Media and Communication is an international peer-reviewed open access journal dedicated to a wide variety of basic and applied research in communication and its related fields.

Open Access Journal | ISSN: 2183-2439

With our plurithematic issues we intended to draw the attention of researchers, policy-makers, scientists and the general public to some of the topics of highest relevance. Scholars interested in guest editing a thematic issue of Media and Communication are kindly invited to contact the Editorial Office of the journal (mac@cogitatiopress.com).

Published Thematic Issues

Published issues are available here.

Upcoming Issues


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Volume 9, Issue 4

Title:
Ten Years after the Arab Uprisings: Beyond Media and Liberation


Editor(s):
Hanan Badr (Cairo University, Egypt) and Lena-Maria Möller (University of Leipzig, Germany / Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law, Germany)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 December 2020
Submission of Full Papers: 15-30 April 2021
Publication of the Issue: October/December 2021

Information:

The Arab Uprisings in 2011 were an exceptional moment in the MENA region: they shattered stagnation paradigms and introduced dynamism as a lens of analysis, as also proven by the second wave of protests in 2019. Media are crucial in such disruptive and self-reflective processes. Initial research on media and communication and the Arab Uprisings, which quickly subdued, highlighted the role of (social) media and mobilization, attributing to digital media a central role in the public’s empowerment and in the evasion to censorship through the networked public sphere. Scholarship did not only overemphasize the technology; it reconstructed the Arab Uprisings from a predominantly Euro- and US-centric perspective (i.e. democratization, security concerns and economic consequences). It is important to understand how media and journalism are relevant to the post-Arab Spring transformation phase.

This thematic issue invites scholars to scrutinize media within their societal, cultural and political interdependencies, beyond techno-deterministic logics, retracing interactions and negotiation processes between media, society and politics. It will develop our understanding on how media engaged with, reconsidered and re-articulated voices amid a turbulent transformation beyond the mobilization moment.

Revisiting media and the Arab Uprisings after ten years encourages critical-reflective articles and interdisciplinary modes of analysis that pay attention to both old and new media. Lines of inquiry can include, but are not limited to:

- Patterns of agency of professional and non-professional actors;
- Negotiation processes during transformation in media policies;
- Reconstruction of media discourses;
- Representation, framing and articulation of actors, shifts in structures in the media;
- Subtle dynamics of power struggles in hybrid media systems;
- Actors’ media use for defiance, coping, resistance or survival.

Contributions from the Global South are particularly welcome, to develop theorizing from (and not about) the Global South. This not only to expand the analysis beyond the Global North but also to reconstruct the disruptions while challenging normative models of media systems (Gumede, 2020).


Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal’s instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here).


Open Access:
Accepted papers will be granted Open Access and Editing fees after the peer-review and pending final budgetary approval by the Arab–German Young Academy of Sciences and Humanities (agya.info).

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Volume 9, Issue 4

Title:
Algorithmic Systems in the Digital Society


Editor(s):
Sanne Kruikemeier (University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands), Sophie Boerman (University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands) and Nadine Bol (Tilburg University, The Netherlands)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 September 2020
Submission of Full Papers: 15-31 January 2021
Publication of the Issue: July/September 2021

Information:

Algorithms and Artificial Intelligence (AI) have changed communication delivery modes in society. This is especially noticed by a shift from “mass communication” to increasingly more “personalized” and “automated” communication. For instance, by using a vast amount of data, communicators can increasingly personalize (match messages to characteristics of an individual) and target (send these matched messages to specific people) their messages. As a consequence, algorithms may increasingly be used for automated decision making. This means that data-driven technologies are used to make decision about our life, without the interference of humans. This development instigated a range of new scientific questions concerning the usage of, exposure to, and consequences of algorithms on our online and offline behavior. For instance, it remains the questions how these technological developments influence us to buy, vote, and change our health behavior.

This thematic issue will serve scholars who are interested in the controversies related to algorithmic influence in the digital society. Scholarship within this thematic issue will focus on how the use of algorithms have changed communication in various contexts, such as advertising, health communication, political communication, and journalism. Topics include, but are not limited to, online behavioral advertising or targeted advertising, tailored health communication, automated journalism, political microtargeting, news recommender systems, filter bubbles, automated decision making, and chatbots.

In sum, this thematic issue will focus on the impact of algorithmic-driven content on both an individual and societal level, and will discuss the benefits and potential risks associated with algorithms. These may include the discussion of efficient and relevant content selection as well as privacy issues and other ethical considerations of algorithms. We are also interested in the technical aspects and big data analysis concerning personalization and targeting. For this thematic issue, we encourage scholars to engage with the suggested topics mentioned with both theoretical and empirical contributions. We are also interested in review and/or meta-analytical papers.


Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal's instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here). When submitting their abstracts, authors are also asked to confirm that they are aware that Media and Communication is an open access journal with a publishing fee if the article is accepted for publication after peer-review (corresponding authors affiliated with our institutional members do not incur this fee).


Open Access:
The journal has an article publication fee to cover its costs and guarantee that the article can be accessed free of charge by any reader, anywhere in the world, regardless of affiliation. We defend that authors should not have to personally pay this fee and advise them to check with their institutions if funds are available to cover open access publication fees. Institutions can also join Cogitatio’s Membership Program at a very affordable rate and enable all affiliated authors to publish without incurring any fees. Further information about the journal’s open access charges and institutional members can be found here.

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Volume 10, Issue 1

Title:
New Narratives for New Consumers: Influencers and the Millennial and Centennial Generations


Editor(s):
Luis M. Romero-Rodríguez (Rey Juan Carlos University, Spain), Santiago Tejedor (Autonomous University of Barcelona, Spain) and Inmaculada Berlanga (International University of La Rioja, Spain)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 March 2021
Submission of Full Papers: 15-31 July 2021
Publication of the Issue: January/March 2022

Information:

The growth and popularization of the Internet, together with the gradual reduction of the digital divide, have brought about new habits in the use and consumption of media and platforms. These changes, besides generating an ecosystem in continuous ‘mediamorphosis’ (Aguaded & Romero-Rodríguez, 2015), are making new phenomena and narratives appear in the digital sphere.

In particular, the younger generations (millennials and centennials), also called ‘digital natives’ (Bennet et al., 2008; Prensky, 2001), have been the protagonists of this new media dynamic, in which the audience is both producer and broadcaster of content through social networks, giving birth to the ‘digital prosumer’ (Ritzer et al., 2012). In this sense, platforms such as YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, Tik Tok, among others, have become collaborative channels with new personalities, away from the mainstream, which has a significant influence on the opinions, customs, habits, and preferences of the new generations (Brown, 2016). It is no secret that specific channels on YouTube, Instagram (ITGV), or Tik Tok have more subscribers than the combined audience of many conventional media (i.e., PewDiePie, 100 MM; Cocomelon, 72,5 MM; 5-Minute Crafts, 64,2 MM). This has been a potent vector of innovation in communication, forcing even the conventional media (newspapers, radio, TV, cinema) to bet on these types of channels and narratives to survive.

