Media

“Media” is a word with unusual weight in the United States. The keyword appears in the name of a discipline—media studies—as well as numerous subfields, such as media industry studies, feminist media studies, comparative and transnational media studies, and most recently, digital media studies. “Participatory media,” “interactive media,” and “social media” are all relatively new terms that describe the production and consumption of digital texts, images, and sounds through the World Wide Web and mobile applications that use social networks such as YouTube, Pandora, Facebook, and Twitter. The quick uptake and incorporation of these new media into everyday life in the United States and globally have resulted in a proliferation of usages of the keyword “media.”

Though “media” is the grammatical plural of the singular “medium,” the word is most often used in the singular. It is easy to portray “the media” in negative terms as “addictive” and socially isolating, …

This essay may be found on page 165 of the printed volume.

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