Saturday, 5 March 2016


                  Abstract January-April 2016


DOI: 10.15655/mw/2016/v7i1/87410
Race for Virtual Reality Monopolization and the Predatory Arise of News Media Monoliths
Dr. Sony Jalarajan Raj
Editor-in-Chief, The Journal of Media Watch
The New York Times has announced its gate-crashing into the world of virtual reality news presentation with heavy marketing strategies, even though there have been many innovative and creative attempts of virtual reality news explorations that have already made land marks. NYT’s systematically designed market shaking virtual reality attempt has been made real by covering millions through Google collaborations. The refugee crisis and their struggles in the no man’s land have been filmed and titled as ‘The Displaced’ for the first virtual reality view of The New York Times through the Google cardboard viewer. Over and above, a news worthy experimentation, it can be cited as an intelligent and throat cut market strategy of the NYT to sell the news as a global product.
The convergence of technology and platforms such as smart phones, apps, lenses and satellites have enabled both the Google and NYT to tell the stories of refugee kids from South Sudan, Ukraine and Syria. The sad stories of the soul searching refugee kids have become a free and sponsored staple diet for millions of NYT subscribed readers across North America. Those readers have experienced close-ups, panoramic views and pans by subscribing a printed newspaper. While celebrating the tears right in front of their eyes, the NYTexpect that their news consumers may get a unique sense of empathy with the subjects and news events. Diversified geographies may frequently appear in front of the consumers’ eyes by subscribing a print enhanced with apps, smart gadgets and lens.
Is this a new form of news dissemination/story telling or promoting a technological product for a brand recognition? As cat video tech ventures such as Snapchat, Vine, and Periscope have started redefining the time and space concept of news formats, mainstream media moguls have sensed the heat and pressure to innovate and compete. Being in the limelight is important to make one’s presence visible. More Virtual Reality experiments are coming from tech ventures of Oculus Rift, T Brand Studio, Framestore, General Electric and MINI. Hence, yet another virtual reality explosion in the news world is definite.
While the symbiotic relations between the news media and technology reach a crucial juncture, the consumers are becoming more selective and narrow casted. The new challenge is to increase the consumers’ participation in this diversified and technology enhanced news presentation. Hence forgetting the rivalry and the throat cut competitions, new corporate alliances are taking into shape. The giant media corporations of the world are initiating aggressive merging and acquisition strategies to tighten their ownership control and retain their customer base. Takeovers and buy outs in the media industries are becoming the everyday catch phrases in the global stock markets. Along with business strategies and associations, these acquisitions and mergers bring forward technological innovations to tighten the ownership control, increase profit and widen the user experiences for brand loyalties.
Facebook with its new and its acquisition of LiveRail, a San Francisco/California-based online video advertising company, gate crashed into the blue chip 10 most valued stock club among the Standard & Poor’s 500 index listing, whereas Google launched its news data center which is labelled as the power plant for the Internet in Alabama to tap the scribes and monitor the news media under their radar. Along with establishing a ‘news lab’ that collaborates with  journalist and entrepreneurs in providing quality news and information to the world, Google is also on its way to an innovative project—Project Loon—a balloon powered internet (wireless) facility to connect rural and remote areas of the world. NBC is undergoing radical shift and remodeling whereas The New York Time’s collaboration with Microsoft and Apple for their mobile presence is proving successful with its popularity reaching even the Russian readers. Data and value utilization form the main target for all of these corporations.
News and its gatekeepers are getting more influenced by the new start-ups and social media ventures that dominate the social web. Everything is becoming instant and homogeneous. Shifting audience demographics and new entrepreneurships in the information and communication world are eagerly looking at sustaining the marketing and advertising revenues. The Journal of Media Watchpresents this issue with more diversified content and uncompromising quality. Enjoy reading the research from scholars across the world beyond time and space differences.

© Media Watch 7 (1) 5-18, 2016
ISSN 0976-0911 e-ISSN 2249-8818
DOI: 10.15655/mw/2016/v7i1/86498
Social Mobilization in the Net Space: Re-Constructed Communication, Identity and Power
Cecilia Fe L Sta Maria-Abalos
College of Arts and Communication, University of the Philippines Baguio, Philippines
The internet as a communication platform for netizens has become the hybrid space for social mobilization to forward political agenda.  A take-off from Manuel Castells’ hypotheses on power and counter-power in the network society, this paper is a reading of “Boycott SM Baguio” Facebook Group Page as a space and site for social mobilization. Using textual analysis as a method, reading of the selected posts revealed that the spatial conditions present in the net space effected the reconstruction of identity, group and public and re-shaped the communication process. Elaborating on these two main points elicited a different kind of social mobilization located in the online space that emerged discourses on power, counter-power, political legitimacyand exacerbated questions on sustainability.