This thematic issue of Media and Communication invites scholars to examine the changes in narratives that have resulted from the emergence of these digital channels as a function of their impact on the younger generation. It also aims to explore in-depth the contents and languages used by the ‘digital influencers’ in their channels, in the search for the keys to their communication success. Both empirical and theoretical manuscripts; quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods approaches; single-country and comparative research; and historical and contemporary inquiries are welcome. Possible topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Profiles and typologies of the channels of the ‘digital influencers’;
  • Digital channel content and speech analysis (such as YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, Tik Tok);
  • Professional routines and models of the ‘digital influencers’;
  • Use and consumption habits of millennial and centennial generations;
  • Origins and historical evolution of the ‘digital influencers’;
  • Levels of media competence of ‘digital influencers’;
  • Social Media Analysis of ‘digital influencers’ channels.

Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal’s instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here). When submitting their abstracts, authors are also asked to confirm that they are aware that Media and Communication is an open access journal with a publishing fee if the article is accepted for publication after peer-review (corresponding authors affiliated with our institutional members do not incur this fee).


Open Access:
The journal has an article publication fee to cover its costs and guarantee that the article can be accessed free of charge by any reader, anywhere in the world, regardless of affiliation. We defend that authors should not have to personally pay this fee and advise them to check with their institutions if funds are available to cover open access publication fees. Institutions can also join Cogitatio’s Membership Program at a very affordable rate and enable all affiliated authors to publish without incurring any fees. Further information about the journal’s open access charges and institutional members can be found here.

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Volume 10, Issue 1

Title:
New Forms of Media Work and its Organizational and Institutional Conditions


Editor(s):
Salla-Maaria Laaksonen (University of Helsinki, Finland) and Mikko Villi (University of Jyväskylä, Finland)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 December 2020
Submission of Full Papers: 15-30 April 2021
Publication of the Issue: October/December 2021

Information:
The thematic issue explores the widening scope of media work and the institutional and organizational conditions that support new forms of media work. The media industry has undergone significant economic, structural, and technological changes during the past few decades, including changing patterns of ownership and digitalization of media production, distribution, and consumption. Media work has been affected, for example, by the emergence of new digital players and changes in consumers’ media behaviour (Villi & Picard, 2019). The inclusion of social media in media work patterns (Nielsen & Ganter, 2018) and other digital platform-centric practices are emerging as a response to the new, digitalized media environment. As a result of increasing competition, media organizations need to consider strategic communication and branding activities (e.g., Laaksonen et al., 2019; Malmelin & Moisander, 2014). These factors among many others have influenced the ways of working and content of work in the media as well as the organizational dynamics in media organizations.

The changes give rise to new forms of work in the media and also to media work in organizations in other fields. Media work, as defined by Deuze (2007), refers to planning, producing, and marketing media contents, products, services, and brands within media organizations. Media work is not limited to journalistic work but consists also of other activities undertaken by media professionals aimed at advancing the success of media products and services (Malmelin & Villi, 2017). In addition, forms of media work are also emerging in other industries, for example, in various organizations who aim for professional, media-like content production as a part of their communication strategy, or communications agencies who produce communication and marketing content for their customers. Further, the increasing significance of public social media and the demands for organizational openness and dialogue (e.g., Albu & Flyverbom, 2016) require media skills from nearly all employees.

For this issue, we invite theoretical and empirical papers that study the changing nature of media work as well as the new institutional environments for media work from different perspectives, including but not limited to:

  • New professional roles and responsibilities emerging inside the media industry;
  • Theoretical and conceptual development of media work in the social media era;
  • Institutional responses to environmental changes in media organizations;
  • Media work in entrepreneurial media outlets;
  • Practices of media work in organizations in other fields than the media (e.g., corporate media, public organization media);
  • Mixing of strategic communications and journalistic work;
  • Organizational communication approaches to media work, such as internal mediated practices and their functions in organizations.

Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal's instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here). When submitting their abstracts, authors are also asked to confirm that they are aware that Media and Communication is an open access journal with a publishing fee if the article is accepted for publication after peer-review (corresponding authors affiliated with our institutional members do not incur this fee).


Open Access:
The journal has an article publication fee to cover its costs and guarantee that the article can be accessed free of charge by any reader, anywhere in the world, regardless of affiliation. We defend that authors should not have to personally pay this fee and advise them to check with their institutions if funds are available to cover open access publication fees. Institutions can also join Cogitatio’s Membership Program at a very affordable rate and enable all affiliated authors to publish without incurring any fees. Further information about the journal’s open access charges and institutional members can be found here.

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Volume 10, Issue 1

Title:
Digital Child and Adulthood: Risks, Opportunities, and Challenges


Editor(s):
Claudia Riesmeyer (LMU Munich, Germany), Arne Freya Zillich (Film University Babelsberg KONRAD WOLF, Germany) and Thorsten Naab (German Youth Institute, Germany)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 March 2021
Submission of Full Papers: 15-31 July 2021
Publication of the Issue: January/March 2022

Information:

Childhood and adolescence are today characterized by digitalization which becomes apparent at least in three developments: First, children grow up in a world in which the use of digital media is increasingly establishing itself as a cultural practice in families, educational institutions, and among peers. Furthermore, they become the target of media education efforts: Various agents guide children and young people to a responsible and reflective use of media as well as set social standards of media use and practice. Finally, through their actions, both active and passive, children and adolescents leave numerous traces of their own in the digital world. These are not only followed by their family and friends, but also by companies, activists, and researchers.

This thematic issue deals with the risks, opportunities, and challenges that digitalization poses for childhood and adolescence. Possible topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Digital environment: What are the characteristics of digital media use by children and adolescents? What role does the family background play (e.g., socio economic status, migration, crisis communication within families)? How does the increasing digitalization affect childrens’ and adolescents’ relations to their peers? How do media availability and media practices differ among children and adolescents in different cultural contexts (within a region and globally)?
  • Skills: Which factors and processes interlock in a successful self-socialization of competent media use? What are the roles and responsibilities of different actors, such as parents, teachers, siblings, friends, or influencers? What dangers do children and adolescents face online, what opportunities do they acknowledge?
  • Traces: Are children and adolescents aware of the traces they leave online and how do they deal with them? How does the digital footprint of children change in the course of their childhood and youth? Which digital traces are left by peers and relatives about children and adolescents?
  • Research ethics: What are the current challenges facing digital child and youth research? How can it collect data in a research-ethically correct way (e.g., questioning parents as a proxy for children)?

Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal's instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here). When submitting their abstracts, authors are also asked to confirm that they are aware that Media and Communication is an open access journal with a publishing fee if the article is accepted for publication after peer-review (corresponding authors affiliated with our institutional members do not incur this fee).


Open Access:
The journal has an article publication fee to cover its costs and guarantee that the article can be accessed free of charge by any reader, anywhere in the world, regardless of affiliation. We defend that authors should not have to personally pay this fee and advise them to check with their institutions if funds are available to cover open access publication fees. Institutions can also join Cogitatio's Membership Program at a very affordable rate and enable all affiliated authors to publish without incurring any fees. Further information about the journal's open access charges and institutional members can be found here.

