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Paper Information

Journal:   CULTURAL STUDIES & COMMUNICATION   FALL-WINTER 2006 , Volume 2 , Number 4; Page(s) 223 To 245.
 
Paper: 

INTERNET, SOCIAL CAPITAL AND MUTED GROUPS

 
 
Author(s):  MONTAZER GHAEM M., TATAR A.A.
 
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Abstract: 

ICTs have created far-reaching changes in society and in its functions and fabrics. These changes have been so deep and pervasive (and even revolutionary) that the new world and society can not be explored by existing theories and concepts. One of the most affected fields is that associated with the interaction of media and social groups. Media audiences have gained a new power and, therefore, simplistic notions of sender/receiver of the past (or center and margin) do not hold much credit. These changes are all results of series of characteristics in the Internet which allow the user to have unprecedented control over the communication medium as well as the content. Thus, the audience is no longer a passive receiver of media content, rather an active participant in mobilizing communicative means to represent themselves to others, even to a global audience.
In this article, we study the effects of the Internet in the field of representation of social groups and especially muted groups. Thus, using concepts such as "muted groups" theory and the idea of "voice" and combining them with some classic concepts of social and cultural studies (like social capital and empowerment), we will explore how the Internet empowers muted groups to represent themselves and to make their voice heard. Furthermore, the role of the characteristics and utilities of internet are discussed in more details.

 
Keyword(s): THE IDEA OF HUMAN VOICE, INTERACTIVITY, EMPOWERMENT, SOCIAL CAPITAL, MUTED GROUPS
 
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