Discussion Questions for Wednesday

Here are the discussion questions mentioned in class about the democratic potential of mass media.  We will specifically focus on social media as much has been claimed in recent years about the democratic potential of this media.  These questions also focus on how contemporary communications technologies either foster or do not foster a public sphere.  These questions are also posted on Blackboard.

What is the democratic potential of mass media?  Particularly social media?

Where does our sense of public exist today?

What role does the media play in fostering a sense of public, or in discouraging it?

Where does public discussion take place and who has access to it?

Is it in public squares, cafes, bars, and town meetings, in the editorials and letters of newspapers, on radio and television talk shows, or in internet chat groups and internet sites?

What role do media play in building a sense of the public?

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