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Volume 10, Issue 2

Title:
Networks and Organizing Processes in Online Social Media


Editor(s):
Seungyoon Lee (Purdue University, USA)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 June 2021
Submission of Full Papers: 15-30 October 2021
Publication of the Issue: April/June 2022

Information:
The potential for social interaction on online social media is immense. It presents unprecedented opportunities and challenges in the organizing processes of various social phenomena such as information exchange, knowledge creation, collective action, and post-disaster resource mobilization. Recent examples show that the phenomena observed on a range of social media platforms sometimes support and sometimes defy the traditional theories of organizing. On one hand, the role of centralized individuals and organizations is still highlighted, and factors such as status, prestige, and geographic co-location continue to explain the organizing processes in online space. On the other hand, online social organizing allows successful mobilization and collaboration without a pre-established structure of coordination. Individuals collaborate toward goals without tangible incentives, across physical and social boundaries, and through improvisation of new ties from previously weak or nonexistent relationships. These observations suggest that there are unique structures of interaction that need to be understood in addition to the characteristics of participants and the channels themselves. This thematic issue solicits studies that examine the structure of networks on social media—e.g., who communicates with whom, who collaborates with whom, who forms groups with whom, and others—in order to provide critical insights into the ways in which social interaction shapes emergent outcomes. The issue welcomes contributions for understanding networked patterns of interaction from small to large scales, and from a range of theoretical and methodological perspectives.


Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal's instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here). When submitting their abstracts, authors are also asked to confirm that they are aware that Media and Communication is an open access journal with a publishing fee if the article is accepted for publication after peer-review (corresponding authors affiliated with our institutional members do not incur this fee).


Open Access:
The journal has an article publication fee to cover its costs and guarantee that the article can be accessed free of charge by any reader, anywhere in the world, regardless of affiliation. We defend that authors should not have to personally pay this fee and advise them to check with their institutions if funds are available to cover open access publication fees. Institutions can also join Cogitatio's Membership Program at a very affordable rate and enable all affiliated authors to publish without incurring any fees. Further information about the journal's open access charges and institutional members can be found here.

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Volume 10, Issue 2

Title:
Media and Migration in the Covid-19 Pandemic: Discourses, Policies and Practices in Times of Crisis


Editor(s):
Vasiliki Tsagkroni (Leiden University, The Netherlands), Amanda Alencar (Erasmus University Rotterdam, The Netherlands) and Dimitris Skleparis (Newcastle University, UK)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 June 2021
Submission of Full Papers: 15-30 October 2021
Publication of the Issue: April/June 2022

Information:

Discourses of fear and war-like metaphors around the current coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic have paved the way for the introduction of unprecedented mobility restrictions at the local, national, and global level. During times of crisis, the media are key in contributing to the legitimation of measures and in providing communities access to critical information. Against this background, when it comes to displaced persons, it is important to highlight barriers related to digital accessibility and literacies, as well as associated risks of technology use (e.g., misinformation, privacy issues, and surveillance). These barriers might exacerbate their vulnerabilities and existing condition, as well as render them invisible as a community. They might also transform and challenge the communication and relations with their transnational families.

This call for papers invites reflective contributions that bring together digital infrastructures and media through the spectre of migration during the Covid-19 crisis. The connection of media and migration provides a critical lens to think through themes of borders, migrants, integration, governance, and representation associated with this pandemic crisis. Some of the themes this thematic issue is open to consider include:

  • The role of mediated processes and discourses around the immediate and long-term effects of the Covid-19 on migrants;
  • The role of digital and social media in facilitating solidarity movements towards migrant groups, or conversely, anti-immigrant mobilisations amid the pandemic;
  • The mediatised consequences of the Covid-19 for migratory movements;
  • The opportunities and constraints of digital technologies in migrant settlement, integration, and rights protection amid the pandemic;
  • The role of media and technologies in risk and crisis management;
  • The opportunities and challenges of using digital technologies to conduct research on migrant populations during a global pandemic;
  • The impact of media on transnational family relations and communications within the context of limited global mobility.

Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal's instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here). When submitting their abstracts, authors are also asked to confirm that they are aware that Media and Communication is an open access journal with a publishing fee if the article is accepted for publication after peer-review (corresponding authors affiliated with our institutional members do not incur this fee).


Open Access:
The journal has an article publication fee to cover its costs and guarantee that the article can be accessed free of charge by any reader, anywhere in the world, regardless of affiliation. We defend that authors should not have to personally pay this fee and advise them to check with their institutions if funds are available to cover open access publication fees. Institutions can also join Cogitatio's Membership Program at a very affordable rate and enable all affiliated authors to publish without incurring any fees. Further information about the journal's open access charges and institutional members can be found here.

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Volume 10, Issue 2

Title:
Impact of Social Media on Social Cohesion


Editor(s):
Stefan Stieglitz (University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany) and Björn Ross (University of Edinburgh, Scotland)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 June 2021
Submission of Full Papers: 15-30 October 2021
Publication of the Issue: April/June 2022

Information:

In the 21st century, social media such as Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, Instagram, and WhatsApp are used by the majority of the population in many countries. Social media enables users to create and share content and to participate in social networking. Mass media have also entered the digital age and play an active role on social media. Within seconds, any content can be circulated among thousands of people. Due to the large amount of information and the variety of data sources, it has become increasingly difficult for citizens to decide about the trustworthiness of social media content.

In times of global crises such as the Coronavirus pandemic, climate change, or financial crises, societies are in danger of losing stability and social cohesion. The rise of fake accounts, misinformation, social bots, and hidden attempts of manipulation pose additional challenges for democratic societies. On the other hand, social media can help to foster communication among citizens and reinforce shared feelings of identity (e.g., in Europe). It can also enable citizens to communicate across borders and strengthen shared ideologies.

For this thematic issue, we seek articles that contribute to this active area of research. Examples of topics include:

  • Social media as an enabler of, or barrier to, social cohesion;
  • Transnational social movements on social media;
  • Cross-border communication on social media;
  • Participation and representation of minorities in social media—inclusiveness of social media;
  • Social media as a contributor to social equality or inequality;
  • Impact of social media misinformation and disinformation on social cohesion;
  • Impact of hate and abusive speech (e.g., misogyny, racism) on social cohesion;
  • Crisis communication in social media.

Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal's instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here). When submitting their abstracts, authors are also asked to confirm that they are aware that Media and Communication is an open access journal with a publishing fee if the article is accepted for publication after peer-review (corresponding authors affiliated with our institutional members do not incur this fee).


Open Access:
The journal has an article publication fee to cover its costs and guarantee that the article can be accessed free of charge by any reader, anywhere in the world, regardless of affiliation. We defend that authors should not have to personally pay this fee and advise them to check with their institutions if funds are available to cover open access publication fees. Institutions can also join Cogitatio's Membership Program at a very affordable rate and enable all affiliated authors to publish without incurring any fees. Further information about the journal's open access charges and institutional members can be found here.

