Spring 2021, Vol. 32, No. 2
Political polarization spawns divisiveness and inequity, which erodes democracy. People must connect with those with whom they disagree and not just hear the other side but truly listen to it. This essay examines how connective democracy allows the ideals of deliberative democracy to take shape and live out in people’s political lives.
This essay explores ways that individuals and media institutions can improve the quality of interactions with others we are in association with in our communities. Our attitudes and the media that influence and reflect these orientations ought to allow for sustainable connection with others. The concept of connective democracy attempts to meliorate a polarized public, much of which is fragmented and sequestered in various media enclaves.
The communication practices that strong civility recommends and prescribes are the necessary means for saving our democracy, pulling us back from the brink of civil war, and rebuilding an inclusive social fabric that will allow us to make good collective decisions and build durable and healthy relationships.
U.S. publicly funded broadcasting should be protected from ever being turned into a narrow partisan or ideological tool. The most effective protections for the independence of public broadcasting would be the future support of U.S. Presidents, and a U.S. Supreme Court that does not unduly limit the permissible delegation of authority to government agencies.
In recent years there have been a number of studies focused on television coverage of climate change. This article focuses on so-called (or implied) experts in the field of climate change who are given a platform by news agencies to draw conclusions regarding climate change. The news media have an obligation and an opportunity to do more when it comes to finding experts in the field to speak to the issue of climate change.
As issues of personal privacy online grow increasingly problematic, newsrooms have seen a rise in requests for information to be unpublished. Should people’s past mistakes be available forever to every potential employer or romantic partner, or does unpublishing threaten freedom of the press and the public’s right to know about a person’s past?
This case study examines the ethics of the Apple News+ monthly subscription service. Is Apple News+ merely part of an industry-wide shift toward publishers relying on third-party distribution to better reach audiences, or is it an attempt to control the content of publishers while taking profit from their readers?
Peter Pomerantsev provides detailed case studies in how disinformation has been weaponized in the modern digital world, with particular attention to how Russia’s propaganda machine has evolved from the Cold War to now.