Does media reflect culture or does it create culture?
For the final assessment, you will be examining this question through the lens of a specific media channel of your choice. This media channel may come from
new media, legacy media, or residual media.
Communication, in the broadest terms, encompasses all media channels through which information is exchanged. That information can be exchanged in a myriad
of ways or channels. As technology has progressed, we have seen the advent of the internet and all the communicative tools available through it. These digital,
largely internet-based tools are called “new media.”
While investigating new media, you may also ask what qualifies as old media, which is referred to as legacy media or traditional media by communication
professionals. This, in turn, will lead you to investigate residual media as well. In the briefest of terms, legacy media refers to books, magazines, cable TV,
newspapers, and movies. Residual media refers to film and film cameras, vinyl LPs and record players, radio, and hand-written letters. For this project you will
have the choice of working with media from any of these three categories: new media, residual media, or legacy media.
Once you have selected your media channel, you will examine how it reflects culture and society, and how it creates culture and society. It is important to
examine both sides of this debate. For example, you could investigate how online dating (a form of social media that falls in the new media category) reflects our
culture and society, but has also created a culture around itself. Another example would be to investigate how the vinyl LP (a residual media) was created by a
culture and its needs, but has also created a culture around itself. A third example would be to investigate reality television (a form of television that is legacy
media). In what ways did our culture create reality television, and in what ways has reality television formed a culture in itself?
The project is divided into two milestones, which will be submitted at various points throughout the course to scaffold learning and ensure quality final
submissions. These milestones will be submitted in Modules Two and Four. The final product will be submitted in Module Five.
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