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Volume 10, Issue 3

Title:
At the Intersections of Mobile Online and Offline Spaces: Reflections on Methods, Practices, and Ethics


Editor(s):
Katja Kaufmann (University of Innsbruck, Austria) and Monika Palmberger (University of Vienna, Austria)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 September 2021
Submission of Full Papers: 15-31 January 2022
Publication of the Issue: July/September 2022

Information:
This thematic issue seeks to advance the methodological scholarship and cross-disciplinary exchange on information and communication technologies (ICTs) and their embeddedness in everyday practices across mobile online and offline spaces. ICTs and mobile media have become ubiquitous in the lives of many people, introducing new forms of communication, and affecting experiences of temporality and space and ultimately understandings of sociality and relationships. Mobile media technologies such as smartphones, now commonplace companions in numerous pockets, place users in digital (online) as well as physical (offline) spaces in novel ways, thus opening up new environments of affordances. In everyday life these mobile online and offline spaces are deeply interwoven in manifold ways. Practices, experiences, meanings and expectations are being negotiated across these spaces, while simultaneously bound by the spaces’ respective logics and limitations, leading in turn to new interrelations as well as contradictions. The intersections of online and offline spaces in the use of mobile media technologies have become an inherent aspect of people’s lives—and hence an intriguing new site for social research. The mobile, interrelating, yet not converging, nature of online and offline spaces, however, poses significant method(odolog)ical challenges. Researchers in the field of media and communication and beyond are confronted with such questions as: What are appropriate designs to study (at) these intersections? How can methods do justice to the volatility and fluidity of practices and experiences across online and offline spaces? In what ways can elaborated mixed and multi-method designs capture complexity adequately without the researchers losing sight of the specifics? How can researchers overcome the potential additivity in their methodical approaches and thus acknowledge that intersecting online and offline spaces are more than the sum of their separate parts? And what are the ethical and practical implications for the parties involved?


Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal's instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here). When submitting their abstracts, authors are also asked to confirm that they are aware that Media and Communication is an open access journal with a publishing fee if the article is accepted for publication after peer-review (corresponding authors affiliated with our institutional members do not incur this fee).


Open Access:
The journal has an article publication fee to cover its costs and guarantee that the article can be accessed free of charge by any reader, anywhere in the world, regardless of affiliation. We defend that authors should not have to personally pay this fee and advise them to check with their institutions if funds are available to cover open access publication fees. Institutions can also join Cogitatio's Membership Program at a very affordable rate and enable all affiliated authors to publish without incurring any fees. Further information about the journal's open access charges and institutional members can be found here.

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Volume 10, Issue 3

Title:
Journalism, Activism, and Social Media: Exploring the Shifts in Journalistic Roles, Performance and Interconnectedness


Editor(s):
Peter Maurer (Trier University, Germany) and Christian Nuernbergk (Trier University, Germany)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 September 2021
Submission of Full Papers: 15-31 January 2022
Publication of the Issue: July/September 2022

Information:

Journalists perform in an increasingly networked, yet politically fragmented context. Both conditions may affect the role conception of news professionals, the type of information and the style of reporting they provide to the public as well as their relationship and interaction modes with sources, publics and critics. Social media platforms afford journalists opportunities to voice views in public channels outside their media outlets. Thus, journalists develop individual political profiles and may engage themselves in “interpretive communities” emerging around political events (Zelizer, 1993).

In digital spaces, journalists are also ‘influencers’ given their visibility and may serve as hubs and potential amplifiers in online networks. The presence of journalists on platforms such as Twitter allows citizens, sources, activists and pressure groups to engage with them, publicly criticize them and to intrude into the formerly shielded environment of journalists and sources. In this vein, ubiquitous attempts of manipulating or influencing public opinion occur. Likewise, the affordances of social media platforms bring the network structure between journalists and political actors more into the open and provide new opportunities for research into relationships, group dynamics and power. Moreover, journalism now operates in the midst of a confrontation of beliefs and political discourses, epitomized for example in the struggle between populist and ‘mainstream’ parties. In the wake of these political fights, journalists may abandon their observer role and become advocates of a cause. Activists, pressure groups and parties try to hijack journalism for their goals. At the same time, the discourse around the appropriate norms of journalism is intensifying as well.

This thematic issue of Media and Communication seeks contributions that examine and explore potential shifts or trends in journalistic beliefs, outputs and interactions given these transformations. We welcome contributions from a wide range of theoretical and methodological approaches in the intersection of journalism studies and (digital) political communication.


Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal's instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here). When submitting their abstracts, authors are also asked to confirm that they are aware that Media and Communication is an open access journal with a publishing fee if the article is accepted for publication after peer-review (corresponding authors affiliated with our institutional members do not incur this fee).


Open Access:
The journal has an article publication fee to cover its costs and guarantee that the article can be accessed free of charge by any reader, anywhere in the world, regardless of affiliation. We defend that authors should not have to personally pay this fee and advise them to check with their institutions if funds are available to cover open access publication fees. Institutions can also join Cogitatio's Membership Program at a very affordable rate and enable all affiliated authors to publish without incurring any fees. Further information about the journal's open access charges and institutional members can be found here.

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Volume 10, Issue 3

Title:
Enlightening Confusion: How Contradictory Findings Help Mitigate Problematic Trends in Digital Democracies


Editor(s):
Cornelia Mothes (Macromedia University of Applied Sciences, Germany) and Jakob Ohme (University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 September 2021
Submission of Full Papers: 15-31 January 2022
Publication of the Issue: July/September 2022

Information:

Public discourse in digital democracies is facing growing challenges, with two main trends giving particular cause for concern, but at the same time leading to ongoing debates about their actual severity. A first trend relates to evidence showing that citizens get involved in political debates in a way that is becoming increasingly emotional and irrational. This trend is often related to concepts such as affective polarization, confirmation bias, echo chambers, filter bubbles, cognitive misperception, fake news, incivility or hate speech—all of which pointing into the direction of a gradually evolving post-truth society, which would severely compromise a shared knowledge base and the ability to reach consensus in society. A second trend relates to a concurrently growing share of citizens who often no longer engage with public affairs at all—at least not beyond headlines and teasers—but still feel subjectively well informed. This second trend refers to concepts such as news fatigue, political alienation, news snacking or incidental exposure in high-choice media environments, and is crucially related to the first trend in that it potentially reinforces it by leaving the political stage to the most emotionally involved, less open-minded participants in public discourse.

Although many studies have examined these trends, both developments bear a complexity that often makes it difficult for research to reconcile contradictory findings. Yet, these inconsistencies in empirical results are probably the most important parameters not only for advancing our understanding of these developments, but also for finding answers to the question of how such problematic trends could be counteracted, as they may point to essential factors that moderate—and thus potentially mitigate—detrimental developments.

This thematic issue therefore invites contributions from a wide range of perspectives (theoretical, methodological, empirical) looking at contradictory patterns and potential moderators in media effects research that may help clarify the overall severity of problematic trends in digital democracies, or suggest solution-based approaches to alleviating such trends.

