Comments on remix videos (blog post 9)

I’m delighted to see that most of you have posted a video this week.

For comments this week, of course you need to WATCH the videos. In your comment/reply on the post, simply tell the student who made the video specifically what you liked most about the video. Feel free to ask questions too.

I will be expecting each of your comments to show me that you watched the video.

Blog post 5: Algorithms and their consequences

Two articles are assigned this week. Find them in the Course Schedule and on Ares.

Content of the post: There are three parts. Complete all three in your post.

Part 1: How would you explain algorithms to a young child, around 8 years old, so that she could understand them? Do not quote or copy any definitions from anywhere. Use your own words and write out this explanation. Continue reading

This site has been updated for Fall 2016


Hello! If you’re looking for answers to questions about this course, see the About page. Everything here has been updated, including the reading list and the Syllabus. For a week-by-week outline of topics, see the Course Schedule.

There are no pre-reqs for this course. It is for grad students only. Grad students from outside the College of Journalism and Communications are welcome.

Updates for fall 2016

Topics in this course:

  • Activism (especially online)
  • Algorithms in everyday life
  • Crowdsourcing
  • Democratic rights and freedoms
  • Foreign policy (public diplomacy)
  • Hackers/digital piracy
  • Mobile Internet
  • Privacy (Facebook, Google)
  • Remix/copyright (creative works)
  • Surveillance (by governments)
  • Twitter as a public forum / #blacklivesmatter
  • Viral media

The readings and the weekly schedule are still being updated.

We’re ready to roll!

Photo by Mindy McAdams taken on Jan. 12, 2013

All pages are up to date for the Fall 2015 semester, and I’ll see you all in class on Wednesday!

Make sure you’re there so you can hear the instructions for how to set up your individual blog for this course.

Get ready by following the four links at the top of this page: About This Course, Syllabus, Course Schedule 2015, and Required Work.

The Required Work page is especially useful, because it spells out exactly what you will need to do in this course.

For all the new students: Welcome to Gator Country!

Sign up for Fall 2015

Poster Fall 2015

This course examines the relationships between communication technologies and democracy, not only in the United States but elsewhere as well. New communication technologies, such as the Internet, will not automatically lead to or improve democracy, but they do contribute to changes in the society as a whole. We will examine how changes related to communication media might enhance or curtail so-called democratic freedoms, with a particular emphasis on the relationships among the media, the public, and the government in a democracy. Please note that the media include TV, Internet, printed publications, and more. NGOs (nonprofits) also play a role in communication in today’s democracies.

This is not a course in political communication.

Graduate students from outside the College of Journalism and Communications are welcome to enroll in this course.

This course requires multiple reading assignments every week. Most readings come from scholarly journals and will be provided via UF Course Reserves. There are 12 writing assignments in this course. The student’s grade depends on the ability to think critically about the assigned readings and to write clearly, correctly and well. Active participation in class discussions also contributes to the student’s final grade.

The fall 2012 semester has ended

This is the concluding post in this blog for 2012. This blog was used to run a university course completely from a free blog. Fall 2012 was the second time I ran the course this way (the first was in Fall 2010).

If you are curious about this course, please have a look at these links:

  • About This Course will give you a brief overview of the purpose of the course.
  • Required Work will show you what the students had to do.
  • All posts in the Assignments category will show you exactly what students had to produce each week in their individual blogs.
  • The first assignment instructed students to set up an individual blog for use in this course.

Most of the readings for this course were taken from academic journals, to which students had access via our university library. To see a full reference list of the readings, view the Readings PDF (2 pages, 78 KB). Some of these will be replaced when I teach the course in the future, but some will be retained.

Where to see your grades

When I have finished grading an assignment, you’ll be able to see your own grade in e-Learning. Log in here:

There are links to Gradebook and Gradebook 2 on the left side of the Sakai (e-Learning) course page. You can find your grade in either one — they have the same data.

If you have a question about your grade, you can ask me in my office, or — at your discretion — in an email message to me. But please never ask about your personal grades in the classroom or in a hallway.

Update (Sept. 6): If there’s something wrong in Sakai, that’s usually an issue for the UF Help Desk. But if it’s something like everyone else has their grades and yours are still blank, you can tell me that in the classroom — that doesn’t violate your grades privacy.  😀