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Studies conducted over several years in Israel explored social aspects of the developing mobile phone phenomenon. Using a variety of quantitative and qualitative methods the research examined the place that the 'Wonder Phone' has been occupying in many facets of life. It was concluded that the mobile is 'not only talk' - as a recent campaign slogan of one of Israel's mobile providers suggests. Rather, it is a medium through which Israelis define their gendered and national identities; it offers an experience of 'being there' and a security net holding family members and loved ones together, especially in terms of terror and war; and it provides a lifeline during existential crises around which rituals of mourning are crystallized.In analyzing the mobile phone as it is contextualized in Israeli society, two opposing social forces can clearly be seen: on the one hand, the mobile is an expression of late modernity and globalization; but on the other hand it is recruited as a tool - as well as a symbol - for the expression of locality and patriotic sentiments.
The result of years of critical analysis of Israeli media law, this book argues that the laws governing Israeli electronic media are structured to limit the boundaries of public discourse. Amit M. Schejter posits the theory of a "mute democracy," one in which the media are designed to provide a platform for some voices to be heard over others. While Israel's institutions may be democratic, and while the effect of these policies may be limited, this book contends that free speech in Israel is institutionally muted to ensure the continued domination of the Jewish majority and its preferred interpretation of what Israel means as a Jewish-democratic state. Analyzing a wide range of legal documents recorded in Israel from 1961 to 2007, Muting Israeli Democracy demonstrates in scrupulous detail how law and policy are used to promote the hegemonic national culture through the constraints and obligations set on electronic media.
The Routledge Companion to Global Internet Histories brings together research on the diverse Internet histories that have evolved in different regions, language cultures and social contexts across the globe. While the Internet is now in its fifth decade, the understanding and formulation of its histories outside of an anglophone framework is still very much in its infancy. From Tunisia to Taiwan, this volume emphasizes the importance of understanding and formulating Internet histories outside of the anglophone case studies and theoretical paradigms that have thus far dominated academic scholarship on Internet history. Interdisciplinary in scope, the collection offers a variety of historical lenses on the development of the Internet: as a new communication technology seen in the context of older technologies; as a new form of sociality read alongside previous technologically mediated means of relating; and as a new media "vehicle" for the communication of content.
Media ownership and concentration has major implications for politics, business, culture, regulation, and innovation. It is also a highly contentious subject of public debate in many countries around the world. In Italy, Silvio Berlusconi's companies have dominated Italian politics. Televisa has been accused of taking cash for positive coverage of politicians in Mexico. Even in tiny Iceland, the regulation of media concentration led to that country's first and only public referendum. Who Owns the World's Media? moves beyond the rhetoric of free media and free markets to provide a dispassionate and data-driven analysis of global media ownership trends and their drivers. Based on an extensive data collection effort from scholars around the world, the book covers thirteen media industries, including television, newspapers, book publishing, film, search engines, ISPs, wireless telecommunication and others, across a ten to twenty-five year period in thirty countries. In many countries--like Egypt, China, or Russia--little to no data exists and the publication of these chapters will become authoritative resources on the subject in those regions. After examining each country, Noam and his collaborators offer comparisons and analysis across industries, regions, and development levels. They also calculate overall national concentration trends beyond specific media industries, the market share of individual companies in the overall national media sector, and the size and trends of transnational companies in overall global media. This definitive global study of the extent and impact of media concentration will be an invaluable resource for communications, public policy, law, and business scholars in doing research and also for media, telecom, and IT companies and financial institutions in the private sector.
For a growing number of British holidaymakers, Cuba is a Caribbean paradise, but it is also a land of cutbacks and economic instability. Stephen Smith comes to live on the island, and his search for the real Cuba inevitably becomes a search for Fidel Castro too. Before meeting his quarry, Smith travels extensively through the 'land of miracles' in an old American automobile. His highly-personalised account features a bloody initiation into a voodoo-like cult, dining on giant rat, and checking into the Love Hotel. And he goes on manoeuvres in the Everglades with armed, but not especially competent, Cuban exiles dreaming of a second Bay of Pigs. With disarming wit and considerable insight, Stephen Smith investigates a country where communism and voodoo coexist, and where the influence of its leader of forty years continues to throw a long shadow.
After broadband access, what next? What role do metrics play in understanding “information societies”? And, more important, in shaping their policies? Beyond counting people with broadband access, how can economic and social metrics inform broadband policies, help evaluate their outcomes, and create useful models for achieving national goals? This timely volume not only examines the traditional questions about broadband, like availability and access, but also explores and evaluates new metrics more applicable to the evolving technologies of information access. Beyond Broadband Access brings together a stellar array of media policy scholars from a wide range of disciplines—economics, law, policy studies, computer science, information science, and communications studies. Importantly, it provides a well-rounded, international perspective on theoretical approaches to databased communications policymaking in the Americas, Europe, Asia, and Africa. Showcasing a diversity of approaches, this invaluable collection helps to meet myriad challenges to improving the foundations for communications policy development.
Kids ask the darndest things . . . and here are the answers—all in one helpful book! Anyone who has ever been a kid, raised a kid, or spent any time with kids knows that asking questions is a critical part of growing up. Kids have curious minds and they come up with some very interesting questions. But the truth is adults don't always know the answers. The Handy Answer Book for Kids (and Parents) comes to the rescue. Written with a child's imagination in mind, this easy-to-understand book is a launching pad for curious young minds and a life raft for parents at wits end. It addresses nearly 800 queries with enough depth and detail to both satisfy the curiosity of persistent young inquisitors and provide parents with a secure sense of a job well done. It'll equip every parent for those difficult, absurd, or sometimes funny questions from their kids, such as Is there life on Mars? Do rivers ever dry up? Why are there wars? Is there such a thing as a funny bone? Why do dogs bark? Why is the sky blue? Why do people have to grow old? Why do people speak different languages?

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