar publications, backed by established presses, count toward tenure?
George Gerbner, a pioneer in the research of TV's effects on society, advocated a theory called Mean World Syndrome. According to this theory, exposure to the media leads people to believe the world is more dangerous than it actually is, because of violent programming and terrifying news programs. This is part of cultivation theory, the idea that humans are brought up in a culture of stories, reflect those stories, and that TV is now our main storyteller.