School of Communication Studies introduces Colloquium Series

Jessica Darling

Jeffrey Child kicked off a new Colloquium Series on Friday, Feb. 6 sponsored by the School of Communication Studies.

The Colloquium Series consist of three research presentations open to the public that will take place the first Friday of every month from 4 to 5 p.m. in Taylor Hall room 146.

The series “is an opportunity for us to share, across the college, the research that faculty are doing,” said Paul Haridakis, director of the School of Communication Studies.

Child, the associate professor at the School of Communication Studies, was the first of the researchers who presented “Social Media, Communication and Effective Privacy Management: An Exploration of Family Interaction through Facebook and about Facebook Content.

“How do people make decisions about what to share online?” Child said. “How do they respond to breakdowns in their privacy management and how do they interact with different audiences like co-workers, friends, family members and different generations of their family?”

Child said that today there are many people who use social media to connect with different audiences and there are a lot of privacy ramifications people do no think about.

“The problem with social media is that people we do not necessarily want having access to our information do and that people are trying to find a balance between meeting social media goals and preventing unwanted intrusion,” Child said.

Haridakis and Mei-Chen Lin, associate professor in the School of Communication Studies, will present on Friday, March 6 “The Importance of Intergroup Identity in Explaining Outcomes of Media use During a U.S. Presidential Campaign: A Collaborative Study.”

“We conducted research that is on media effects, but from theoretical perspectives that put the audience member, the person using the media, at the center of the process,” Haridakis said.

Haridakis said they plan on talking about research completed during the 2012 presidential campaign focusing on people’s group memberships, for example whether people are conservative or liberal, influence the effects of using and obtaining information about the political campaign.

Haridakis said the role people play in their group membership also influences the extent to which people felt the media were biased for or against their political party.

“The perspectives that we are coming from are looking first at the person and their group memberships because when we see stuff in the media we filter that through our own filters,” Haridakis said. “It is our social and psychological filters that we are focusing on.”

Chance York, assistant professor in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, will present on Friday, April 3 the final series “The Nasty (and Engaged) Citizen: Associations Between Media Use, Political Inactivity, and Political Participation.”

The research he will present is a follow up to his article “Cultivating Political Incivility” published in 2013 by Electronic News.

“The ideal is that, especially with cable, you see so many portrayals of the president and congress being nasty to each other,” York said. “If cable is your main source of news you begin to perceive that these people are really hostile towards each other, more so than if you watch network news.”

The data shows that if you use the Internet and you use cable news, you are more likely to have one-word responses that are very uncivil toward either Barack Obama or one of the Republican candidates that may have been involved, York said.

All three of the Colloquium Series presentations include the presentation of research more in depth and Q&A from the audience.

Contact Jessica Darling at [email protected].