March 12, 2018

Symposium Ends with Suggestions for Processing Social Network Information

Dr. Bree McEwan, Director of Communication and Technology at DePaul University, will present a program titled "Filtered through Networks: How social technologies facilitate relationships that change how we perceive information, data, and reality" on Wednesday, Mar. 21 at 7:30 p.m. in Ashland University's Hawkins-Conard Student Center Auditorium.

From fake news and filter bubbles, to your friend’s misspelled meme, and your cousin’s petition -- comprehending information diffused online through social networks is an important component for understanding debates on a wide range of issues. While it is important to think critically about our information consumption and media diets, other factors, particularly who information comes from and how we form those sources are important factors in the way we see the world and ourselves.

Dr. McEwan, the author of Navigating New Media Networks, will discuss the dynamics between media consumers, information ecology, social network platforms, and cognitive processes. McEwan will offer explanations and suggestions to help competently process the large swaths of information we encounter every day from our social networks.

The program is an event in the Ashland University College of Arts and Sciences’ biennial Symposium Against Indifference. The theme for this year’s series is “Building Bridges Through Dialogue.” Dr. McEwan's visit is co-sponsored by the Department of Journalism and Digital Media and is free and open to the public.

Dr. McEwan (PhD, Arizona State University) focuses her research on the intersection of interpersonal communication and communication technologies. Her work primarily focuses on the management and maintenance of social relationships through communication technologies such as social media and text messaging as well as considering the effects social communication has on societal structure (and vice versa). Dr. McEwan is the author of "Navigating New Media Networks: Understanding and Managing Communication Challenges." In addition she has published articles examining the social effects of communication technology in Communication Monographs, Computers in Human Behavior, Cyberpsychology, Social Networking, and Behavior, and New Media and Society. Her recent projects focus on measurement issues in communication technology research and developing a theory of the diffusion of issues information via social media.