© Media Watch 7 (1) 19-29, 2016
ISSN 0976-0911 e-ISSN 2249-8818
DOI: 10.15655/mw/2016/v7i1/86497
Social Media Mania and the Professional Gratification: An Investigation on the Social Media Exposure and Use of Social Media for News Makeup among the Polish Journalists
Robert NĂȘcek & Krzysztof Gurba
Institute of Journalism and Social Communication
Pontifical University of John Paul II, Poland
Traditional and social media interplay in setting media agenda. Intermedial agenda is still in the nascent state and is one of the most dynamic and uncontrolled phenomenon on the border between professional, staff-produced media and the mostly grassroots, user-generated content of social media. One of the crucial roles in the process of media agenda setting and intermedia agenda setting is played by key TV news producers and popular anchors. Our goal in this paper was to study the range of use of social media by top Polish television journalists in their everyday work. Furthermore, we wanted to get a bigger picture of how social media’s use of key TV anchors and editors influence their gate keeping and frame the content they produce. Our research was placed within the paradigm of agenda-setting theory and was conducted in the first half of 2015 with the use of a questionnaire dedicated to the selected group of top Polish mainstream TV journalists.

© Media Watch 7 (1) 30-43, 2016
ISSN 0976-0911 e-ISSN 2249-8818
DOI: 10.15655/mw/2016/v7i1/86500
What is Political about Political Economy: A Rejoinder to the Fuchs-Winseck Debate
Scott Timcke1 & Derek Kootte2
1School of Communication, Simon Fraser University, Canada
2Department of Political Science, University of British Columbia, Vancouver
This paper uses the Winseck-Fuchs debate as a case study in assessing how value preferences shape definitions, predicate logic, and axiomatic reasoning, and in turn influence the analysis of institutions. The study identify and contrast the explanatory power behind different modes of institutional analysis often applied in the study of communication in advanced capitalist societies. Thereafter the study attend to how these modes account for capacity, frame collective actions problems, take account of trade-offs and coalition building, as well as describe behaviour of and within institutions. In the second half of the paper, the study use critical political economic methodologies to examine the ideological coloring of these modes. The study highlight features often overlooked in reductive treatments of states and corporate conglomeration and seek to supplement them with a more sensitive political economic analysis. In this respect, the researchers think there is much scope for communication researchers to contribute to the general analysis of the advantages and problems of political assessment of governance as it relates to the media more broadly.

© Media Watch 7 (1) 44-54, 2016
ISSN 0976-0911 e-ISSN 2249-8818
DOI: 10.15655/mw/2016/v7i1/86490
An analysis of VICE Media’s Expedient  Commodification of Modern Hipster Culture as a Motif of Contemporary Capitalism
Nicholas Ryan Ward
Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada
VICE Media has risen from a local Canadian counterculture magazine to an international corporate giant. Bloomberg Business has valued the company at over $1 billion, while other reputable outlets have placed VICE’s worth at many times that. Remarkably, through its ascension to mainstream relevancy and despite getting into bed with some of the world’s richest and most denounced corporations, VICE has managed to maintain its reputation as a counterculture brand. This qualitative analysis on the evolution of VICE Media presents past interviews and market decisions by VICE owners to exhibit how the company has expediently captured and preserved the attention of millennials through its strategic commodification of 21st century hipsterism. This analysis also relies on the work of prevalent academics and journalists to provide an understanding of VICE, hipsterism and their inherent connection to consumerism. This is an accessible study that demonstrates how VICE identified and harnessed the socio-cultural/socioeconomic phenomenon of hipsterism to amplify its potential as a commercial media institution.

© Media Watch 7 (1) 55-74, 2016
ISSN 0976-0911 e-ISSN 2249-8818
DOI: 10.15655/mw/2016/v7i1/86501
What is Social Media and Why is it Important to Documentary Filmmakers?
Friedrich H. Kohle
Edinburgh University, United Kingdom
Social Media is a binary platform on which all previous forms of media converge. Producers are disappointed that social media does not generate the revenues expected. Documentary filmmakers are challenged to understand, adapt and apply this new technology. This paper examines social media, its origins, applications and limitations by reviewing the predictions made by media theorists. The author conducted case studies and interviewed practicing documentary filmmakers such as the producer of ‘The Act of Killing’. Focus groups among digital natives and immigrants explored their perception of social media. Research includes the production of three documentaries to apply knowledge gained. Less than 5 per cent of digital natives and immigrants investigated perceive social media as a promotional tool. Self-expression, creativity, sharing information globally takes priority.