Contributions may address (but are not limited to) the question of how contradictory findings can be:
  • Attributed to user differences (e.g., personality, ideology, user patterns, user interests);
  • Traced back to content-related differences (e.g., news topics, journalistic quality, news platforms);
  • Explained by cultural differences (e.g., social/political context, media system, journalistic culture);
  • Caused by differences in methodological approaches to investigating media effects;
  • Used for effective interventions (e.g., in the field of constructive journalism, news/media literacy or self-affirmation).

Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal's instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here). When submitting their abstracts, authors are also asked to confirm that they are aware that Media and Communication is an open access journal with a publishing fee if the article is accepted for publication after peer-review (corresponding authors affiliated with our institutional members do not incur this fee).


Open Access:
The journal has an article publication fee to cover its costs and guarantee that the article can be accessed free of charge by any reader, anywhere in the world, regardless of affiliation. We defend that authors should not have to personally pay this fee and advise them to check with their institutions if funds are available to cover open access publication fees. Institutions can also join Cogitatio's Membership Program at a very affordable rate and enable all affiliated authors to publish without incurring any fees. Further information about the journal's open access charges and institutional members can be found here.

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Volume 10, Issue 4

Title:
Inclusive Media Literacy Education for Diverse Societies


Editor(s):
Çiğdem Bozdağ (University of Groningen, The Netherlands / University of Bremen, Germany), Annamária Neag (Independent Researcher, UK) and Koen Leurs (Utrecht University, The Netherlands)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 December 2021
Submission of Full Papers: 15-30 April 2022
Publication of the Issue: October/December 2022

Information:

The definition of the term “media literacy” has evolved and alternative concepts such as network literacy, information literacy, digital literacy among others have been suggested to capture the dynamics of the changing media environments. Although the terminologies and definitions have changed over time and the different approaches incorporate a variety of perspectives (Koltay, 2011), issues related to diversity, inclusion and intercultural dialogue were not central to media literacy until very recently. To develop a more inclusive approach to media literacy education in our increasingly super-diverse societies and strengthen the diversity of voices and intercultural dialogue in the public arena, inclusive media literacy education should revolve around reflective tools in order to learn how to live with difference. Drawing on black feminist theory, we argue that a critical approach to media literacy education needs to address diversity and differences through an intersectional lens. To promote media justice, inclusive media literacy should acknowledge and provide means to transform how identities and power are shaped through the mediation of intersecting axes of difference including nationality, race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, ability and socioeconomic class.

This thematic issue aims to bring together papers that develop a critical perspective and focus on issues related to media literacy education, differences and diversity. We aim to include conceptual papers as well as empirical studies from different contexts that provide a critical reflection of existing media education practices. The papers can focus on the following topics among others:

  • Media literacy education for intercultural dialogue;
  • Media literacy education for marginalized groups;
  • Critical approaches to media literacy education with a focus on diversity;
  • Media literacy education for migrants and refugees;
  • Decolonizing media literacy education;
  • Media literacy and social inclusion;
  • Participatory methods within media literacy education and research.

Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal's instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here). When submitting their abstracts, authors are also asked to confirm that they are aware that Media and Communication is an open access journal with a publishing fee if the article is accepted for publication after peer-review (corresponding authors affiliated with our institutional members do not incur this fee).


Open Access:
The journal has an article publication fee to cover its costs and guarantee that the article can be accessed free of charge by any reader, anywhere in the world, regardless of affiliation. We defend that authors should not have to personally pay this fee and advise them to check with their institutions if funds are available to cover open access publication fees. Institutions can also join Cogitatio's Membership Program at a very affordable rate and enable all affiliated authors to publish without incurring any fees. Further information about the journal's open access charges and institutional members can be found here.

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Volume 10, Issue 4

Title:
Online Communities and Populism


Editor(s):
Ashley Hinck (Xavier University, USA)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 December 2021
Submission of Full Papers: 15-30 April 2022
Publication of the Issue: October/December 2022

Information:

In recent years, there has been an explosion of populism across the globe. Strains of populism have been taken up by leaders like the United States’ Donald Trump, the United Kingdom’s Boris Johnson, Brazil’s Jair Bolsonaro, India’s Narendra Modi, and Indonesia’s Joko Widodo. While these are some of the most visible instances, populism has also emerged in smaller countries like the Netherlands (Hameleers, 2019) and in the communication of political challengers like Alexey Navalny in Russia (Glazunova, 2020). Populist communication functions as a style, strategy, and ideology that constitutes a “virtuous” people and an enemy of elites who control the system and the status quo (Engesser et al., 2017; Lee, 2006).

Populists are using social media to organize and amplify populist communication (see e.g., Boulianne et al., 2020; Bucy et al., 2020; Hameleers, 2019; Peck, 2020). In an age when citizens are turning to online communities to construct their political values, beliefs, and ideologies (Bennett, 2008; Giddens, 1991; Hinck, 2019), it is not coincidental that many of these populist leaders have been bolstered by large followings of supporters online. This thematic issue examines the role online communities play in contemporary populism—how seemingly untraditional political communities online are influencing national and international politics by developing populist messages and circulating populist media.

Submissions might consider (but are not limited to) to the following:

  • How might online communities provide transnational points of contact, network nodes, or flows of communication between and across nations?
  • How do the social norms and values of online communities provide fertile grounds for populism?
  • How do conspiracy communities, fan communities, and other online communities influence and enable populism?
  • What forms and genres (like memes and deep fakes) define online populism?
  • What communication strategies emerge from online communities to support populist leaders?
  • What are the implications for democracy?

Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal's instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here). When submitting their abstracts, authors are also asked to confirm that they are aware that Media and Communication is an open access journal with a publishing fee if the article is accepted for publication after peer-review (corresponding authors affiliated with our institutional members do not incur this fee).


Open Access:
The journal has an article publication fee to cover its costs and guarantee that the article can be accessed free of charge by any reader, anywhere in the world, regardless of affiliation. We defend that authors should not have to personally pay this fee and advise them to check with their institutions if funds are available to cover open access publication fees. Institutions can also join Cogitatio's Membership Program at a very affordable rate and enable all affiliated authors to publish without incurring any fees. Further information about the journal's open access charges and institutional members can be found here.

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Volume 10, Issue 4

Title:
Protesting While Polarized: Digital Activism in Contentious Times


Editor(s):
Homero Gil de Zúñiga (University of Salamanca, Spain / Pennsylvania State University, USA / Diego Portales University, Chile) and Isabel Inguanzo (University of Salamanca, Spain)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 December 2021
Submission of Full Papers: 15-30 April 2022
Publication of the Issue: October/December 2022

Information:

In light of today’s recent political real changes—a polarized political scenario, and radical voices hogging the public digital sphere—this thematic issue aims at identifying the different strategies of old and new social movements in the extremes of the political debates, in terms of repertoires, frames, audiences, and mobilization of resources.

