News

National Science Foundation Awards Grant to Multi-Institutional Team, including Co-PI and CRC Fellow Dr. Lei Guo

By Jenna VigreOctober 6th, 2021

Congratulations to CRC Fellow Dr. Lei Guo, Associate Professor in Emerging Media Studies! Dr. Guo is a Co-Principal Investigator on a $750,000 interdisciplinary multi-institutional grant just awarded to Temple University. 

Guo will be working in conjunction with Eduard Dragut, the Principal Investigator and other co-principal investigators from Temple University and UIC, to utilize a mixed-methods approach to examining the life cycle of local journalism.  

The proposed system will identify through reaction-intention analyses and topic drift those stages when journalism’s intended effects evolve into positive or negative unintended outcomes. Unintended, negative communication effects of news include the triggering of uncivil, polarizing discourse, audience misinterpretation, the production of misinformation, and the perpetuation of false narratives (e.g., conspiracy theories).

In addition to this grant, Dr. Guo has published over 30 research papers in leading peer-reviewed journals such as the Journal of Communication, Communication Research, and Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly. Dr. Guo teaches “big data” analytics, interaction design, communication methods, and communication theory at the College of Communication.

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CRC fellow Dr. Chris Chao Su awarded the Boston University East Asia Studies Career Development Professorship

By Lindsy GoldbergSeptember 21st, 2021


Congratulations to CRC fellow Dr. Chris Chao Su for being awarded the East Asia Studies Career Development Professorship at Boston University!

This Professorship recognizes assistant professors in the College of Arts & Sciences, the Pardee School of Global Studies, the College of Communication, the College of Fine Arts, and the Questrom School of Business whose research is specific to East Asia, particularly China and Taiwan.

As the Assistant Professor of Emerging Media Studies at the College of Communication, Chris Su uses computational methods to explore and compare how media audiences take shape in an increasingly fragmented digital media environment, particularly within the context of China, Hong Kong, and the Greater China region, including Taiwan and Macau. He received his PhD in communication from the Chinese University of Hong Kong, his master’s degree in educational communication technology from New York University, and his bachelor’s degree in journalism from Wuhan University in China.

Communication Research Colloquium Series Hosts Dr. Arunima Krishna

By Cassidy LeakeSeptember 14th, 2021

 

Dr. Arunima Krishna, Assistant Professor of Public Relations, will be discussing public perceptions of and responses to corporate misconduct, this Thursday -- September 16th, 2021 from 3:30-4:30pm -- as part of the BU Communication Research Colloquium Series.

Dr. Krishna will be discussing the potential long-term effects of corporate misconduct allegations on a corporation, as well as on its’ internal and external publics. The lecture will address a research program intended to examine publics' multidimensional reactions to such allegations, and how corporations can mitigate these situations in a manner that limits their damage.

 

Letter from the Director: August 2021

By Michelle AmazeenAugust 2nd, 2021
Dr. Michelle Amazeen, CRC Director

This letter is part of a monthly series from the Director of the CRC, Dr. Michelle Amazeen

August 2021

As the new CRC Director, I am humbled and honored to be stepping into the role formerly held by co-Directors Dr. Mina Tsay-Vogel and Dr. James Cummings and prior to them, Dr. Michael Elasmar. Today, with people more dependent upon media than ever before, the importance of studying mediated communication has intensified. The world is fighting a viral pandemic, political extremism and polarization are on the rise, and new technologies and platforms are emerging at an unprecedented rate. This is all happening against what the World Health Organization has declared an infodemic – “deliberate attempts to disseminate wrong information to undermine the public health response and advance alternative agendas of groups or individuals.” The United States’ Surgeon General has issued a similar advisory, warning against misinformation.

After 18 months of a pandemic-driven hiatus, the CRC is rebooting and ready to provide our fellows with access to the latest biometric technology, social media listening tools, statistical software, and state-of-the art facilities. Lindsy Goldberg  joins us as our new Lab and Research Manager, helping to coordinate our lecture events, administer workshops, and provide other activities for our fellows – some of which may also be of interest to journalists, policy makers, and other visitors – as well as assist with facility and equipment rental inquiries.

First established in 1959 with Dr. Edward J. Robinson at the helm, early CRC research focused on the effects of television and comics. These were common areas of study in the growing field of mass communication research as there was great concern in the U.S. with what these new media (of the day) were doing to our youth and how these media were gratifying the needs of audiences. CRC fellows still produce research on television – in the effects tradition as well as from political economic perspectives and alternate paradigms – and on comics (the stand-up kind). But we also address emerging media technologies while identifying opportunities to improve civic engagement, media literacy, and prosocial uses of and representations in media. And given the current state of affairs, many of our fellows are also researching varying aspects of truth and misinformation.

As a new academic year begins, I welcome back our fellows as they continue to embark upon advancing theory and methods in addressing society’s communication challenges. For visitors, I invite you to look to the work of our CRC fellows for informative insights on battling misinformation and other efforts to conduct communication research for social good.

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How To Fight Vaccine Misinformation

By Lindsy GoldbergJuly 30th, 2021

Story by Andrew Thurston

Just after Christmas, a Wisconsin pharmacist attempted to destroy 570 doses of a COVID-19 vaccine, yanking precious vials from a storage refrigerator. According to multiple reports, he’d become convinced it could alter human DNA. It can’t. Nor, as other false rumors have claimed, will it allow the government to track you or fill your body with fetal tissue—but that hasn’t stopped vaccine misinformation from spreading online, spooking people concerned about potential side effects.

“Misinformation is more impactful than the correction” says Michelle A. Amazeen, an associate professor of mass communication.

For the past year, Amazeen and Arunima Krishna, an assistant professor of public relations, have explored the spread of vaccine misinformation and the efficacy of different efforts to halt it. Although their study started before COVID-19 tore across the United States—and their research has focused on vaccines in general—Amazeen says the coronavirus pandemic has “magnified how important the work is that we’re doing.”

Read the rest of this story on BU Today.