San Francisco sunrise run : JAMcArthur.com

Reflections on NCA 2010

The annual conference of the National Communication Association is typically a whirlwind of thought-provoking formal sessions and informal discussions. This year was no exception. I began this conference with a 5.14 mile run, complete with a beautiful view of Sunday’s sunrise (at right). My run took me down Market Street to the bay, around the…

Sharing, Hiding, and Finding Ourselves on Facebook

Four papers presented at the National Communication Association 2010 annual conference dealt with the issues and motivations that impact information sharing on Facebook. Exploring Privacy Management and Disclosure on Facebook Camille A. Hall, Keturi D. Beatty, Bethany Petty, and Zuoming Wang (University of North Texas) Hall et.al. discussed the effects of profile-owner’s gender and potential…

Digital Privacy and Digital Literacy

Knowledge of the role of Internet surveillance could play a role in our privacy behaviors online. For the typical Internet user, survelliance knowledge could include Internet tracking, marketing research, and demographic-driven advertising, among others. Yet, many typical Internet users lack basic knowledge of the surveillance practices that occur on sites they visit regularly. Some of…

Social Media for Crisis Communication

Social media outlets have a role to play as one tool in an effective crisis communication strategy, say researchers Shari Veil (University of Kentucky), Tara Buehner (University of Oklahoma), and Michael Palenchar (Univ of Tennessee, Knoxville). At the National Communication Association 2010 annual conference, they presented a paper entitled, “Increasing Dialogue in Disasters: Incorporating Social…

Connecting to Publics with Social Media

Public relations practice has been dramatically impacted by social media. Papers presented in the Public Relations Division at the National Communication Association 2010 annual conference tied social media and web-based tools to core functions of public relations practice – using a variety of theoretical frames.  Each provides unique insights into the theory and practice of…

Theorizing Social Media

Standing room only in a packed meeting room set the tone for a session on “Theorizing social media” at the National Communication Association Annual Conference, demonstrating the growing interest among communication scholars for understanding advancing technologies in the framework of existing communication theory. One attendee remarked, “All the scholarship on social media, when it is…

The State of the Communication Discipline

The National Communication Association offered its inaugural “State of the Discipline” Address at the 2010 Annual Conference. Dr. David Zarefsky of Northwestern University was chosen to begin this discussion having attended 43 consecutive NCA conferences and served in numerous leadership roles. From Zarefsky’s perspective, is communication a discipline? “Yes and no.” We lack widely-known scholarly…

Social Media in PR: Is it really necessary?

In what ways have social media expanded the ideas of public relations instruction? How does social media challenge traditional models of instruction? How can social media impact research? Is social media even valuable at all? These questions guided the conversation today in the NCA panel entitled,”Bridging Social Media with Teaching, Research and Practice: Exploring the…