What is New Media?

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New Media describes the most recent advancement in mass communication that has been done through the use of the internet. Doug Eyman goes over this idea in his book “Defining and Locating Digital Rhetoric.” Eyman compares the definition of New Media to Digital Rhetoric in which there can be many different meanings and interpretations. Currently, many relate this idea with multimedia, specifically one that involves the use of technology. Multimedia refers to the use of more than one source of media to allow for mass communication and expression. This new media is different from “old media” due to the devices used with it. For example, social platforms such as Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook follow its ideology. They allow for mass communication and collaboration through the internet, allowing anyone anywhere to interact.

Packer & Jordan’s Essential Characteristics

Randall Packer and Ken Jordan, authors of “Multimedia: From Wagner to Virtual Reality,” said New Media has to have five characteristics. These include Integration, Interactivity, Hypermedia, Immersion, and Narrativity. Twitter, is an example of new media as it adheres to all five characteristics.

  1. Integration; Twitter allows people to post information, videos, and pictures online for the world to see
  2. Interactivity; people can comment, like, and share these posts at any time.
  3. Hypermedia; hashtags and @’s are hyperlinks that can send viewers to other parts of the website. Hashtags are trends or popular words or phrases that can bring people to other posts that use that hashtag. The @’s are followed by the name of another user, this can bring people to that user’s account/posts.
  4. Immersion; social media, especially among younger generations, is considered addicting because of how immersed people become in scrolling through posts.
  5. Narrativity; online posts generally have a story attached whether it’s a short or long one. These posts can range from a major event happening worldwide to a simple story about a newly adopted puppy. The only limit these posts have is to follow Twitter’s Community Guidelines; for example, you cannot post sexual or gore content.

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