Mobile Gaming in Asia: Politics, Culture and Emerging Technologies

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Dal Yong Jin finished his Ph. He has taught in three countries: the U. Jin's major research and teaching interests are globalization and media, Korean cinema, Asian media studies, transnational cultural studies, new media and digital gaming, and the political economy of media and culture.

In addition, he has contributed numerous journal articles and book chapters. She was a winner of the William L. Are media and technology critical to the forward march of humanity? Are they pernicious capitalist tools that lead to the exploitation of workers worldwide? Each perspective generates understandings of technology and media that help us examine the way our lives are affected. Because functionalism focuses on how media and technology contribute to the smooth functioning of society, a good place to begin understanding this perspective is to write a list of functions you perceive media and technology to perform.

As you might guess, with nearly every U. Television advertising is a highly functional way to meet a market demographic where it lives. Sponsors can use the sophisticated data gathered by network and cable television companies regarding their viewers and target their advertising accordingly. Commercial advertising precedes movies in theatres and shows up on and inside of public transportation, as well as on the sides of buildings and roadways.

Major corporations such as Coca-Cola bring their advertising into public schools, sponsoring sports fields or tournaments, as well as filling the halls and cafeterias of those schools with vending machines hawking their goods. With the rising concerns about childhood obesity and attendant diseases, the era of pop machines in schools may be numbered.

But not to worry. An obvious manifest function of media is its entertainment value.

Politics, Culture and Emerging Technologies

Most people, when asked why they watch television or go to the movies, would answer that they enjoy it. Clearly, enjoyment is paramount. On the technology side, as well, there is a clear entertainment factor to the use of new innovations. From online gaming to chatting with friends on Facebook, technology offers new and more exciting ways for people to entertain themselves. Even while the media is selling us goods and entertaining us, it also serves to socialize us, helping us pass along norms, values, and beliefs to the next generation.

Book Mobile Gaming In Asia: Politics, Culture And Emerging Technologies

In fact, we are socialized and resocialized by media throughout our life course. All forms of media teach us what is good and desirable, how we should speak, how we should behave, and how we should react to events. Media also provide us with cultural touchstones during events of national significance. How many of your older relatives can recall watching the explosion of the space shuttle Challenger on television? How many of those reading this textbook followed the events of September 11 or Hurricane Katrina on the television or internet?

But debate exists over the extent and impact of media socialization. Krahe and colleagues demonstrated that violent media content has a desensitizing affect and is correlated with aggressive thoughts. Another group of scholars Gentile, Mathieson, and Crick, found that among children, exposure to media violence led to an increase in both physical and relational aggression.

Yet, a meta-analysis study covering four decades of research Savage, could not establish a definitive link between viewing violence and committing criminal violence. It is clear from watching people emulate the styles of dress and talk that appear in media that media has a socializing influence. What is not clear, despite nearly 50 years of empirical research, is how much socializing influence the media has when compared to other agents of socialization, which include any social institution that passes along norms, values, and beliefs such as peers, family, religious institutions, and the like.

Like media, many forms of technology do indeed entertain us, provide a venue for commercialization, and socialize us. For example, some studies suggest the rising obesity rate is correlated with the decrease in physical activity caused by an increase in use of some forms of technology, a latent function of the prevalence of media in society Kautiainen et al. Without a doubt, a manifest function of technology is to change our lives, sometimes for the better and sometimes for the worse.

Think of how the digital age has improved the ways we communicate. Have you ever used Skype or another webcast to talk to a friend or family member far away? Or maybe you have organized a fund drive, raising thousands of dollars, all from your desk chair. Of course, the downside to this ongoing information flow is the near impossibility of disconnecting from technology, leading to an expectation of constant convenient access to information and people.

Such a fast-paced dynamic is not always to our benefit. Some sociologists assert that this level of media exposure leads to narcotizing dysfunction , a term that describes when people are too overwhelmed with media input to really care about the issue, so their involvement becomes defined by awareness instead of by action about the issue at hand Lazerfeld and Merton, In contrast to theories in the functional perspective, the critical perspective focuses on the creation and reproduction of inequality — social processes that tend to disrupt society rather than contribute to its smooth operation.

When taking a critical perspective, one major focus is the differential access to media and technology embodied in the digital divide. Critical sociologists also look at who controls the media, and how media promotes the norms of upper-middle-class white demographics while minimizing the presence of the working class, especially people of colour. Powerful individuals and social institutions have a great deal of influence over which forms of technology are released, when and where they are released, and what kind of media is available for our consumption, a form of gatekeeping.

