The latest Issue of Westminster Papers in Communication and Culture has just been launched. Edited by Dr. Anastasia Denisova the issue examines viral media within the context of politics and soceity.
In the opening editorial by Denisova she questions what we mean by ‘Viral’, stating that “‘Viral’ is indeed an ‘imperfect term for rapid spread of information’ but viral media items still have the potential to deliver ‘progressive ideas’. This editorial notes how the contents of the issue plays host to a variety of fresh perspectives in its themes such as corrupted play, journalistic choice, viral politics, voice and nostalgia. It also notes, referring to the issue’s interview with Kishonna Gray, the dangers of platforms simply standing aside to allow toxic viral messaging and racism. It may be impossible to counter ‘morally ambivalent’ memes with regulatory or any other kind of ‘vaccines’ though it might, the author concludes, ‘be reasonable to limit the expanse of the viral flows and to question the algorithmic patterns of digital platforms’ even as memes’ popularity and resistance to total marketing control preserve their continuing (if somewhat tarnished) reputation as a ‘digital darling’.”
Full contents of the Issue
How to Define ‘Viral’ for Media Studies?