Final Exam Question #3

Olivia Ellis

Word Count: 577poliwordle

Political communications has changed a lot since the early American politics to today’s politics.  Currents in Communication:  Textbook and Reader, 2nd Edition compares the travel of Lincoln’s speech and Obama’s speech during their political careers: “A transcript and news of Lincoln’s speech traveled relatively slowly through the country, printed and reprinted in newspapers in cities large and small.  Obama’s speech was seen as it was delivered by millions of people and then was the subject of nearly endless commentary, also on television, during the course of the next several days.  The changes in the methods of communication, as well as the consistency, are significant.”  Back in the early American politics, the communication used by the politicians was directed towards the elite, not the everyday people like it is today.  The way they communicated to each other was through the use of letters and closed meetings.  The newspaper was used as a political communication method to strike at the political parties.  Besides the newspaper, the pamphlet also played a big role in political communication.  A popular pamphlet during the American Revolution was Common Sense, written by Thomas Paine.  It made its way through the elite and to the everyday people.  As the literacy rates began to climb, ways of political communication were improved and advanced to new and better things such as the printing.  Later on in the 1840s ways of communication in politics transformed into campaign songs, buttons, and independent newspapers dedicated to one candidate.  In 1844 the telegraph became popular after reporting the Whig presidential nominating convention in Baltimore to Washington D.C.  The typewriter also became very popular because of the quick way to type articles for newspapers.  In 1920 the radio became a hot bed for presidential elections and politics in general.  The television started to play a big role in politics during 1952.  “The shift to television as the vehicle for political campaigning had a profound influence on the practice of politics.  On the one hand, the way a candidate looked and performed on television, and the effectiveness of the television commercials their campaigns crafted, became increasingly important.  On the other hand, political parties and their organizations became less important.  Candidates, who had to raise enormous amounts of money to find television commercials, became increasingly independent of the parties with which they were affiliated.”  The last form of political communications that changed the way politics are conducted was the internet and social media. (Chapter 6 Currents in Communication:  Textbook and Reader, 2nd Edition)

Some important changes in political communication and how were they impacted by new communication technologies are choosing what type of news you want want to watch instead of being subjected to one news company, how fast news spreads now through social media and the internet, the way people are able to express their feelings towards politicians and what they do by using social media, and being able to donate to candidates right through the internet which makes it easier for everyone.

American Politicians now use media to their advantage during elections.  information about a candidate and his or her views and goals are posted and uploaded to YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, etc.  MySpace to Your Space:  How Celebrity Politics and the Internet are Transforming Political Communication Among American Youth states that “Fans based their decisions on how they self-identify with politicians”.  The use of social media by politicians creates a sense of a more personal relationship between the candidates and every day people.

Watch video to get a complete understanding of how the new media changed politics:

Sources Used:

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Chapter 6 Currents in Communication:  Textbook and Reader, 2nd Edition


Media Theory Throughout the Years

By: Patrick O’Shea

Word Count: 578

Medium theory is centered on the specific characteristics of media and how it impacts the individual and society. For example, how are the various types of communicating different physically, psychologically, and socially from human interaction? Media is a concept that affects whole social environments; it’s not just a way to communicate with one another.


Harold Innis and Marshall McLuhan were the two men among the first generation of medium theorists. One of Innis’ main ideas was that social and political power is connected to the idea of communication impacting society. The printing press allowed the public to be in possession of the Bible, instead of the Church solely having possession of holy scribes. McLuhan focuses on how new forms of media change the the perception of whole societies. Additionally, McLuhan argued that media has an affect on the human body as well. In his book Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man, McLuhan writes “It is the persistent theme of this book that all technologies are extensions of our physical and nervous system to increase power and speed” (90). McLuhan summarized the history of medium theory into three major periods: oral, writing/printing, and electronic.

Oral societies depended on the memory of the people in order to uphold ideas. It was an era where the culture and people were closely knit together. Oral societies were shut out from stretching their ideas. It was extremely complicated to remember expressions, novel ideas, and complex arguments in cultures that have little options to write them and down. However, because of their compact community, they gained social and sensory experience. The oral world develops the senses of hearing, sight, smell, taste, and touch.

The next era is that of the printing press. The introduction of the printing press and other printed materials separates society. The poor and illiterate remained in the oral society, while the high middle class and the upper class broke off from the community by going to libraries and other institutions to write down their ideas. People no longer share similar experiences because the oral community is unable to understand the things written down.


The electronic media era recalls a characteristic of oral society but in a different manner. Electronic media brought about action, awareness, and response like an oral society. However, it differs in that it allows us to spread information to massive amounts of people. It allowed society to communicate across all areas of the world.

Web 2.0 can be explained as “a way to interactively share information and collaborate using the World Wide Wibe” (Manno). It changes the way we interact on the Internet. Our whole society is becoming a part of the Internet. We no longer just use it as a tool. Social media allows us to receive the opinions of people all across the world on a certain subject. It’s easy access through social media such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and others that allows doing it. The amount of communicating done through Web 2.0 is so necessary in today’s competitive business world. Web 2.0 provides businesses with an efficient way of gaining consumers attention through the Internet. Students need it for the sake of their personal network to get them a job. Web 2.0 can have a negative affect on society as well. The upcoming generation that has been subject to Web 2.0 may lose social skills that businesses will be looking for. Sometimes a face-to-face relationship is more important than simply sending them an email.


Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man- Marshall McLuhan

Television Is Becoming Obsolete

By: Evan Frohock

Word Count: 649


Television is continuously changing. In the 1920s, television became commercially available. Since then, television has been constantly molding and evolving. There are many things that contribute to the change in television. New technology is one thing that is always changing televisions. Competition and consumer needs are also continually changing television. With consumers using new hand held devices and computers, television development has been continuously changing over the past decades. Like hand held devices and computers, Web 2.0 is also changing television. Television has already hit its peak, and with developments such as hand held devices and Web 2.0, television is slowing becoming obsolete.

Many forces have shaped the development of televisions over the decades. One thing that has shaped the development of television is new technology. From the first picture on screen in 1926, to the latest flat screen televisions in 2015, new technology is always changing television. (Click HERE to watch a short clip on the evolution of television). Consumers are another big influence in the way in which television has changed. Some consumers want more than just a flat screen television to watch their favorite shows on. Today there are multiple different types of television. Sony is currently making a 3 dimensional television, to try to keep up with consumer needs. LG is currently making curved televisions, to ensure that wherever the viewer is, he/she can see the television. Bose is making a television that you can just hang up on the wall and receive surround sound from the television itself, with no speakers around the viewer. No matter what it is, television is forever changing to meet consumer requirements and requests. Despite how much consumers and technology have changed television, I personally believe that nothing has changed television quite like the creation of hand held devises, tablets, and modern computers.

New technology is slowly making television outdated. With the creation of iPhone, iPad, and other tablets, people do not feel the need to watch as much television. It is also just as easy to access television through tablets as it is to turn on a television and switch to the channel that you would like to watch. Web 2.0 is another factor in the continual change of television. Web 2.0 can be described as, “The second stage of development of the World Wide Web, characterized especially by the change from static web pages to dynamic or user-generated content and the growth of social media.” Web 2.0 gained a lot of traction, and is used by people on the Internet every day. Web 2.0 is easy, and everyone has the ability to use it. Tapscott and Williams, writers of the famous book “Wikinomics” suggest, “Whether people are creating, sharing, or socializing, the new Web is principally about participating rather than about passively receiving information” (2006:37). One example of Web 2.0 that is slowly making television dated is the growing company, “Netflix”. Netflix gives users the accessibility to watch popular television shows right from their phone, tablet, or computer.


As we know, television in 2015 is different than television in 2000. In ten or fifteen more years, I personally see television as being out-of-date. We as a society are moving towards a world where television will not be used. With computers, tablets, hand held devices, and Web 2.0; television will be old-fashioned in another ten or fifteen years. As we analyze the chart to the left, it is noticeable that each year there is a decrease of time spent watching television. In 2011, the average weekly time spent watching television among 18-24 year olds was roughly 25 hours. The same survey was taken in 2014, and the average time came out to roughly 19 hours. Although six hours does not seem like much, each year this statistic has a larger gap. More and more people are straying away from the traditional way of watching television. With these changes in the Web 2.0 era, television as we know today will be obsolete in the near future.

The History of Television

By: Chris Zelante


While TV is seen as an essential part of our every day lives today, it was not always that way. Before the days of twenty-four hour news coverage and reality shows that made people from the Jersey shore look like scum, television was a more simple and innovative way that people received news, entertainment, and everyday information. Paul Gottlieb Nipkow, a German student, created the original Television in the late 1800’s. This simple creation was called the “electric telescope” and had about 18 lines of resolution. Not long after that an American inventor named Charles Jenkins used similar technology and concepts as Nipkow to create the first mechanical television in history. The television went on to receive many make overs and changes through the years including the potential of using cathode ray tubes and the change to the electronic television that we all know today.

During its early years Television was much different than how we know it today. There were not hundreds of channels and constant broadcast going on and not everyone was wealthy enough to even own a TV at the time. In the early 1930’s Television sets were being sold for about four hundred dollars and the there were only a few major networks broadcasting at the time. Airing important events such as world news, high profile sports matches, and presidential elections, TV was in a much simpler stage. By the 1960’s television had begun to change towards what know today. Due to the growing desire for entertainment and events such as the Kennedy assassination, the space race, and the Vietnam War people craved constant updates and information on what was going on worldwide. Television took off from here and never looked back.

