Digitization: New trajectories of mediatization?

In Handbook of Communication:Mediatization of Communication. Berlin, Tyskland: pp. Pages: 297–322 (2014)
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The purpose of this chapter is to clarify what the concept of digital media might add to the understanding of mediatization and what the concept of mediatization might add to the understanding of digital media. It is argued that digital media open an array of new trajectories in human communication, which were not anticipated in previous conceptualizations of media and mediatization. If digital media are to be included, the concept of mediatization has to be revised and new parameters must be integrated in the concept of media. At the same time, it is argued that the concept of mediatization still provides a variety of perspectives of relevance to the study of digital media. The claim that the concept of mediatization has to be reinterpreted can only be legitimized if digital media are considered distinct from the media formerly referred to in mediatization theory. Such characteristics are presented and digital media are defined in section 2, while section 1 is devoted to theories of mediatization and the notion of media. Section 3 analyses the relation between mediatization and digitization. Finally, in section 4, medium theory is revisited with a view to harvest some missing fruits in contemporary mediatization theory.

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Niels Finnemann
University of Copenhagen


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