Ramasubramanian earns Innovation in Theory Award

Newhouse Professor Srividya Ramasubramanian was honored with the International Communication Association’s Mass Communications Division Innovation in Theory Award. She won the award for her article “Critical Media Effects Framework: Bridging Critical Cultural Communication and Media Effects through Power, Intersectionality, Context, and Agency,” published in Journal of Communication in 2020.

Gutterman publishes paper in Loyola University of Chicago Law Journal

Roy Gutterman, associate professor and director of the Tully Center for Free Speech, authored the paper, “Masking Free Speech: The First Amendment Implications of Masks, Clothing, and Public Health,” which was published in Loyola University Chicago Law Journal.

Abstract

The article analyzes the constitutional status of mask requirements from a free-speech perspective, differentiating between the issue of
written words or logos on a mask as a form of speech, and the ability to keep one’s face uncovered as a speech right in itself. It examines the similarities and distinctions between challenges to mask mandates and other First Amendment objections to government restrictions related to clothing.

Survey of journalists, conducted by researchers at the Newhouse School, provides insights into the state of journalism today

A majority of U.S. journalists say they have been abused and threatened.

According to a survey conducted by researchers at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, a majority of journalists working in news media across the U.S. say they have faced verbal abuse, and about a third have received threats from a variety of sources—likely a reflection of bitter political divides, social media use and the stress of the COVID pandemic.

Female journalists were 7-to-14 times more likely to have experienced sexism and about 10 times more likely to have encountered threats of sexual violence, both online and offline.

However, journalists’ professional satisfaction in their work, and the degree of freedom they feel they have to do it, appear to be up slightly compared to a decade ago.

These are among the initial findings of “The American Journalist Under Attack.” The study, based on an online survey of 1,600 journalists in early 2022, was funded by the Newhouse School and the John Ben Snow Foundation. The authors are Lars Willnat, John Ben Snow Research Professor at the Newhouse School; David H. Weaver, Distinguished Professor Emeritus at Indiana University; and Cleve Wilhoit, Professor Emeritus at Indiana University. Survey findings will be published in a book titled “The American Journalist Under Attack: Media, Trust & Democracy.”

Key findings:

The survey continues the series of major national studies of U.S. journalists begun in 1971 by sociologist John Johnstone and continued in 1982, 1992, 2002 and 2013 by Weaver, Wilhoit and their colleagues at Indiana University. Few studies of an occupation as important as journalism can claim a half-century’s analytical perspective on the work, professional attitudes and ethics from large samples of the people working in it.

For more information about the study, visit www.theamericanjournalist.org or contact Willnat at lwillnat@syr.edu.

Doctoral candidates co-author paper on crisis communications strategies

Newhouse doctoral students Yu Tian and Jeongwon Yang co-authored the paper, “Deny or bolster? A comparative study of crisis communication strategies between Trump and Cuomo in COVID-19” in the Public Relations Review journal.

Abstract

This study applied the situational crisis communication theory (SCCT) in political crisis communication amidst the COVID-19 outbreak, a “sticky crisis” that is longitudinal and politicized, thereby involving multiple challenges and complexities. Considering the critical role of Twitter in the information transmissions during the ongoing pandemic, this study considered politicians’ tweets as a proxy to access their crisis communication strategies and conducted a systematic content analysis to critically evaluate COVID-19 crisis communication strategies of two politicians, Trump and Cuomo, according to their perceived day-to-day circumstances during COVID-19. Three strategies categorized by SCCT, denydiminish, and bolstering, surfaced with significance for both Trump and Cuomo. A new strategy specific to the political context, cohesion, was also identified. In addition, significant differentiation was observed in the strategic narratives between Trump and Cuomo, which reveals the evolving political dynamics in disease representation and crisis messaging. For example, Trump emphasized social exclusion and accusations of Democrats whilst Cuomo stressed care for vulnerable and minority groups and compassion delivery. Moreover, deny strategy, especially accusing other races, significantly boosted audience engagement for Trump. The results are discussed in relation to the idiosyncrasy of the complex COVID-19 pandemic and crisis communication in the political realm. Our findings demonstrate practical implications including online crisis messaging recommendations that foster public trust during politicized and polarized health emergencies and cultivate grounds for information exchange beyond partisan barriers.

Gutterman authors paper on litigation and liability with regard to Sacha Baron Cohen’s mockumentary work

Roy Gutterman, associate professor of magazine, news and digital journalism and director of the Tully Center for Free Speech, authored the paper, “Liable, Naaaht: The Mockumentary: Litigation, Liability and the First Amendment in the Works of Sacha Baron Cohen.” The paper was published in Harvard Law School’s Journal of Sports & Entertainment Law.

Newhouse doctoral candidate wins Outstanding TA Award

Jeongwon Yang

Doctoral candidate Jeongwon Yang received the Outstanding TA award from Syracuse University’s Graduate School, recognizing teaching assistants who have made distinguished contributions to Syracuse university through excellency in teaching or assisting senior faculty members in high-enrollment courses.

