Media Switching and Media Ideologies
HON 235G Essay 2
“Breaking up is Hard to Do: Media Switching and Media Ideologies” by Ilana Gershon details Gershon’s research with college students on the Indiana University campus that took place between the years of 2007-2009. The general overview of the article is how media switching and the media ideologies of individual’s effects not only the language of a breakup but also plays a part of the narrative of the breakup and the feeling that go along with that narrative.
She defines media switching as change between the media that is used in the middle of a breakup dialog. Of the students that she interviewed this became an important aspect of the narrative that was given of the breakup. This also led to increasing confusion from one, or both parties, involved in the communication of the intentions of the other party. The narratives that she documented also took the tone of a pseudo investigate approach, even after the fact, to divine the meaning of the other parties’ words be it from text message, email, voice over the phone, or in one case mentioned a written letter on cream-colored stationary.
Building upon the documentation of the narratives of the breakup’s and the impressions given about media switching much can be grounded in an individual’s own media ideologies. The media ideologies for parties can be, and have been seen from some of the examples in the article, different and have different meanings. The parties’ views of what is or isn’t an appropriate use of a chosen media outside of the setting of a breakup conversation can impact when the communication of a breakup conversation and the utilization of a media, or switching to another media, is appropriate.
The majority of the individuals that were interviewed felt that the most appropriate media for a breakup conversation to take place was face to face verbal communication. From the examples that were given within the articulate, there seemed to be frequent mentioning of text messaging playing a role in the development of what was to become a breakup conversation. One problem that Gershon addresses with text messaging is that there isn’t a way to ensure that there is only one author of the text message. Text messages can be easily shared with friends or other individuals outside of the parties involved in the breakup communication.
The persons’ individual views of what is an appropriate use of...