Monday, 28 November 2011

Call for papers for UGC-sponsored seminar in Kolkatta on Journalism in the age of New Media

I received the following from Prof Uma Shankar Pandey. Please spread the word around:

UGC-Sponsored National Seminar on
Journalism in the Age of New Media
Organized by: Department of Journalism
& Mass Communication,
Surendranath College for Women
24, M G Road, Kolkata 700009 (India)
In Association with Calcutta University
January 10-11, 2012
Call for Papers
Abstracts Due: December 12, 2011
Full Papers Due: December 27, 2011

Seminar Dates : January 10-11, 2012
Registration Fee: Rs 500.
Venue: Gitanjali Auditorium, Kolkata

This national seminar will explore intersections between new media, journalism and technology in order to enhance our understanding of the influence of information and communication technology, specially internet technology on traditional journalism. Are new media fundamentally changing the practice of democracy? Recent years have seen a significant transition in the role computer mediated communications play in the political sphere. A technological revolution driven by economic and market forces is undermining settled practices, established institutions, and traditional communications norms.
The digital revolution in information and communication technologies has created the platform for a free flow of information, ideas and knowledge across the globe. The new media (internet) has been able to incorporate all other means of communication the newspaper, magazine, radio, television, cinema, photographic image, and video. The consequence is the Internet divergence from mass communication. Not only has it led to normative rethinking on the traditional role of the press, it has also led to the  adaptation of publication roles. Apart from the more apparent evolution of the content in mainstream mass media, it has also led to a rethinking of the role of the media professionals.  Added to this is the greater ’interiority’ and also ‘interactivity’ of the audience , which is no longer regarded as a passive entity.
The hyper-local media is now accessible on the international platform. New media outlets have now made it possible for highly differentiated local discourse to be available to a wider transnational media. Interest groups now easily access alternative voices that were hitherto available only to a smaller community audience, across national boundaries. Apart from a plethora of content available for dissemination, new technology also makes it possible for patterns of similar events and issues to be associated across various societies. Solutions to local problems are no longer restricted to the community themselves but are picked up by interest groups, the world over and projected as exemplars.
Classical theories of mass communications are being reworked for the new media, because of its structural differences. The new media has also removed passivity among the media audience by enabling simultaneous reception, alteration and redistribution of cultural objects. It dislocates communicative action from the posts of the nations, provides instantaneous global contact and inserts the late modern subject into a machine apparatus that is networked.Marshal McLuhan had first associated technology with content in his celebrated treatise. He outlined four different media cultures. The first was the ancient culture of oral communication, exemplified by many of the old Sanskrit texts followed by a literature culture using the phonetic alphabet and a handwritten script which coexisted with the oral culture. The third progression, according to McLuhan described as ‘The Gutenberg Galaxy’ was that of mass-produced mechanical printing. Finally we are in the midst of what is known as the culture of the ‘electric media’ — radio, television and computers.
But as we have seen earlier, computer mediated communication provides a separate media culture altogether. The important characteristics of the new media are that media texts are dematerialized in the sense that they are separated from their physical — newsprint — form. The data can be compressed into very small spaces and it can be accessed at very high speeds in non-linear ways.
The seminar, in addition to the usual program of contributed presentations, posters and invited presentations, the main conference will include a selection of keynote talks from prominent media educators and professionals.

Suggested topics for papers include, but are not restricted to, the following:

  • Alternative journalism
  • Analyzing the relationship between new media and mainstream media
  • Best practices in online journalism
  • Business models for news
  • Challenges to journalism education
  • Changes in journalists’ professional identity
  • Changes in the relationship between journalists and the public
  • Changes in workflows and news production routines
  • Changing relationship between editors and reporters
  • Citizen journalism
  • Conflict of Interests in Journalism
  • Democratization of Communication
  • Digitization and journalism practice
  • Doing more with less resources
  • Education, ICT and Media
  • Ethical and legal issues related to globally accessible journalism
  • Ethical Issues in Journalism
  •  Globalizing tendencies of Indian journalism
  • Human computer interaction; social media tools
  • Innovative news formats
  • Inter-Media Rivalry
  • Internet and Participatory culture
  • Marketization of news
  • Media Ecology
  • Media and Education
  • Media Literacy
  • New social media applications; interfaces; interaction techniques
  • Participatory journalism
  • Political Economy of ICTs
  • Politics of access and transparency in E-Governance
  • Psychological, personality-based and ethnographic studies of new media
  • Qualitative and quantitative studies of new media
  • Social media (Facebook, Twitter, blogs, etc.) and news
  • Soft news, infotainment and political life
  • The commoditization of news
  • The effects of the changing nature of journalism on democracy
  • The impact of new technologies on reporting
  • The Implications of Cross Media Ownership
  •  Transnational journalism in India


Please submit your abstracts and papers via the conference management system, EasyChair.
Kindly create a username and a password to access the system. Save your password since you will need it to access the system. Click the link
below to submit abstract online.

All accepted papers and abstracts will be published in the conference proceedings.
Send me an email at or call me at +919433180755 for any clarifications. Spot registration is welcome. Local accommodation can be arranged for Rs 300-400 per person on a twin sharing basis at hotels close to the seminar venue. Prior booking is advised

Kolkata, the third largest city in India is regarded as its cultural capital. It is the only city in India to have produced Nobel laureates. Rabindranath Tagore, Mother Teresa and Amartya Sen are all identified with Kolkata.  It was the capital of British India till 1911. It is regarded as one of India’s busiest tourist destinations.
Mid-January is the best time to be in Kolkata with minimum temperatures around 12degrees and the maximum around 25 degrees Celsius.
 The seminar venue at 24, Mahatma Gandhi Road, Kolkata-9 is very close to the Sealdah Railway station. It is a 10 minute walk from the University of Calcutta, College Street campus and 4 km from Howrah station. The city airport is just 15 km away. Being located in central Kolkata, access to different parts of the city is extremely convenient.

Uma Shankar Pandey
Seminar Convenor

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