Social Media and Political Organizing: Slacktivism or Game-changer? |
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Social Media and Political Organizing: Slacktivism or Game-changer?

Tuesday, September 4, 2012 - 7:00pm to 8:30pm

In the run up to the 2012 fall elections, UW–Madison professors Lewis Friedland and Michael Xenos discuss the role that social media plays in political organizing. A professor in the UW-Madison School of Journalism & Mass Communication and an affiliated professor in the Department of Sociology, Friedland founded and curently directs the Center for Communication and Democracy at UW-Madison. Michael Xenos is an associate professor of communication arts at UW-Madison who studies new media and civic engagement. Friedland and Xenos discuss the latest research at the intersection of politics and social media, exploring questions like: Does social media enable real dialogue among citizens with differing views, or merely create an echo chamber that reinforces previously-held opinions? Will social media augment or erode traditional media coverage of political campaigns and events? What role does social media play in person-to-person engagement in our 21st-century democracy?

Sponsored by the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts & Letters, this Academy Evening talk was recorded on September 24, 2012, at the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art lecture hall in Overture Center for the Arts, Madison.


Lewis Friedland is Professor in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication and Departments of Sociology and Educational Psychology (Affiliated), University of Wisconsin–Madison, where he directs the Center for Communication and Democracy.  He teaches and conducts research on theory of the public sphere and civil society, the impa

Michael Xenos is faculty member in the Department of Communication Arts at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He received his PhD in Political Science from the University of Washington in 2005, and was one of the first to complete the Interdisciplinary Concentration in Political Communication offered there.

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