Deconstructing New Media ( The )

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Deconstructing new media (SNSs) Abstract This article explores the emergence of new media, and one of their forms --- social networking sites (SNSs), as well as deconstructs the implications brought by SNSs which are originally created to build interactive and connective relationship between individuals no matter age, gender, nationality, geographical regions, educational level, etc. in modern world. These implications are deconstructed into three dimensions, proposing according questions: 1) Do SNSs clear or blur the boundary of public or private? 2) Do SNSs bring about connection or disconnection? 3) How do SNSs affect individuals’ identity construction? Marshall McLuhan positioned medium as the message in one of his works Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man (1964), pointing out the massive influence of media and technologies on individuals and society. Nevertheless, having been developed to exchange messages, from taking years to reach the messages to audience, to the prevalence of the telegraph in the 1800s, which is regarded as the first type of communication technology to overcome the barrier of space and time (Rogers, 1986), media, thus, are no longer limited to face-to-face interaction, but a “newfound power to collapse time and space” (Baym, 2010). Based on this notion, the increasing demands of “smarter” and more interactive communication technologies make the term of “new media” emerge. In fact, that new media as communication technologies facilitate
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