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Communication Colloquium Series: The Resignation Industry and the Future of Media Studies

Monday, April 30, 2018 at 1:30pm to 2:45pm

Mann Library, 102
Cornell University Mann Library, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853, USA

This presentation will bring together three research strands that Dr. Joseph Turow has pursued alone and with colleagues: (1) national survey findings about what Americans know and think about commercial surveillance; (2) exploration into the institutional dynamics of social power regarding media and marketing, and (3) concern with direction of media studies, especially as it relates to the intersection of issues relating to marketing and society in the digital era. He will argue that encouraging Americans’ resignation regarding surveillance is a pervasive and purposeful corporate activity that will corrode political and cultural democracy. With the aim of helping to blunt that activity, Dr. Turow will lay out the beginnings of a sociology of resignation regarding surveillance that describes its industrial dynamics. And he will describe how research in this area is best carried out with a new understanding of the meaning and nature of “media research.”


Dr. Joseph Turow is the Robert Lewis Shayon Professor of Communication at the Annenberg School for Communication and the Associate Dean for Graduate Studies. Turow is an elected Fellow of the International Communication Association and was presented with a Distinguished Scholar Award by the National Communication Association. In 2010, the New York Times called him "the ranking wise man on some thorny new-media and marketing topics."

He has authored eleven books, edited five, and written more than 150 articles on mass media industries. His most recent books are The Aisles Have Eyes: How Retailers Track Your Shopping, Strip Your Privacy, and Define Your Power (Yale, 2017) and Media Today: Mass Communication in a Converging World (Routledge, Fall 2016; Serbian edition in two volumes, 2015).

Turow’s continuing national surveys of the American public on issues relating to marketing, new media, and society have received a great deal of attention in the popular press, as well as in the research community. He has been interviewed widely about his research, including by NPR's Fresh Air with Terry Gross, the Atlantic, the BBC, CBS News, and elsewhere. He has also written about media and advertising for the popular press, including The Atlantic, American Demographics magazine, The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, and The Los Angeles Times.

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Joanna Alario

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Dr. Joseph Turow

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University of Pennsylvania

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