[-empyre-] Media and Self

Susan Barnes susanbbarnes at gmail.com
Thu Jul 30 03:20:00 AEST 2015

Coming from a communication perspective, media ecologist examine how media
environments influence people.  On a cognitive level, reading tended to
make people more reflective.  Today, on the Internet, anyone can be an
instant celebrity.  Television really helped to establish the concept of
the celebrity in culture. A key difference between television (mass media)
and the Internet is interactivity and participation.  Only producers could
participate in television programming.  On the Internet everyone can be a
content creator.  More the participation on the Internet can be almost
instant.  Take a selfie and immediately post it on the Web.

The instant digital representations of self are the opposite of the
reflexive reading self.  Selfies are often spontaneous and not planned.
Pictures can be taken during different moods and circumstances.  Do these
instant images represent the self or an aspect of the individual?
Moreover, we can represent ourselves in many different ways online.  Making
the digital self multi-sided.  Therefore, different people may get
different impressions of the same person.  Additionally, what do these
multiple images of self tell us about ourselves?  Are we the mediated
image? Or is there something else that makes us an individual?
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