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Session Submission Type: Roundtable Proposal
From media policies to representations of race, gender, and sexuality, many communication researchers’ studies are highly relevant to current political and social debates. Yet, pundits’ and policymakers’ positions are rarely based on peer-reviewed research. The fact that much of the scholarship is hidden behind paywalls and and is written in academic jargon isolates it from the world of non-experts. Moreover, most academics are neither trained nor expected to engage with journalists or to reach out to policymakers, with tenure and promotion committees largely valuing peer-reviewed work. Despite these obstacles, many scholars are interested in reaching a wider public audience and having a social impact through their work. The participants on this roundtable have a considerable range of experiences as public scholars, and in order to help others engage with the media, the roundtable participants will offer practical advice, including how scholars can become known as sources for journalists--as well as how we can disrupt the perpetuation of the systems of power (race, gender, seniority, etc.) that limit who gets called. Participants will discuss the effectiveness of the strategies they have used to try to get media attention for the issues they are working on, including writing for mainstream media, “amplifier platforms” (like The Conversation or Medium), and social media.
Together, we will explore the relationship between scholarship and activism by examining how our engagement with the mainstream media and social media might contribute to (and/or complicate) our various goals for social justice and policy change. We will discuss both the positive outcomes we’ve experienced from engaging with the media, including examples of social, political, or policy change, as well as what we’ve learned from our mistakes, backlash to our media work, and other negative outcomes. On this roundtable, we will discuss how we navigate the tensions between both studying mainstream media and becoming its fodder.
Exploiting the ‘Hybrid Media Environment’ to Amplify Scholarly Contributions to Public Debate - Jean Burgess, Queensland University of Technology
Talking to Journalists About the Teen Sexting Panic: Feeding and Resisting the Media Frenzy - Amy Adele Hasinoff, U of Colorado Denver
Framing or Getting Framed: The Opportunities and Challenges of Talking to Journalists About Race - Charlton McIlwain, New York U
Expanding the Political Imaginary: Using History to Intervene in Policy Discourses, Create Counter-Narratives, and Denaturalize Neoliberal Paradigms - Victor W. Pickard
Unpacking Authoritarianism: Challenging National Media Biases through Telling the Stories of Chinese Media Activists - Maria Repnikova, Georgia State U
Movements Begin With the Telling of Untold Stories: Strategies for Working With Journalists to Build Community Power - Todd Wolfson, Rutgers SC&I