Shoemaker and Voss define gatekeeping as the sorting process by which thousands of possible messages are shaped into a mass media—appropriate form and reduced to a manageable amount. In other words, the people in charge of the media decide what the public is exposed to, which, as C. With a hegemonic media, culturally diverse society can be dominated by one race, gender, or class through the manipulation of the media imposing its worldview as a societal norm. New media renders the gatekeeper role less of a factor in information distribution.

Popular sites such as YouTube and Facebook engage in a form of democratized self-policing. Users are encouraged to report inappropriate behaviour that moderators will then address. In addition, some conflict theorists suggest that the way North American media is generated results in an unbalanced political arena. Those with the most money can buy the most media exposure, run smear campaigns against their competitors, and maximize their visual presence. The Conservative Party began running attack ads on Justin Trudeau moments after his acceptance speech on winning the leadership of the Liberal Party in It is difficult to avoid the Enbridge and Cenovus advertisements that promote their controversial Northern Gateway pipeline and tar sands projects.

What do you think a critical perspective theorist would suggest about the potential for the non-rich to be heard in politics? Social scientists take the idea of the surveillance society so seriously that there is an entire journal devoted to its study, Surveillance and Society. The panoptic surveillance envisioned by Jeremy Bentham and later analyzed by Michel Foucault is increasingly realized in the form of technology used to monitor our every move.

This surveillance was imagined as a form of complete visibility and constant monitoring in which the observation posts are centralized and the observed are never communicated with directly. Today, digital security cameras capture our movements, observers can track us through our cell phones, and police forces around the world use facial-recognition software. Take a look at popular television shows, advertising campaigns, and online game sites.

In most, women are portrayed in a particular set of parameters and tend to have a uniform look that society recognizes as attractive. Most are thin, white or light-skinned, beautiful, and young. Why does this matter?


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Feminist perspective theorists believe it is crucial in creating and reinforcing stereotypes. For example, Fox and Bailenson found that online female avatars the characters you play in online games like World of Warcraft or Second Life conforming to gender stereotypes enhances negative attitudes toward women, and Brasted found that media advertising in particular promotes gender stereotypes.

The gender gap in tech-related fields science, technology, engineering, and math is no secret. A U. Department of Commerce report suggested that gender stereotyping is one reason for this gap, acknowledging the bias toward men as keepers of technological knowledge U. Department of Commerce, But gender stereotypes go far beyond the use of technology.

Press coverage in the media reinforces stereotypes that subordinate women, giving airtime to looks over skills, and disparaging women who defy accepted norms. Recent research in new media has offered a mixed picture of its potential to equalize the status of men and women in the arenas of technology and public discourse. A European agency, the Advisory Committee on Equal Opportunities for Men and Women , issued an opinion report suggesting that while there is the potential for new media forms to perpetuate gender stereotypes and the gender gap in technology and media access, at the same time new media could offer alternative forums for feminist groups and the exchange of feminist ideas.

Still, the committee warned against the relatively unregulated environment of new media and the potential for antifeminist activities, from pornography to human trafficking, to flourish there. Increasingly prominent in the discussion of new media and feminism is cyberfeminism , the application to, and promotion of, feminism online. Research on cyberfeminism runs the gamut from the liberating use of blogs by women living in Iraq during the second Gulf War Pierce, to the analysis of postmodern discourse on the relationship between the body and technology Kerr, Technology itself may act as a symbol for many.

The kind of computer you own, the kind of car you drive, whether or not you can afford the latest Apple product — these serve as a social indicator of wealth and status. Neo-Luddites are people who see technology as symbolizing the coldness and alienation of modern life. But for technophiles , technology symbolizes the potential for a brighter future. For those adopting an ideological middle ground, technology might symbolize status in the form of a massive flat-screen television or failure in owning a basic old mobile phone with no bells or whistles.

Meanwhile, media create and spread symbols that become the basis for our shared understanding of society. Theorists working in the interactionist perspective focus on this social construction of reality, an ongoing process in which people subjectively create and understand reality.

Media constructs our reality in a number of ways. For some, the people they watch on a screen can become a primary group, meaning the small informal groups of people who are closest to them. For many others, media becomes a reference group: a group that influences an individual and to which an individual compares himself or herself, and by which we judge our successes and failures.

We might do very well without an Android smartphone, until we see characters using it on our favourite television show or our classmates whipping one out between classes. While media may indeed be the medium to spread the message of the rich white males, Gamson, Croteau, Hoynes, and Sasson point out that some forms of media discourse allow the appearance of competing constructions of reality.

