18,795 Media Ecology Association: March 2022 Newsletter

The Official Newsletter for the Media Ecology Association      
March 2022 Newsletter

APPLICATION EXTENDED **The deadline to submit paper and panel proposals for the 2022 MEA convention has been extended to March 25, 2022.**THE TWENTY-THIRD ANNUA: CONVENTION OF THE MEDIA ECOLOGY ASSOCIATION

Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, July 7–10, 2022

“Dewey opens an important chapter in Experience and Nature with the seemingly preposterous claim that ‘of all things communication is the most wonderful.’ …The object, then, of recasting our studies of communication in terms of a ritual model is not only to more firmly grasp the essence of this ‘wonderful’ process but to give us a way in which to rebuild a model of and for communication of some restorative value in reshaping our common culture.” —James W. Carey, 1989

The Media Ecology Association (MEA) invites the submission of abstracts of papers and proposals for panels for presentation at its 23rd Annual Convention, which will be held from July 7-10, 2022 at Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The new deadline for submissions is March 25, 2022.The annual meeting of the MEA provides an opportunity for our community of scholars, educators, professionals and practioners to exchange experiences and ideas in a friendly environment. Participants at MEA conventions address a wide diversity of topics in our programs, and we encourage submissions that explore media ecological approaches from any number of different disciplines and fields of knowledge and social practice. We are interested in papers, thematic panels, roundtable discussion panels, creative projects, performance sessions, and other proposals of interest to media ecologists.

While we are open to explorations on any topic of interest to media ecologists, we also include a convention theme with the aim of generating further discussion and probes involving multiple perspectives. Submissions do not have to address the theme, but are invited to do so.

The theme of the 2022 convention is Celebration. A long period of turmoil has seen social division, self-isolation and perpetual stress become our daily norm. Through various conflicts and trials, it has been the strength of our relationships and associations that have sustained us. Resilience is more than an individual trait. It is the product of self-care and mutual concern. The so-called “good life” includes our ability to individually and collectively endure great challenges, while reminding ourselves that joy must not be inhibited by the obstacles in our way. We continue to celebrate our accomplishments and our associations as an affirmative enterprise in making and remaking this human condition. The annual Media Ecology Association Convention helps our community mark these important milestones, celebrating our hard work and our commitment to one another. This is true in any year, but in particular in these times it is vital to raise up this sensibility and center it as a cause in our 2022 proceedings.

General topics of interest related to the convention theme (but not limited to):
Community Life
Rituals of Celebration and Affirmation Technology as a Connecting Agent
Art and the Expression of Joy
Education and the Learning of Resilience
Surviving the Maelstrom … and Thriving
Positive Psychology and Media Ecology
Science and Sanity: General Semantics

Guidelines for Submission
Please submit paper and panel proposals, in English, by March 25, 2022 to MEA2022Convention@gmail.com.
A maximum of two submissions per author will be accepted. Authors who wish their papers to be considered for the Top Paper or Top Student Paper award must indicate this on their submission(s).

Submission Guidelines for paper and panel proposals:

Include title(s), abstract(s) (maximum 250 words), and contact information for each participant.Outline, as relevant, how your paper or panel will fit with the convention theme.Authors with papers submitted as part of a panel proposal or as a paper proposal that wish to be considered for Top Paper or Top Student Paper must send the completed paper to the convention planner by May 6, 2022.

Submission guidelines for manuscripts eligible for MEA award submissions:

Manuscripts should be 4,000–6,000 words (approximately 15 to 25 double-spaced pages)Include a cover page with your institutional affiliation and other contact information.Include an abstract (maximum 150 words).Please visit https://media-ecology.org for more information about the Media Ecology Association, our annual convention, and our publication profile

Philadelphia, PA
April 7-9, 2022For additional information about the upcoming convention, please visit ECA’s website http://www.ecasite.org/.

MEA @ ICA 2022

The 72nd Annual ICA Conference theme One World, One Network‽ invites reimagining communication scholarship on globalization and networks. The use of the interrobang glyph – a superposition of the exclamation and question punctuation marks – seeks to simultaneously celebrate and problematize the “one-ness” in the theme. At this year’s 72nd annual ICA conference, to be held in Paris, France on May 26–30, 2022 (theme: “One World, One Network‽”), the MEA is sponsoring the following panel:
Title: “Networking Our Way Toward a World of Sanity”
Chair: Thom Gencarelli, Manhattan College

“All Things to All People: The Overlapping Boundaries of the Networked Self”
Margaret Cassidy, Adelphi University
In an age characterized by extensive use of social media for interaction among friends, family, coworkers, and total strangers, people are experiencing a complicated degree of overlapping and intertwining relationships and roles. The movement of many life activities online during the COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated this condition, as our homes became all places in one – home, office, fitness center, doctor’s office, therapist’s couch, house of worship – and it became difficult or impossible to keep those roles and those audiences separate from one another. The core thinkers and theories of media ecology provide an ideal lens through which to examine the challenges posed by the hyper-networked pandemic era. This paper will draw on such media ecology scholars as Erving Goffman, George Herbert Mead, Edward Hall, and Sherry Turkle to explore the challenges of managing overlapping identities.

“Facebook, the Metaverse, and the Internet as Central Nervous System”
Thom Gencarelli, Manhattan College
On the day I sit to write this abstract, Facebook has just officially announced their plan to rebrand and rename the company – as, in the words of Mark Zuckerberg, “over the next several years, we will effectively transition from people seeing us as primarily being a social media company to being a metaverse company.” The obvious question from this becomes: “What is this thing Zuckerberg calls the metaverse?” Is it simply Facebook’s latest attempt to maintain its power and wealth as one of the most prominent companies on our venture/adventure toward Web 3.0? Is it a simply a ploy to regain control of the company’s narrative and the narrative about the company after so much scandal? Is it the vision of a majority and controller shareholder who is himself asocial? Or is it, in virtual terms, something real?At a conference that asks us to consider the idea and possibility of one world, one network, this paper addresses Facebook/Zuckerberg’s metaverse as one possibility for such a network – with all of the dystopian consequence it might entail.

