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Reflections of a media ecology flâneuse: On mediated urban spaces and places1

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Cities are rich informative environments. This has been dubbed the urban century with, for the first time in human history, more than half the world’s population living in cities. Cities are global, smart, connected, inclusive, livable, green, sustainable, mega and communicative. The urban experience is increasingly influenced by technology. From photography to the mobile phone, augmented reality and the GPS, the person/environment relationship is altered by media technologies. Urban communication is a growing field examining communication in urban sites and urban influences on communication. What is the relationship between media ecology and urban communication? From Benjamin and McLuhan to Postman and Strate, this article explores the connections between urban communication and media ecology and suggests urban spaces and places call out for the attention of media ecologists.
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Keywords: absent presence; digital bias; flâneur; information environments; mediatized city; urban communication

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 2018

More about this publication?
  • EME explores the relationships between media, technology, symbolic form, communication, consciousness, and culture. Its scope is interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary. Media ecology provides a rich philosophical, historical and practical context for studying our increasingly technological and mediated society and culture with an emphasis on historical context.
    Media ecology scholarship emphasizes a humanistic approach to understanding media, communication, and technology, with special emphasis on the ways in which we have been and continue to be shaped and influenced by our inventions and innovation. The Media ecology approach is predicated on understanding that media, symbols, and technologies play a leading role in human affairs, and function as largely invisible environments affecting the way we think, feel, act, and organize ourselves collectively.
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