For example, advertisers find new and creative ways to sell us products we do not need and probably would not want without their prompting, but some networking sites such as Freecycle offer a commercial-free way of requesting and trading items that would otherwise be discarded. While Twitter and Facebook encourage us to check in and provide details of our day through online social networks, corporations can just as easily promote their products on these sites.

Even supposedly crowd-sourced sites like Yelp which aggregates local reviews are not immune to corporate shenanigans. That is, we think we are reading objective observations when in reality we may be buying into one more form of advertising. Facebook, which started as a free social network for college students, is increasingly a monetized business, selling you goods and services in subtle ways. But chances are you do not think of Facebook as one big online advertisement.

What started out as a symbol of coolness and insider status, unavailable and inaccessible to parents and corporate shills, now promotes consumerism in the form of games and fandom. For example, think of all the money spent to upgrade popular Facebook games like Farmville. But if it means a weekly coupon, they will, in essence, rent out space on their Facebook page for Pampers to appear. Thus, we develop both new ways to spend money and brand loyalties that will last even after Facebook is considered outdated and obsolete.

What cannot be forgotten with new technology is the dynamic tension between the liberating effects of these technologies in democratizing information access and flow, and the newly emerging corporate ownership and revenue models that necessitate control of the same technologies. Technology Today Technology is the application of science to address the problems of daily life. The fast pace of technological advancement means the advancements are continuous, but that not everyone has equal access.

The gap created by this unequal access has been termed the digital divide. Media and Technology in Society Media and technology have been interwoven from the earliest days of human communication. The printing press, the telegraph, and the internet are all examples of their intersection. Mass media has allowed for more shared social experiences, but new media now creates a seemingly endless amount of airtime for any and every voice that wants to be heard. Advertising has also changed with technology. New media allows consumers to bypass traditional advertising venues, causing companies to be more innovative and intrusive as they try to gain our attention.

Global Implications Technology drives globalization, but what that means can be hard to decipher. While some economists see technological advances leading to a more level playing field where anyone anywhere can be a global contender, the reality is that opportunity still clusters in geographically advantaged areas. Still, technological diffusion has led to the spread of more and more technology across borders into peripheral and semi-peripheral nations. However, true technological global equality is a long way off.

Theoretical Perspectives on Media and Technology There are myriad theories about how society, technology, and media will progress. Functionalism sees the contribution that technology and media provide to the stability of society, from facilitating leisure time to increasing productivity. Conflict theorists are more concerned with how technology reinforces inequalities among communities, both within and among countries. They also look at how media typically give voice to the most powerful, and how new media might offer tools to help those who are disenfranchised.

Symbolic interactionists see the symbolic uses of technology as signs of everything from a sterile futuristic world to a successful professional life. Jerome is able to use the internet to select reliable sources for his research paper, but Charlie just copies large pieces of web pages and pastes them into his paper.

Media and Technology in Society 5. When it comes to technology, media, and society, which of the following is true?

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If the U. Which of the following is the primary component of the evolutionary model of technological change? Global Implications In the mids, the U. The movie Babel featured an international cast and was filmed on location in various nations. When it screened in theatres worldwide, it introduced a number of ideas and philosophies about cross-cultural connections. Theoretical Perspectives on Media and Technology Introduction to Media and Technology Vlessing, Etan. Technology Today Guillen, M.


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Explaining the global digital divide: Economic, political and sociological drivers of cross-national internet use. Social Forces, — Kedrosky, Paul. Cars vs cell phone embodied energy. Liff, Sonia, and Adrian Shepard. An evolving gender digital divide? Looker, Dianne and Thiessen, Victor. The digital divide in Canadian schools: factors affecting student access to and use of information technology. OECD: Paris. Pew Research Center. Demographics of internet users. Pew Internet and American Life Project. The Economist.

Planned Obsolescence. The Economist Newspaper Limited. Sciadas, George. Monitoring the digital divide … and beyond. Canada: Overview of E-waste related information. Washington, Jesse. Media and Technology in Society Anderson, C. Effects of violent video games on aggressive behavior, aggressive cognition, aggressive affect, physiological arousal, and prosocial behavior: A meta-analytic review of the scientific literature.

Psychological Science, — Anderson, Craig. Violent video games: Myths, facts and unanswered questions. American Psychological Association. Anderson, Philip and Michael Tushman. Technological discontinuities and dominant designs: A cyclical model of technological change. Administrative Science Quarterly, — Cisco Connected world technology report PDF. Claburn, Thomas. Google has plans for Titan drones. Information Week. Google invester relations: Financial tables Alphabet Investor Relations. IDC Custom Solutions. Always connected: How smartphones and social media keep us connected. Ladurantaye, Steve.

