Archive For The “Digital Culture” Category

Participation Inequality: Women and Online Comments

By | March 30, 2017

Online comments sections are our modern day venues for collaboration, for public discourse, for democratic deliberation. The internet was supposed to even the playing field for participation.
 But for many women, wading into the incivility of online comments or social media exchanges is like walking alone down a scary back alley, or into an angry […]

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The harbinger of our hateful electorate? Look no further than online comments

By | December 18, 2016

The contentious post-election climate has left many Americans wondering how our democracy became so spiteful. I think it’s time to heap some blame on online comments. The ability to say offensive things online on a daily basis without consequences has led to new, and more harmful, norms for civic behavior. Toxic fuming online, ad hominem […]

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Think Mark Twain would have used social media?

By | September 26, 2016

For writers, social media is both a tool and a trap. If social media had existed when Mark Twain was publishing, think the American author and humorist would have used it? The writer also known as Samuel Clemens put a 100-year embargo on his autobiography. Why? He was known to be fiercely protective of his […]

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Consequence-free speech

By | July 28, 2016

“My mood, I say, was one of exaltation. I felt as a seeing man might do, with padded feet and noiseless clothes, in a city of the blind. I experienced a wild impulse to jest, to startle people, to clap men on the back, fling people’s hats astray, and generally revel in my extraordinary advantage.” […]

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What journalists should realize about social media: A poem, of sorts

By | April 26, 2016

What is social media? It’s a billboard a live broadcast channel an archive and a library. It’s also a conversation. Unscripted and unpredictable. A customer service feedback line and a crowd-sourcing tool. It’s a polling center a debate arena an angry mob and an echo chamber. Social media is a snark machine. It offers publishing […]

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Social media is often the antithesis of a safe space

By | February 5, 2016

Back in mid-November 2015, I attended the Association of Opinion Journalists Minority Writers Seminar on a fellowship. During the four day workshop at the Poynter Institute in St. Petersburg, Florida, I banged out a rough personal essay about what happened the first time I assigned my journalism students to use Twitter. It was a commentary […]

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To Comment or Not To Comment

By | October 7, 2015

I spend a lot of my time mulling over ways for journalists to elevate online discourse on news stories. Below is a presentation I gave at the 2015 Excellence in Journalism conference in Orlando, FL on September 18. Joining me was Talia Stroud of the Engaging News Project. My prepared script for “To Comment or […]

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Drones Fly Into My Path of Discovery

By | May 29, 2015

One of the best aspects of working as a journalist is the profession’s unanticipated path of discovery — and opportunity. My newly found knowledge of drones is a recent example of this. It started in late July 2014 when an editor/friend at The Hartford Courant asked me if I’d be willing to write an essay […]

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Should Freedom of Expression Be Guaranteed on the Internet?

By | April 9, 2015

Is freedom of expression a universal and inalienable right? What about free expression posted on the Internet? On April 6, 2015, the UConn Global House Learning Community invited me to participate in a timely panel discussion on how ideas of free speech and freedom of expression vary across the world and how the 21st century […]

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The New Data Journalism

By | November 30, 2014

Below is a presentation I gave at “Data Driven Connecticut 2014: Progress and Possibilities | Moving from Data to Action: A Connecticut Data Collaborative Conference” on Friday, November 24, 2014 at Yale School of Management, Evans Hall, New Haven, Connecticut. I joined a panel of professional journalists to explore new developments and trends in data-driven […]

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