“Between a Korzybskian Non-Allness and a McLuhan Allatonceness: The Rebirth of Irony in a Post-Covid Epoch”
Adeena Karasick, Pratt Institute

On July 26, 2021, The New York Times declared that due to the functioning of our media and how this affects our socio-political aesthetics – (and I would add, coupled with recent historic events, Black Lives Matter, #MeToo, Trumpism and Covid) – riddled in contradiction and chaos, we are now craving a sense of empathy, connectedness, catharsis, and as such have entered into a new socio-aesthetic epoch marked by the [death] of irony. It alleged that because of the Internet; and its inability to adequately communicate tone, Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, Insta, urge an us vs. them attitude; a passionate uplifting OR vehement condemnation. The article further asserts that because media (particularly TV and film) are no longer being predominantly created by white male heroes (who historically were in power for a very long time and had the luxury of exploring nuanced sides of expression), there is no more room for irony, but instead a blanket celebration of all who have been disenfranchised, silenced or misrepresented. And as such, irony has taken a back seat, and contemporary art is marked by sincerity, sentimentality, affect.

If irony functions through a sense of detachment, and empathy proffers a sense of connection, these modes of communication seem oppositional, dichotomous and irreconcilable. However, read through a Korzybskian model of “a consciousness of abstraction,” and with reference to Plato, Aristotle, Freud, Hobbes, Kant, Kierkegaard, and McLuhan, I would like to posit that through a study of the way irony functions in an “allatonceness” of both connection and disconnection, empathy and detachment, it can offer a discursive model needed for this present moment. Not a non-ironic, over-sentimentalized discourse which glosses over darkness, tragedy, and discomfort but rather one that is both distancing, subversive and full of affect, and thereby underscores how modes of complex communicative strategies problematize the foundations of systemic infrastructures, crucial for transformation and change.“One World, One Global Village”

María Teresa Nicolás, Universidad Panamericana, Campus México
Laura Trujillo Liñán, Universidad Panamericana, Campus México

Marshall McLuhan claimed that media and technology had a structural impact on society. This is due to the fact that as they are expressions of the human being; they are essentially new types of language through which humans extends their senses. In this paper we will present the case of Coursera, which, through its virtual courses, has tried to standardize and unify education throughout the world, thus achieving, despite isolation, the unity of one world, one global village.
“Timespace and the Study of Media Environments”

Lance Strate, Fordham University

Media ecology is concerned with three overarching types of environments: the symbolic, the technological, and the biophysical. The concepts of space and time are in large part products of culture, which is to say concepts emerging out of our symbolic and technological environments. As our symbolic and technological environments differ, from one place and era to another, so do our concepts of space and time. Beyond these differences, however, Einsteinian physics posits the existence of the unified field of spacetime as the ultimate environment of the universe. This view privileges the concept of space, however, to the extent that it essentially eliminates the concept of time, reducing it to a form, or dimension, of space. This can be understood as using space as a metaphor for time, a conceptualization that has its origins in various forms of timekeeping dating back to antiquity. An alternative view would be to reverse the relationship between space and time, and substitute the idea of timespace, and space as a function of time. Support for this alternate conceptualization can be found in our contemporary media environment, specifically in the concepts of cyberspace and cybertime.
See https://www.icahdq.org/page/ICA2022 and/or contact the MEA’s ICA liaison Thom Gencarelli at thom.gencarelli@manhattan.edu for more details.MEA MEMBER ACHIEVEMENTS
MEA Executive Board member Julia M. Hildebrand was invited to give a keynote at the interdisciplinary conference titled «Drones in Society: A New Visual Aesthetic» hosted by the University of Sheffield (UK) this September.

More information about the event is here: https://visualsociety.net/conference/
CALL FOR NEWSLETTER CONTENTTo submit your news to In Medias Res, the official monthly newsletter of the Media Ecology Association, members can click here for the submission form.

We are looking for news that is relevant to the members of MEA. This might include member achievements (i.e., journal publications, books, creative works, etc.), awards received, upcoming relevant conferences, recent books that MEA members should be aware of, web content that might interest MEA members, news about upcoming EME issues, calls for submissions, etc. 

The deadline for submissions to be included in the next month’s newsletter is the 28th of every month at 5pm EST.

Virtual Coffee with a Media Ecologist

Are you interested in media ecology and have some questions about it? Are you working on a study related to media ecology and searching for advice? Are you an instructor looking for a media ecology expert to invite as a virtual guest speaker to one of your classes?Get in touch with us! We are happy to schedule a “virtual coffee” appointment with you. Simply fill out the form below to set up a short call or virtual meeting with a scholar from the MEA.The format is open to all. We especially encourage students and early-career scholars interested in media ecology to get in touch with us.

Do you have a background in media ecology and would like to volunteer for virtual coffee meetings with those looking to learn more about it? Send an email to Julia M. Hildebrand.
Arrange a Virtual Coffee appointment on our website

Donate to MEA through AmazonSmile
When you order through AmazonSmile, the AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the purchase price of eligible products to the charitable organization of your choice.»To use it, go to smile.amazon.com and sign in as you usually do. Directly under the search bar, you will find a pull-down for supported charities. Search for and select Media Ecology Association.

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