Reflecting on the semester within new communication technologies, gave an insightful taste and overview of examining how technologies have developed throughout the 21st century and continue to do. It has been quite awhile in since my Graduate studies to investigate mass communication without attaching the communication technology without a theory, and solely examining it for its purposes for audiences. This class helped to review some familiar concepts but also learn additional studies that explore how users intend to use technology to enhance effective communication. Additionally, I learned the new advances communication technologies have demonstrated through the lens of my undergraduate peers and group members.
One of the concepts that I always find fascinating with communication technologies is the generational divide on if technology should be used in the classrooms. As a graduate student and instructional assistant, this causes much reflection and consideration on the technology I allow to be used in my own classroom, as well respecting my own professors’ wishes. Technology can cause many disruptions within classrooms and at times students will not focus on the task at hand, however it allows students to multi-task and even gives them more responsibility and accountability toward their actions when not participating in classroom discussions or assignments. The second concept I found most appealing is the debate on the sufficiency of finding love online, and how it differs from the millennial generation and the baby boomers. Although most are aware of the similarities and differences, there still needs much more research and explanations towards dating online without individuals being unaware of individuals who “catfish.”
Overall, the semester inspired new creative outlooks and even assisted with developing my own strategies towards my thesis. Likewise, it was nice to acquire more knowledge in the area of mass communication rather than primarily focusing on theory and method of conducted studies. I hope to take what I learned this semester and apply it towards my field and also my career in communication.
What are you? – Is the question I have received continuously throughout my life. After hearing the question infinitely, I began to wonder what is my ancestor lineage? You see my mother was adopted at a young age and it became difficult throughout the years to track our heritance, and as the curious person that I am; I wanted to learn more about where I come from. Luckily, I stumbled across a site called Ancestry.com, which discussed a system that had the capability to mapping out family trees and trace historical history regarding the country of origins one belongs to. Along with this, it even has the technology to discover connections of possible relatives around the world that match your parentage history by sharing, commenting, private messaging, or displaying your DNA results to other members of the website. This is truly a fascinating advancement that will assist the revelation your DNA but also create new frames of intercultural communication and perceptions.
Society at times possesses stereotypes that have been cultivated through media that may or may not effect their cognitive impressions of how someone should be or look like. Hence, this is when the “what are you” questions comes into play. Some may say the question is quite intrusive and display a sense of ignorance, however can we blame someone for asking this? Think about it for a second, every single application or survey we take asks in one form or another “what are you?” or “what do you identify with”? This selection has become normalize and has shaped society to place people in these boxes based on either first impressions of what one assumes an individual is from their appearance (ex: Black, White, Hispanic/Latino, Asian, or other). Now, the label “other” can at times cause create confusion and even frustration for individuals not being aware that not everyone is going to fit into the traditional selections, since many people can have multicultural or biracial ethnicities, and choose to identity as such. Thus, ancestry has assisted by building the idea that no one is 100% purely one ethnicity, but a formation of many distinctive qualities. Which establishes individuals to gain awareness to the diversity of humans and their heritage.
With this in mind, Ancestry.com has become the leading communication technology for redeveloping intercultural communication and perceptions, starting with individuals’ genealogy. It is the largest for-profit genealogy company in the world with a wide network of websites that provide genealogical, historical, and genetic genealogy records. One of the newest products Ancestry has supplied to its consumers is the Ancestry DNA kit. With already 7 million test takers, the DNA test continues assistance for people all over the world to discover who they are. The test assembles by completing the genetic makeup of an individual with the use of modern technology advances that allows this process to determine the region origin an individual belongs to. It has even recently updated their expansion five times more, while also having obtained the reward for best DNA testing service in 2017. Many members of ancestry have shared their experiences and results after taking the test. For instance, Kyle, a member of Ancestry, grew up knowing he was German, however the results indicates he wasn’t German at all but of Scottish decent! Similarly, Ancestry member Leslie encountered numerous questions about her ethnicity and the test help confirmed what she knew already. Ancestry has encouraged users to rediscover their heritage, confirm it, or even gain access to one’s legacy for the first time. In addition, it has forged new advances of not only communication technology but also through modifying the perceptions we may have of others and ourselves.