We therefore welcome papers that deal with the following research questions:

  • How does polarization affect the political opportunity structure in the digital era?
  • Which online protest frames are more successful in an era of polarization?
  • Which repertoires of digital activism are more successful: disruptive or conventional?
  • How do polarized discussions affect online and offline protest?
  • How radicals from different ideological extremes, in a wide variety of issues, are using digital means to support offline protest?
  • Do radical views on politics drive radical means of protest?
  • Can digital resources/infrastructure lower down thresholds to collective action in a polarized era?
  • Has the internet transformed protest from collective action to individual action in an era of polarization?

We hope to build a multidisciplinary and multimethod thematic issue that builds upon previous knowledge from different disciplines such as media and communication, sociology, political science, international relations, social psychology, gender and cultural studies, etc.

Also, we welcome papers relying on different qualitative and quantitative methodologies. Some examples are, although this list is not exhaustive: Content analysis in the blogosphere and social media; quantitative surveys of media users; qualitative comparative analysis to delve into social movements strategies in the digital sphere; social media network analysis; interviews and focus groups with digital activists and other public actors; discourse analysis in alternative new websites; agent based models, experimental designs, etc.

In sum, we encourage papers focus on digital protest and activism drawing from qualitative or quantitative empirical data from any corner of the World.


Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal's instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here). When submitting their abstracts, authors are also asked to confirm that they are aware that Media and Communication is an open access journal with a publishing fee if the article is accepted for publication after peer-review (corresponding authors affiliated with our institutional members do not incur this fee).


Open Access:
The journal has an article publication fee to cover its costs and guarantee that the article can be accessed free of charge by any reader, anywhere in the world, regardless of affiliation. We defend that authors should not have to personally pay this fee and advise them to check with their institutions if funds are available to cover open access publication fees. Institutions can also join Cogitatio's Membership Program at a very affordable rate and enable all affiliated authors to publish without incurring any fees. Further information about the journal's open access charges and institutional members can be found here.

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Volume 11, Issue 1

Title:
Science Communication in the Digital Age: New Actors, Environments and Practices


Editor(s):
Julia Metag (University of Münster, Germany), Florian Wintterlin (University of Münster, Germany) and Kira Klinger (University of Münster, Germany)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 April 2022
Submission of Full Papers: 15-31 July 2022
Publication of the Issue: January/March 2023

Information:

The growing importance of online channels in the dissemination of information has not only affected the political sphere, but also science communication. Science communication online has pluralized and multiplied the amount of scientific information available and the voices who express themselves about scientific issues. The press release by an established institution such as a university is no longer the main communication channel of the scientific system, but at best represents a supplement to the flow of information about science. Online communication offers a platform for a variety of (Pseudo-)scientific communicators due to the low entry barriers. As a result, new actors are entering the stage to talk about science on new channels such as social media. Science journalists communicating via YouTube videos, people with questionable expertise talking about scientific evidence, scientists offering a podcast or projects offering citizens possibilities to experience ‘science in the making’—recent developments made the diversity of science communication online visible and placed it at the center of societal discourse.

The way science communication changed is also reflected in the amount of data that is created for science communication in digital environments. Not only does online science communication create large amounts of data itself (e.g., tweets about climate change) but science communication itself uses data provided by platforms. Science journalists cooperate with data journalists for aggregating data on scientific issues and presenting scientific information in new ways.

Not only actors, channels, and presentation practices have changed and diversified for science communication in the digital world but also the discourses and debates about science. Inaccurate information about scientific topics spreading online, whether distributed strategically or inadvertently, constitutes a problem for science communication even though strategies for inoculation against scientific disinformation have been developed. Hate speech and uncivil discourses may keep scientists from engaging in online debates about their research. At the same time, online debates can be of deliberative nature and the inclusion of different voices can develop scientific research such as in citizen science contexts.

This thematic issue deals with the opportunities and challenges digital environments offer for science communication. It will contribute to a comprehensive understanding of how online environments and practices are shaped by established as well as new actors in science communication.

Contributions may focus on issues including, but not limited to, the following areas:

  • Access to and participation in science communication online (new (pseudo-)scientific actors in science communication, consequences of online communication for established scientific communicators, new forms of participation in science online, role of infrastructure and governance of platforms);
  • Presentation of science online (visualization, use of data);
  • Debates and discourses about science in digital environments (reliability of information, disinformation, deliberation, algorithmization).

Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal's instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here). When submitting their abstracts, authors are also asked to confirm that they are aware that Media and Communication is an open access journal with a publishing fee if the article is accepted for publication after peer-review (corresponding authors affiliated with our institutional members do not incur this fee).


Open Access:
The journal has an article publication fee to cover its costs and guarantee that the article can be accessed free of charge by any reader, anywhere in the world, regardless of affiliation. We defend that authors should not have to personally pay this fee and advise them to check with their institutions if funds are available to cover open access publication fees. Institutions can also join Cogitatio's Membership Program at a very affordable rate and enable all affiliated authors to publish without incurring any fees. Further information about the journal's open access charges and institutional members can be found here.

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Volume 11, Issue 1

Title:
Global Inequalities in the Wake of Covid-19: Gender, Pandemic and Media Gaps


Editor(s):
Margreth Lünenborg (Freie Universität Berlin, Germany), Miriam Siemon (Freie Universität Berlin, Germany), Wolfgang Reißmann (Freie Universität Berlin, Germany)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 January 2022
Submission of Full Papers: 15-31 July 2022
Publication of the Issue: January/March 2023

Information:

The current Covid-19 pandemic reveals and exacerbates inequalities in various ways. Gender inequalities—intertwined with intersectional differences along class, ethnicity or origin—are highly visible. Women, especially those with lower income often working in already precarious conditions, are more affected by job losses. They shoulder the main burden of childcare and homeschooling. Domestic violence is rising during lockdowns. Particularly care work—whether it is frontline medical care work or unpaid care work at home—is highly gendered and thus exacerbates inequalities in this crisis, which are manifested globally in very different forms and intensities.

Legacy and social media around the world cover and perform these issues as much as they conceal them. On the one hand, media have the ability to give those affected a voice and to intervene in public discourse. On the other hand, they reproduce gender stereotypes and imbalances and rely on gendered (infra)structures themselves. We are especially interested in the entanglement between empowering and restricting forms of mediated discourse. As a result and one example, women as experts are heard less in legacy media covering Covid-19.

The thematic issue aims to carve out the entanglements between media and gender imbalances in the wake of Covid-19 in four ways. First, by providing national research and international comparisons which point to global inequalities due to varying trajectories of the pandemic, differing political and media systems, and media cultures. Second, the thematic issue comprises empirical findings both on gendered representations in legacy (news) media as well as on gendered discourse structures and topics in social media platforms like Twitter, YouTube or Instagram and their interdependent emergence. Thirdly, gender is not only investigated as a stand-alone variable, but intersections with precarious working conditions, migration and racial minorities are taken into account as well. Finally, a variety of methods including content analyses as well as computational methods such as network and sentiment analyses are being used and combined in order to meet the challenges that arise through huge social media datasets in hybrid media environments.