“I would definitely like to teach in the future. I learned so much from being a TA as I learned what I am good at and what I can improve in the future. Teaching the course myself and receiving students’ feedback, I had a chance to try different teaching methods to create an engaging and inclusive learning environment,” says Yang.

Winners will receive a personalized gift from the Graduate School. Congratulations, Jeongwon!

Hua Jiang named Newhouse Endowed Chair of Public Communications

Hua Jiang, associate professor of public relations at the Newhouse School, has been named the Newhouse Endowed Chair of Public Communications for 2022-25. The position is awarded to a distinguished faculty member whose accomplishments significantly advance the school’s reputation in research and creative activity.

Jiang

“Dr. Jiang is an outstanding scholar, and this endowed position will allow her to elevate her already outstanding work,” says Newhouse dean Mark J. Lodato. “We are fortunate to have her as a part of the Newhouse School faculty.”

Jiang holds a Ph.D. in communication from the University of Maryland, College Park. Her research interests include employee communication, social media engagement, corporate social responsibility, corporate social advocacy and the use of artificial intelligence in mental health campaigns.

Jiang has published more than 50 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters, with her work appearing in leading refereed journals like Journal of Public Relations Research, Public Relations Review, Communication Research, International Journal of Business Communication, Environmental Communication, Journal of Applied Communication Research, Journal of Product and Brand Management, Journal of Broadcasting and Electronic Media, Journal of Health Communication and Telematics and Informatics, among others. She serves on the editorial board of the top three public relations journals: Journal of Public Relations Research, Public Relations Review and Public Relations Journal (PRSA journal). She has received over 10 top paper awards and research recognitions from national and international flagship communication associations.

As the endowed chair, Jiang will work on her project, Strategic Mental Health Campaigns: Audiences, Messages, and Channels. The study looks at mental health problems as public health challenges, including the help-seeking behaviors of those with mental health issues, and public advocacy for mental health policy. Jiang will examine communication-related factors that contribute to these behavioral outcomes and use research findings to inform future communication campaigns. She will target diverse audiences, explore messaging strategies central to effective communication campaigns and leverage communication channels that empower affected communities.

“I hope to produce research that benefits our students, the Newhouse School, Syracuse University and the larger community. I am enormously grateful for this incredible honor,” Jiang says. 

Giglio admitted to Television Academy

Keith Giglio, associate professor of television, radio and film, has been admitted to the Television Academy.

For the past five years, Giglio has written and produced movies for television networks and streaming services, including “Reba McEntire’s Christmas in Tune,” “Dear Christmas,” “Christmas Reservations” and “A Very Nutty Christmas.” Giglio’s wife and writing partner, Juliet Giglio, is also a member. She is an associate professor of English at SUNY Oswego.

The couple’s debut novel, “The Summer of Christmas,” chronicles the making of a Christmas movie in the Finger Lakes. It is due for release this summer.

Munno, Craig and Richards co-author paper on ethics in student journalism

Greg Munno, assistant professor of magazine, news and digital journalism (MND) co-authored the paper, “Student journalists exhibit different mindsets but agree on the need for truthful reporting” with Megan Craig, adjunct, and Alex Richards, assistant professor, both in MND. The paper was published in Media Practice and Education.

Abstract

This study investigates the ethical orientations journalism students bring to the profession they seek to enter. Using Q methodology to explore the participants’ subjective conceptions of journalism, we map their attitudes and beliefs about journalistic norms and ethics. Participants (n = 54) sorted 28 statements about journalism from ‘most like’ their journalistic mindset to ‘most unlike.’ Factor analysis identified two distinct mindsets among the participants, one expressing a traditional journalistic mindset, the other embracing a more involved, vocal journalism. Yet both factors expressed strong support for many facets of traditional journalism and embraced an orientation towards the search for truth and the need for truthful reporting.

Concepcion co-authors paper on hybrid and online learning environments

RC Concepcion, digital post-production specialist in visual communications, co-authored the paper, “Thriving in ‘The New Normal:’ Student-Centered Practices, Design, and Tools of Hybrid and Online Learning Environments” with Christopher J. McCollough, Jamie Ward and Adrienne A. Wallace. The paper was published in the Journal of Public Relations Education.

Abstract

Online learning became our new normal over two weeks in Spring 2020 and remains a critical component for instruction at many institutions as the process of vaccination and return to campuses continues. The rapid shift brought technological integration, pedagogical shifts, and evolution in assessment. This left many educators and students overwhelmed, frustrated, and confused in the process. Originally presented in a panel as part of the 2021 AEJMC Public Relations Division’s Virtual Conference, this team of educators in public relations and media production offer insights on online instructional design and share tools and resources valuable to public relations education used during the pandemic response, with applications beyond the pandemic. In addition to providing a review of several tools, this article will share perspective on managing diverse learning styles, content delivery for diverse platforms, ensuring accessibility for all learners, class engagement, and assessment, while providing some personal reflection on their experiences in offering traditional public relations offerings during the pandemic.