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The Globe and Mail. Lievrouw, Leah A. Handbook of new media: Social shaping and social consequences. McGivern, Ronald. Thesis, Simon Fraser University. Mercola, Dr. Finally… Solo farmer fights Monsanto and wins. Monsanto, N. Percy Schmeiser. Radio is dead. Long live radio. CBC : Under the Influence. Video games. Patent and Trademark Office. General information concerning patents. Loader, P. Nixon, and D. Cyberprotest: New media, citizens, and social movements. New York: Routledge. World Association of Newspapers. Newspapers: A brief history. Global Implications Bristow, Michael.

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US and China superpower race to lead the future of technology comes down to $6 billion

Belmont: Wadsworth Thomson Learning. Friedman, Thomas. The world is flat: A brief history of the twenty-first century. New York: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux. ITU News. Jan, Mirza. Globalization of media: Key issues and dimensions. European Journal of Scientific Research, — Perkins, Anne. The Guardian, Katine Chronicles blog, Livelihoods. McLuhan, Marshall.

Understanding media: The extensions of man. New York: McGraw-Hill. Newspapers Canada. Pierson, David. Number of web users in China hits million. Los Angeles Times. Rowswell, Mark. Dashan Live [online]. Theckedath, Dillan and Thomas, Terrence J. Media ownership and convergence in Canada.

World Bank. Global economic prospects Technology diffusion in the developing world. Care Bears vs. Transformers: Gender stereotypes in advertisements. The Socjourn.

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Department of Commerce. Figure 8. In the replies, people are calling on authorities to release Mohammed, who was still missing. Skip to content Increase Font Size. Learning Objectives 8. Technology Today Define technology and describe its evolution. Understand technological inequality and issues related to unequal access to technology. Describe the role of planned obsolescence in technological development. Media and Technology in Society Describe the evolution and current role of different media, like newspapers, television, and new media.

Understand the function of product advertising in media. Global Implications Explain the advantages and concerns of media globalization. Understand the globalization of technology. Theoretical Perspectives on Media and Technology Understand and discuss how media and technology are analyzed through various sociological perspectives. Smartphone users check Facebook approximately 14 times a day. People spend an average of minutes a day on their smartphones including 33 minutes on Facebook.

Section Quiz 8. Technology Today 1. Digital divide Knowledge gap Feminist perspective E-gap 3. The conflict perspective Conspicuous consumption Media Planned obsolescence 4. In the early stages of human societies With the invention of the computer During the Renaissance During the 19th century 8. Media influences technology, but not society. Technology created media, but society has nothing to do with these.

Technology, media, and society are bound and cannot be separated. Society influences media but is not connected to technology. Utility Plant Design The U. Patent Office does not issue a patent for plants. Technology should not be subject to patenting. Technology and the media evolve together. Technology can be traced back to the early stages of human society. A breakthrough in one form of technology leads to a number of variations, and technological developments. Which of the following is not a form of new media?

A cable television program Wikipedia Facebook A cooking blog 9. Boys who play violent video games become more aggressive, but girls do not Girls who play violent video games become more aggressive, but boys do not Violent video games have no connection to aggressive behaviour Violent video games lead to an increase in aggressive thought and behaviour Media globalization Technological diffusion Monetizing Planned obsolescence Monopoly Conglomerate Functionalism Technological globalization Technology Conglomerating Symbolic interaction Media globalization Which of the following is not a risk of media globalization?

The creation of cultural and ideological biases The creation of local monopolies The risk of cultural imperialism The loss of local culture China India Afghanistan Australia 8. Social construction of reality Cyberfeminism Market segmentation Referencing Neo-Luddites; technophiles Technophiles; neo-Luddites Cyberfeminists; technophiles Liberal feminists; conflict theorists The symbols created and reproduced by the media The association of technology and technological skill with men The way that various forms of media socialize users The digital divide between the technological haves and have-nots Gatekeeping The digital divide Technophilia Market segmentation [Quiz answers at end of chapter].

Short Answer 8. Technology Today Can you think of people in your own life who support or defy the premise that access to technology leads to greater opportunities? How have you noticed technology use and opportunity to be linked, or does your experience contradict this idea? Should a government be responsible for providing all citizens with access to the internet?

Or is gaining internet access an individual responsibility? How has digital media changed social interactions? Do you believe it has deepened or weakened human connections?