Going beyond the commonly addressed question of gender imbalances concerning the representation of experts in legacy media, the thematic issue focuses on how hybrid media systems construct, manage and amplify gender inequalities in the global crisis.


Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal's instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here). When submitting their abstracts, authors are also asked to confirm that they are aware that Media and Communication is an open access journal with a publishing fee if the article is accepted for publication after peer-review (corresponding authors affiliated with our institutional members do not incur this fee).


Open Access:

The journal has an article publication fee to cover its costs and guarantee that the article can be accessed free of charge by any reader, anywhere in the world, regardless of affiliation. We defend that authors should not have to personally pay this fee and advise them to check with their institutions if funds are available to cover open access publication fees. Institutions can also join Cogitatio's Membership Program at a very affordable rate and enable all affiliated authors to publish without incurring any fees. Further information about the journal's open access charges and institutional members can be found here.

The Academic Editors will cover the article publication fees for three submissions. Authors affiliated with institutions that provide no financial support can then make their submissions under a waiver fee request, and preference will be given to researchers from the Global South.


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Volume 11, Issue 1

Title:
Referendum Campaigns in the Digital Age


Editor(s):
Linards Udris (University of Zurich, Switzerland) and Mark Eisenegger (University of Zurich, Switzerland)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 March 2022
Submission of Full Papers: 15-31 July 2022
Publication of the Issue: January/March 2023

Information:

This thematic issue addresses patterns of referendum campaigns in public communication, which increasingly take place in digital and “hybrid” media environments where political actors conduct campaigns through various media channels and citizens receive a large share of political information from traditional and digital media. National referendum campaigns happen in many countries across the world, quite recently for instance in Great Britain, Guinea, Ireland, Italy, Mexico, Slovenia or Switzerland; sub-national referenda are frequent as well (e.g., in the US). At times, referendum campaigns even constitute critical incidents which shape not only policies but also the polity (e.g., independence).

Despite their frequent occurrence and their importance, referendum campaigns—unlike elections—and the role of digital media in particular are understudied phenomena. We currently do not know, for instance, if digital media provide lower entry barriers for political actors and thus award challengers, rather than status-quo actors, better chances than before to launch direct-democratic proposals and shape debates in the run-up to the votes. We do not know either to what extent journalists, when covering referendum campaigns, increasingly rely on social media as sources or proxies of public opinion rather than on direct campaign material from political actors, such as press releases or staged (pseudo-)events, or on public opinion polls. Finally, we do not know enough if digital media environments as such facilitate or rather inhibit referendum campaign debates which can overall be considered substantial, balanced and based on the rational exchange of arguments.

The thematic issue invites scholars to contribute case studies which directly speak to these and related questions, and it welcomes contributions in particular which take a comparative perspective—across traditional and digital channels, across time, across campaigns or across country cases—and provide explanations which factors old and new shape referendum campaigns in the digital age.


Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal's instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here). When submitting their abstracts, authors are also asked to confirm that they are aware that Media and Communication is an open access journal with a publishing fee if the article is accepted for publication after peer-review (corresponding authors affiliated with our institutional members do not incur this fee).


Open Access:
The journal has an article publication fee to cover its costs and guarantee that the article can be accessed free of charge by any reader, anywhere in the world, regardless of affiliation. We defend that authors should not have to personally pay this fee and advise them to check with their institutions if funds are available to cover open access publication fees. Institutions can also join Cogitatio's Membership Program at a very affordable rate and enable all affiliated authors to publish without incurring any fees. Further information about the journal's open access charges and institutional members can be found here.

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Volume 11, Issue 2

Title:
The Many Dimensions of Us: Harnessing Immersive Technologies to Communicate the Human Experience


Editor(s):
Nicholas David Bowman (Texas Tech University, USA) and Jiawei Gong (Texas Tech University, USA)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 June 2022
Submission of Full Papers: 15-30 October 2022
Publication of the Issue: April/June 2023

Information:
Human expression is tethered to and influenced by the tools available to us. From charcoal and berries on dark and cavernous walls to digital pencils and capacitive tablet computers, communication technologies exert profound impact over the stories we tell, both about ourselves and to each other (Schramm, 1988). In our expressions, we leverage our tools to create a simulacrum of our perspective for others. Here, the emergence of virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and mixed reality (MR) technologies represents a profound-yet-burgeoning potential to enhance the fidelity and veracity of these simulacra. Such technologies absorb and arrest the natural human senses (Biocca, 1997). In doing so, they enable us to directly place audiences inside our expressive creations—to feel a sense of presence inside and within the messages themselves (Lombard & Ditton, 1997). Milk (2015) argues that immersive technologies represent the “ultimate empathy machine[s]” that allow for the simulation and presentation of wholly unique perspectives—seen in the work of digital painters such as Anna Zhilyaeva and Emily Edwards and VR filmmakers such as Lynette Wallworth and Alejandro González Iñárritu, among others (including Director Gong). Contrasting these views, research into the psychology of immersive experiences suggests that users can at times struggle to balance the myriad demands of immersive technologies (Bowman, 2018), which can reduce emotional reactions or distance users from the narratives being told (Bowman & Pressgrove, 2020; Ma, 2019). Thus, a potential friction exists between our desire to express ourselves digitally, and our ability to leverage the affordances of immersive technologies (Gaver, 1994) to meet this desire. Our thematic issue invites artists and scholars to share essays, research reports, creative digital works, and other forms of scholarship aimed at fostering a better understanding of the unique expressive potential of immersive digital media.


Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal's instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here). When submitting their abstracts, authors are also asked to confirm that they are aware that Media and Communication is an open access journal with a publishing fee if the article is accepted for publication after peer-review (corresponding authors affiliated with our institutional members do not incur this fee).


Open Access:
The journal has an article publication fee to cover its costs and guarantee that the article can be accessed free of charge by any reader, anywhere in the world, regardless of affiliation. We defend that authors should not have to personally pay this fee and advise them to check with their institutions if funds are available to cover open access publication fees. Institutions can also join Cogitatio's Membership Program at a very affordable rate and enable all affiliated authors to publish without incurring any fees. Further information about the journal's open access charges and institutional members can be found here.

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Volume 11, Issue 2

Title:
A Datafied Society: Data Power, Infrastructures, and Regulations


Editor(s):
Raul Ferrer-Conill (University of Stavanger, Norway / Karlstad University, Sweden) and Helle Sjøvaag (University of Stavanger, Norway)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 June 2022
Submission of Full Papers: 15-30 October 2022
Publication of the Issue: April/June 2023

Information:

Digital infrastructures are technological structures with multiple owners, actors and stakeholders that serve as the backbone for data flows and datafication processes (Parks & Starosielski, 2015). As the power and functions provided by platforms (such as Google, Facebook, Apple, and Microsoft) continue to pervade most aspects of everyday life, governments and advocacy groups have raised concerns about privacy and surveillance fears, threats to freedom of expression, and technological and infrastructure capture (Gillespie, 2018). The datafication and platformization of the digital infrastructure shifts the open, public internet towards the private realm, creating power asymmetries between those who provide data and those who own, trade, and control data, while embracing the logics of aggregation and automation that increasingly negotiate transactions between markets and social entities, informing governance systems, institutions, and public discourse (Kennedy et al., 2015; Van Dijk, et al, 2018). This thematic issue focuses on a) digital media infrastructures and its actors, data structures, markets, and regulations; b) public access to information, data privacy, and the protections of citizens in a datafied society; and c) the policies and regulations for effective, independent media institutions and data sovereignty.