Today the average American home has about 2.71 televisions and only 2.55 people. News is broadcasted around the clock and television as a whole has become something that those early inventors could have never imagined. From reality television to social trends, television covers everything you could imagine and more. Coupled with the growth of the Internet and Web 2.0 television has been taken to an all-new level. “However, although ‘content creation’ might appear to be a new term, it has deep industrial roots. The term ‘content’ itself, as Fortunato makes it clear, is derived from the mass-media industry, where ‘the primary business of the mass media is to produce content – fill the broadcast hours, the print pages, the internet site’. (2005: xi).”  Today TV and Web 2.0 work off of each other, one creating buzz for the other and drawing viewers into their topics. Social media sites such as twitter, instagram, or Facebook are how the young generation initially hear about breaking news. While these generations may no longer be constantly watching the news like their parents may have, with the use of social media they are constantly up to date and aware of what is going on worldwide.

mobile_vs_tv_1_v1b-11The evolution of TV has come a long way from the box sets that only received four channels. Today people can view thousands of channels and have the ability to watch TV from their mobile devices even when they aren’t home. This onslaught of technology has caused TV and social media to become a dynamic duo that cover just about anything you can think of. With the ability to receive breaking news updates on your phone and tune in from anywhere you want, the news and media have grown larger than anyone could have imagined and there is no telling what might happen in the coming years.

Caulfield Lecture 2015

By Bailey Myers and Billy Walsh

On Monday, April 20th, 2015, Loyola University Maryland welcomed Kara Swisher to speak at the 2015 Muriel & Clarence J. Caulfield Memorial Lecture.  Swisher, a former reporter for the Washington Post and author of “ How Steve Case beat Bill Gates, Nailed the Netheads and Made Millions in the War for the Web” and “There Must Be a Pony in Here Somewhere: The AOL Time Warner Debacle and the Quest for a Digital Future, ” spoke about intergrading technology more and more into our everyday lives. She talked about how sensors over the coming years will be everywhere. She mentioned how in San Francisco they have sensors already in parking spaces to alert to you or whoever where their car can park. Also, with Google’s purchase of Nest, a company that produces smoke alarms and thermostats, companies will be able to track what you do away from the web.  As more developments are put into play, this new life style would mean a huge change for how we live compared to today. She was saying how we have to be weary that something like Terminator or the Borg doesn’t come out of us trying to increase our livelihoods. She made points that the way we live today will be radically changed. I was thinking during the lecture about all the laws that will need to be changed and how much of an overhaul the American Government will have to go through to be up to par with the technological changes.  How will the government regulate this new technology? Technology will only continue to advance in the near future, but will we be ready?

What is a Meme?

A meme is a cultural idea that spreads throughout the world through the media. They have become extremely popular throughout the last decade with the rise of social media and Web 2.0. In the early 2000’s the term web 2.0 was popularized referring to websites that allow users to interact with each other. These kinds of sites include, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and many others.

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These are some of the many different memes used today. The first is of Jackie Chan, the next is Yao Ming and the last is Barack Obama. These examples are usually used when someone is reacting to something and want to show their emotions. Before memes, it was difficult to express that you were confused, angry, or impressed.

Websites like “I Can Has Cheezburger,” make money off of generating memes. Mr. Huh, the owner of the site has now reached 16 million unique visitors. With this many viewers, other companies start to pay to put their advertisements on the website bringing in a lot of profit. Similarly, their memes get spread all over the internet bringing more viewership to their site. You can see their memes on sites like Facebook and Twitter being shared by the company itself or people that have seen their memes.

When asked to create a meme myself, I thought it would be easy, but thinking of something entertaining and original proved to be quite difficult. It took me a long time to pick out an image and think of my own caption for it. After a long time of thinking I made one that someone else most likely already thought of, but it was the best I could do.

To Meme or Not to Meme

Nye and deGrasse

By Bailey Myers and Billie Walsh

A meme is a form of Internet content that is used to portray a cultural symbol or idea.  Memes are generally humor focused all tell a short story with just a few words.  Meme’s formed online are examples of Web 2.0.  Web 2.0 is the use of the Internet to create user generated content.  Anyone can gain access to any meme generating websites.  These websites include Wikipedia, WordPress, and social media websites.  Web 2.0 allows the internet to be filled with diverse content. I Can Has Cheezburger is a big place where memes are created.

A “meme” has been around for a long time. A meme is “an idea, behavior, or style that spreads from person to person within a culture.” It shorter version of modeled on gene. Richard Dawkins coined it in his book, The Selfish Gene. It wasn’t until the internet and Web 2.0 that memes started to form into something different, what we know today. These pictures with words started popping up all over social media. Many of them are actually really clever. One of my favorites is of Neill DeGrasse Tyson with his hands up. The caption is “looks like we have a bad ass. Another meme that I like are any Kim Jong Un ones. They are just too funny. These memes have become a big social movement and a way to communicate. “I have several friends who love to text memes in our group chat from home. It is a great way to say what you’re thinking or feeling at that time.” (Myers) The one at the top of this page is a great one. It is Tyson and Bill Nye poorly photoshopped in a car. The caption makes me laugh every time I see it.

Memes have become a form of expression and will continue to do so. They are so ingrained into our society and culture today, that it is impossible for them to stop. People will never stop making memes, gifs, YouTube videos, vines, or what have you. They are forms of expression. They have transcended just pictures. The internet is just like a meme in that sense. It has become more of a self expression of billions of people and will continue to be that way unless turned off externally. Memes and self expression are here to stay with the help of the internet and I couldn’t be more happy.