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Posted on March 12, 2012 by

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In an era where the environment of wars, political and religious controversies and actions are heightened by the availability of technology, a new media ecology is born. Milissa Deitz highlights how a media ecosystem engenders a ‘phenomenon in which journalism is a joint project between journalists, non-journalists, accidental journalists, bloggers, politicians, celebrities, and the general public’. Indeed, this milestone in technology has allowed for the exposure of unseen documents by organizations such as Wikileaks however, this reform in the way technologies are used also has deadly implications. Upon the advancement of a new media culture intertwined with a highly politicized climate, there is a new breed of outsiders who are now insiders within society, some call them terrorists, I like to refer to them as the ‘radicalized’.

This communion of society, media and culture has allowed for the creation of a radicalized, extremist group with a global reach through the use of websites, YouTube and Twitter. Bruce Hoffman, an expert in the field of Terrorism, accentuates the severity of the radicalization process through media sources rendering how Osama Bin Laden spread his message through technologies and used it as a successful means to attain new recruits. Such groups use media as the centre stone to gain sympathy for a cause, spread extremist religious messages, and justify horrendous actions while also providing an alternate platform to mainstream media such as BBC or Al-Jazeera. Evidently, media ecology is formed through the use of cultural and religious ties within society that has been transcended by the ability of technology to determine and alter the minds of individuals. While there are other factors to take into consideration, i.e psychological, cultural background, political environment, there mere fact remains; there is a growing species that have risen from the Internet, a destructive force that has been enabled by the “phenomenon” that is technology.

References

Deitz, Milissa (2010) ‘The New Media Ecology’, On Line Opinion: Australia’s e- journal of social and political debate http://www.onlineopinion.com.au/view.asp? article=11410&page=1

Hoffman, Bruce. Inside Terrorism. New York. Columbia University Press, 1998. Chaper four ‘Religion and Terrorism’, pages 87-127

Hoskins, A. (2006) ‘Temporality, Proximity, and Security: Terror in a
Media Drenched Age’, International Relations, Vol. 20 No. 4, pp. 453-466

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