We aim to attract a diverse group of scholars to put together a thematic issue that presents knowledge based on varied theoretical frameworks, broad methodological choices, and diverse empirical cases. We encourage approaches rooted in different disciplines such as: media and communication; telecommunications, infrastructures and materiality; political science; governance and policy; critical studies; gender and cultural studies, etc. This thematic issue welcomes papers that deal with the following topics:

  • Data infrastructures and digital communications ecology;
  • Data power, governance, and sovereignty;
  • The impact of datafication on society;
  • Effects of platforms on media diversity;
  • Regulatory frameworks and data policy;
  • Data ethics, biases, and censorship in freedom of speech;
  • Digital citizenship, data patterns of inclusion and exclusion;
  • Data economy, data sovereignty, and public vs private ownership.

Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal's instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here).


Open Access:
This thematic issue of Media and Communication is sponsored by the Norwegian Research Council (NFR) through the research project “The datafication of communicative power: Towards an independent media policy for Norway’s digital infrastructures” (Project number: 314257). NFR will cover the journal’s article publication fee to cover its costs so that every article in the thematic issue can be accessed free of charge by any reader, anywhere in the world, regardless of affiliation.

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Volume 11, Issue 2

Title:
Fakespotting: (Dis)information Literacy as Key Tool to Defend Democracy


Editor(s):
José Antonio Muñiz-Velázquez (Universidad Loyola Andalucía, Spain) and Claudio Paolucci (University of Bologna, Italy)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 June 2022
Submission of Full Papers: 15-30 October 2022
Publication of the Issue: April/June 2023

Information:

Since what was once called “the audience” is currently able to produce, share, and broadcast information, multiple voices insist that nowadays news literacy is more important than ever. In regard of this, the general label of “fake news”—that usually jumps in when this reality is tackled—hides heterogeneous phenomena such as disinformation, mendacity, mistakes, manipulation, biases, etc.

In this sense, in democratic societies, different institutions must converge in building effective information literacy strategies, even if schools and the formal education system should be the first to act. Regarding the adult population, universities should flag the fight against disinformation, combining its teaching and researching mission with a crucial work of research dissemination, especially from schools of journalism and communication studies. On the other hand, beyond educational or research institutions, also social communication agents (media, social media, advertising, brands communication, entertainment industries, etc.) participate in the shaping of our skills and attitudes.

We invite papers with experimental studies, qualitative and quantitative researches, case studies, or original and high quality theoretical approaches, focused on this broad issue from an interdisciplinary perspective (journalism and communication studies, semiotics, psychology, philosophy, sociology, international relationships, politics, ethics, etc.). Papers can analyze, including but not limited to, the following topics:

  • “Fake news”: definitions and problems;
  • Digital media and information literacy in front of post-truthism, populism, and social polarization;
  • The role of Higher Education against (dis)information disorder and in favor of democracy’s resilience and security;
  • Long Life Learning (LLL) and disinformation skills;
  • Counter disinformation skills in journalism and communication studies;
  • Counter disinformation literacy from positive psychology and communication;
  • The edges of false and post-truth from a semiotics and philosophical perspective;
  • Scientific and critical thinking versus post-truth, pseudoscience, and pseudohistory;
  • Cognitive biases, ethics, moral thinking, and disinformation;
  • The role of media, social media, brands, advertising, and public relations in counter disinformation literacy;
  • Fiction and entertainment as weapons of disinformation and/or counter disinformation.

Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal's instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here). When submitting their abstracts, authors are also asked to confirm that they are aware that Media and Communication is an open access journal with a publishing fee if the article is accepted for publication after peer-review (corresponding authors affiliated with our institutional members do not incur this fee).


Open Access:
The journal has an article publication fee to cover its costs and guarantee that the article can be accessed free of charge by any reader, anywhere in the world, regardless of affiliation. We defend that authors should not have to personally pay this fee and advise them to check with their institutions if funds are available to cover open access publication fees. Institutions can also join Cogitatio's Membership Program at a very affordable rate and enable all affiliated authors to publish without incurring any fees. Further information about the journal's open access charges and institutional members can be found here.

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Volume 11, Issue 3

Title:
Social Media’s Role in Political and Societal Mobilization


Editor(s):
Jörg Haßler (Ludwig Maximilian University Munich, Germany), Melanie Magin (Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway) and Uta Russmann (FHWien der WKW University of Applied Sciences of Management & Communication, Austria)

Submission of Abstracts: 1-15 September 2022
Submission of Full Papers: 15-31 December 2022
Publication of the Issue: July/September 2023

Information:

Driven by digitalization, the way political parties and social movements mobilize partisans and stakeholders has changed substantially. Social media have become one of the main channels to inform, interact with, and mobilize citizens. As a result, the use of communication channels, communication styles, and contents as well as organizational structures of parties and movements themselves have changed. Visual content—like memes or videos—has become more important. New political actors like populist parties, social movements, or so-called new civics have entered the political stage in many countries around the world. Micro-targeting, inauthentic user behavior, and the automation of the distribution of political messages influence how citizens perceive politics. Our thematic issue closes research gaps by inviting studies focusing on the role of social media in political and societal mobilization by established political actors such as parties and politicians but also social movements and new civics. Therefore, it focuses on the goal-directed use of platforms, contents, and mechanisms of distribution, including the strengths and possibilities of digital campaigns. However, it does not ignore the risks and dangers by also inviting works on mobilization by means of the intentional spreading of false information, conspiracy narratives, or the dysfunctionalities of algorithms and mismanagement by platforms. The thematic issue aims at contributing to a broader scientific understanding of the political implications of digitalization for political and societal mobilization and insights into how digital instruments could promote or hinder democratic development. Submissions might address (but are not limited to) the following questions:

  • Which mobilization strategies do different political actors and/or movements use, and which differences and similarities can be identified between different countries and political strands?
  • (How) do mobilization efforts of social movements and political parties complement or substitute each other?
  • How do left- and right-wing online activism differ (from other forms of online activism, e.g., that of centrist actors and/or green parties and movements)?
  • How does (micro-targeted) online advertising influence citizens’ willingness to participate in political processes?
  • Under which circumstances does “hashtag activism” become impactful?
  • Under which circumstances does online activism lead to “slacktivism” and when and how is it more impactful?

Instructions for Authors:
Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal's instructions for authors and submit their abstracts (maximum of 250 words, with a tentative title) through the abstracts system (here). When submitting their abstracts, authors are also asked to confirm that they are aware that Media and Communication is an open access journal with a publishing fee if the article is accepted for publication after peer-review (corresponding authors affiliated with our institutional members do not incur this fee).


Open Access:
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