The last three decades have witnessed a dramatic acceleration in the use, demand, and need for telecommunications, data communication, and mass communication transmitted and integrated into networks. Through a synthesis of contemporary theories about modernization, this book offers a broad-ranging introduction to the 'network' society in all its aspects.
· Analyzes the new media in all their technical, economic, political, sociological, cultural and psychological aspects.
· Examines the new media in terms of their impact on both public policy and private life.
· Compares legal and policy initiatives in North America, Europe, Eastern Asia, and the Third World.
· Enables the reader to critical assess the 'hype' which surrounds the Internet and other new media.
In comparison to the boundless speculation accompanying the new media, this book offers a well-balanced but critical overview of the telecommunications revolution. In providing an interdisciplinary yet highly accessible introduction to the field, it will be essential reading for all students of media and communication studies.
About the Author
Jan A.G.M. van Dijk is an internationally recognized expert in the field of communication, his specific interest being new media studies. Van Dijk is the author of The Network Society: Social Aspects of the New Media (SAGE, 1999) and co-editor of Digital Democracy: Issues of Theory and Practice (SAGE, 2000). He is an advisor of the European Commission in the Information Society Forum. As a professor of Communication Science at Twente University, van Dijk teaches and develops the sociology of the information society, in particular the social-cultural, political, and organizational aspects.