Project #1: Observations
Purpose: To practice observing and documenting interaction in public space. To understand how mediated interactions figure into face-to-face life and shared spaces. To analyze how media use intersects with the creation of shared spaces.
Option 1: go to a public space, such as a coffee shop, bar or park, and take notes on people’s media usage. Visit the same place twice and spend at least an hour and a half there each time. Who do you see using media? How are they using it? What else are they doing? Compare and contrast how people using different media (e.g., books, phones, etc.) behave. How are their interactions the same/different?
Describe how the use of media shapes face-to-face relations or other features of the space.
Option 2: ask someone you know for permission to follow him/her around throughout the day and take notes on his/her use of media. Why does this person use media? When and where does this person use media? Do certain needs or experiences trigger media use? Do gratifications arise? Frustrations? Does this person multitask? How? Why? What did you learn about media use generally from this examination?
The more specific you are in your field notes, the more interesting your analysis will be. In your analysis, explain why you chose the location or person you did. Begin your analysis with a rich, detailed description of the location or person. Draw connections between course concepts and your observations and indicate consistencies or inconsistencies between the two. There are two components to this project: 1) field notes and 2) analysis. You should submit only your
analysis in hard copy at class on October 24. Your analysis of your field notes should be about 1000 words. On October 24, you will also make a three-minute class presentation on any aspect(s) of your project

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