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New Media, Communication, and Society

A Fast, Straightforward Examination of Key Topics

Mary Ann Allison and Cheryl A. Casey

New Media, Communication, and Society is a fast, straightforward examination of key topics which will be useful and engaging for both students and professors. It connects students to wide-ranging resources and challenges them to develop their own opinions. Moreover, it encourages students to develop media literacy so they can speak up and  make a difference in the world. Short chapters with lots of illustrations encourage reading and provide a springboard for conversation inside and outside of the classroom. Wide-ranging topics spark interest. Chapters include suggestions for additional exploration, a media literacy exercise, and a point that is just for fun. Every chapter includes thought leaders, ranging from leading researchers to business leaders to entrepreneurs, from Socrates to Doug Rushkoff and Lance Strate to Bill Gates.

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19 Social Media and Mindful Multitasking (Cheryl A. Casey)

Extract

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CHAPTER 19

Social Media and Mindful Multitasking

Cheryl A. Casey

Dizzying distractions

Like just about anyone who spends a lot of time online for both work and personal reasons, I have a lot of things going at once. The web browser on my laptop is sure to have at least half a dozen tabs open. There are probably at least two web browser windows (if not two actual laptops) open, too.

I probably have some kind of document open—something I’m writing, a syllabus I’m revising, or a spreadsheet I’m updating. I manage a lot of these tasks in Trello, so that application will also be open.

Netflix might be streaming to the television, for some background noise. If not, then one of my browser tabs is streaming music or my iTunes program is open. Sitting next to my laptop is my smartphone, on which I’m receiving texts, news alerts, and task reminders—rarely phone calls.

My e-mail, Facebook, and Twitter accounts are practically guaranteed to always be open. While doing work, I check the latest updates on my social media pages. Sometimes I linger if an interesting news story catches my attention. The most dangerous distraction? Cute animals. I could be on a “cute puppies” search all afternoon, if I’m not careful.

Now that I’ve written out a description of my average experience with online media, I’m dizzy. How do...

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