© Media Watch 7 (1) 75-83, 2016
ISSN 0976-0911 e-ISSN 2249-8818
DOI: 10.15655/mw/2016/v7i1/86493
Digital Detoxification: A Content Analysis of User Generated Videos Uploaded on YouTube by Facebook Quitters
Gurpreet Kour
Mudra Institute of Communications Ahmedabad, India
Social media has not only transformed an individual’s interaction pattern but has also integrated into wide range of interests and practices of online users. This social network facilitates self construction, identity performance and social integration on one hand while mediating fake relationships, unethical practices and invading privacy on the other. This study aims to understand why some Facebook users are quitting this online platform. Content analyses of YouTube videos of those who claim to be Facebook quitters have been analyzed to conceptualize emerging themes. This will be a study inclusive to interpretative paradigm to understand the reasons leading to this digital detoxification and enthusiastic non-Facebook experience. The present study extends this line of research to assess the range of identity claims that users tend to make for constructing online self-identity on Facebook and to investigate how it has affected the decision to quit. Implications and future research directions of digital detoxification by quitting Facebook are discussed.

© Media Watch 7 (1) 84-91, 2016
ISSN 0976-0911 e-ISSN 2249-8818
DOI: 10.15655/mw/2016/v7i1/86496
Role of the Media in Africa’s Democratization Quest: A Case Study of Ghana
Dennis Moot
Ohio University, Athens, USA
In most African states, political openness and tolerance is measured by the non-existence of government censorship, and also the ability of the media to operate without fear. In agreement with the debate posited by Wasserman (2013) including other scholars suggests that the media is capable of building democratic structures as it provides a platform for continuous discussion, communication and dialogue amongst various stakeholders within the state. The objectives of this paper is to assess the disadvantages of sensationalism in the media on the democratic development of Ghana.

© Media Watch 7 (1) 92-104, 2016
ISSN 0976-0911 e-ISSN 2249-8818
DOI: 10.15655/mw/2016/v7i1/86494
Fictional Portrayals of Young People in Chinese and American Juvenile Delinquency Films: A Comparative Study
Universiti Sains Malaysia, Malaysia
This study discusses the differences between Chinese youth film and American teen film through a perspective on cultural foundation. The author argue that Confucianism is an alternative that greatly affects the depiction of young characters and the causal relationship of morality and fate of the characters in Chinese films. In Confucian philosophy, ‘kingdoms’ (guo) and ‘family’ (jia) are equally considered inviolable. ‘Family’ occupies a central position in Confucian culture. Filial piety is a virtue of respect for one’s parents and ancestors. This study attempts to provide a picture of juvenile delinquency depicted in both contemporary Chinese and American youth films. This study argues that ‘juvenile delinquency’ indicates any failure in, or omission of, ‘family’ and ‘kingdoms’. The objective of such a comparison is not to advocate for either Chinese or American youth cinema in portraying juvenile delinquency, but to promote a better understanding of the strengths and impacts of youth cinema and youth culture. It is argued that the depictions of juvenile delinquency expose the social discontent of youths in Chinese youth films.

© Media Watch 7 (1) 105-115, 2016
ISSN 0976-0911 e-ISSN 2249-8818
DOI: 10.15655/mw/2016/v7i1/86492
Corporate Social Responsibility: Relevance of MTN’s Who Wants to Be a Millionaire’ Programme in Nigeria
University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
As continued production and rendering of service is enabled, in this instance, through varying product range as it pertain mobile tele-communication, MTN in Nigeria is attempting to further its CSR bid through the “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire” programme. The need to evaluate its efficacy is premised on continued programming, participation and exactitude of appeal to the public and organization alike in line with stated philosophy/mission of the latter. In so doing, the survey design was employed using structured questionnaire and findings reveal conformity with all assertions while the researchers recommend allowance for especially challenged citizens (prospects) as well as dialectical variation to incorporate all and sundry.

© Media Watch 7 (1) 116-128, 2016
ISSN 0976-0911 e-ISSN 2249-8818
DOI: 10.15655/mw/2016/v7i1/86499
Thriving in the Digital Reality of the Cyber World: Towards a New Teaching and Learning Design
Soumya Jose
Vellore Institute of Technology University, India
The digital literacy and awareness are now not just bound with education. The digital expansion is now a part of social, political, cultural, economic, community, and intellectual life. The education systems at business schools need to help future managers to understand and benefit from their engagement with digital technology and digital cultures. Yet, only a little research has been carried out on the conceptual implications in implementing this shift in curriculum in Indian B Schools. The young minds today are living in a digital reality. The role of various ICT programs in elementary education has helped them to exercise, explore and perform in the digital world. This chapter tries to bring out the importance of various digital world entities in understanding the digital communication better. The implementation of these concepts in our curriculum needs a transformation from formal pedagogic techniques to “cybernetically” distributed informal pedagogies of digital learning. This paper proposes the teaching and learning designs by which the student can understand the digital ecology of communication sphere.
For more information about the journal and conference papers, please write to the Editor, Media Watch (Tel: 94395-37641)