Course Glossary and Definitions


  • AppleSauce!: a popular saying used to convey happiness or success. Usually said following a great success or positive situation. Synonyms include "sick!", "awesome!" and "dirty".

  • Blog - a blog (a contraction of the term "Web log") is a Web site, usually maintained by an individual with regular entries of commentary, descriptions of events, or other material such as graphics or video. It is an element of new media that allows active user participation, encouraging many-to-many communication.

  • Castell's network enterprise model(5):Internal decentralized firms, Multilocations, small/medium firms linked with large firms, Joint ventures and Network of synchronous communication

  • Cluetrain Manifesto:
    - book about communication and business that included 95 theses on the changes in marketing
    e.g. 1) Markets are conversations
    2) Markets consist of human beings, not demographic sectors...

  • Cyber optimists - assert that information technology is a positive force in the world today. It is associated with economic growth, health, democracy, and other features that typically characterize societal development.
  • Cyber pessimists - do not disagree with these sentiments, they assert that rich countries maintain control over information technology and insure its unequal distribution globally. Thus, rich countries utilize information technology for their own benefit, at the expense of poor countries.
  • Cyberspace: Is the global domain of electro-magnetics accessed through electronic technology and exploited through the modulation of electromagnetic energy to achieve a wide range of communication and control system capabilities. The term is rooted in the science of cybernetics and Norbert Wiener’s pioneering work in electronic communication and control science, a forerunner to current information theory and computer science. Through its electro-magnetic nature, cyberspace integrates a number of capabilities (sensors, signals, connections, transmissions, processors, controllers) and generates a virtual interactive experience accessed for the purpose of communication and control regardless of a geographic location.
  • Computer: The ability to store and execute lists of instructions called programs makes computers extremely versatile and distinguishes them from calculators. Early electronic computers were the size of a large room, consuming as much power as several hundred modern personal computers (PC). Modern computers are based on tiny integrated circuits and are millions to billions of times more capable while occupying a fraction of the space. Today, simple computers may be made small enough to fit into a wristwatch and be powered from a watch battery. Personal computers, in various forms, are icons of the Information Age and are what most people think of as "a computer"; however, the most common form of computer in use today is the embedded computer.
  • Cascading Style Sheets (CSS): Is a style sheet language used to describe the presentation (that is, the look and formatting) of a document written in a markup language. Its most common application is to style web pages written in HTML and XHTML, but the language can be applied to any kind of XML document, including SVG and XUL.
  • Capitalism: is an economic system in which wealth, and the means of producing wealth, are privately owned and controlled rather than commonly, publicly, or state-owned and controlled. Through capitalism, the land, labor, and capital are owned, operated, and traded by private individuals either singly or jointly, and investments, distribution, income, production, pricing and supply of goods, commodities and services are determined by voluntary private decision in a market economy. A distinguishing feature of capitalism is that each person owns his or her own labor and therefore is allowed to sell the use of it to employers. In a "capitalist state", private rights and property relations are protected by the rule of law of a limited regulatory framework. In the modern capitalist state, legislative action is confined to defining and enforcing the basic rules of the market, though the state may provide some public goods and infrastructure.
  • Cultural Identity: is the identity of a group or culture, or of an individual as far as one is influenced by one's belonging to a group or culture. Cultural identity is similar to and has overlaps with, but is not synonymous with, identity politics.
  • Cyberbalkanization— political discussions on Net that lead to fragmentation and polarization rather than consensus

  • Digital Divide: A Definition

    • Differential access to and use of the Internet
    • Distribution of benefits of digital technology globally and within societies
    • Gap between those who have access to Internet and those who don’t
    • Involves physical imbalances in access as well as imbalances in skills or resources to participate in today's digital society
  • Democracy: is a form of government in which power is held directly or indirectly by citizens under a free electoral system. In political theory, democracy describes a small number of related forms of government and also a political philosophy. Even though there is no universally accepted definition of 'democracy', there are two principles that any definition of democracy includes. The first principle is that all members of the society (citizens) have equal access to power and the second that all members (citizens) enjoy universally recognized freedoms and liberties.

  • Economic globalization: the transnational organization of capitalist firms, production, finance, services, trade, investment and markets (Barney, The Network Society, p.71)
  • Egocasting – Publishing a personal blog or Web page in order to broadcast one's own attributes and qualities.
  • Electronic Mail: often abbreviated as e-mail, or E-Mail is any method of creating, transmitting, or storing primarily text-based human communications with digital communications systems. Today nearly and form of media (Video and Audio) can be sent throught E-mail. E-mail was quickly extended to become network e-mail, allowing users to pass messages between different computers by 1966 or earlier.
  • Embedded system: is a special-purpose computer system designed to perform one or a few dedicated functions, often with real-time computing constraints. It is usually embedded as part of a complete device including hardware and mechanical parts. In contrast, a general-purpose computer, such as a personal computer, can do many different tasks depending on programming. Embedded systems control many of the common devices in use today.
  • Flexi-workers - the idea behind flexi-workers, sometimes called supplementaries, is that they are full-time employees, with all the skills and know-how of other workers, yet only ever called in when they're needed, such as during hectic periods of the year or during an emergency.
  • Fordism is the mass, mechanized, production of standardized goods in a rigid and segmented process. Human labour is reduced to the repetitive execution of specialized, routinized tasks (Network Society, p.10-11) derived from Henry Ford's institution of assembly line car manufacturing. It is characterized by uniformity and less customization.

  • Global Neo-liberalism paradigms(4): Privitize public enterprises, liberalize markets, the states goal to regulate public interests against market failure, commercialization/corportations
  • Globalization: is the process of transformation of local or regional phenomena into global ones. It can be described as a process by which the people of the world are unified into a single society and function together.

  • Hybridization: when two things come together to create something new eg. existing technology merges with a new innovation

  • Informationalism - society is characterized by the power embedded in information technology, at the heart of an entirely new technological paradigm, which is based on the augmentation of the human capacity of information processing and communication made possible by the revolutions in microelectronics, software, and genetic engineering.
  • Industrial society – is a society integrated by a complex network of occupational specialties supporting the manufacture of material goods.
  • Information revolution - describes current economic, social and technological trends. It is a phrase we use to refer to the dramatic changes taking place during the last half of the 20th century in which service jobs (ranging from high technology, highly skilled professions to low-skill jobs like short-order cook) are more common than jobs in manufacturing or agriculture. The product of skilled professionals is the information or knowledge they provide.
  • Information society: the replacement of the "production of 'material values' with the mass production and circulation of 'information values'...yielding increased leisure and new information-based industries." (Barney, The Network Society, p.7)
  • Information hoarding: The storage of information, often seen as the 'enemy of growth and innovation.
  • Interactivity: All human communication involves interaction between people. It also refers to the capacity of digital communications media to enable a high degree of intervention and choice by users conversing the manner in which they receive information. (Barney, The Network Society, p.64)
  • Instrumentalism: technologies are neutral tools. Also, outcomes depend on how technologies are used
  • Information: The age which information can be exchanged freely in ways that have not been accessible before. This age is somewhat connected to the digital age in which information and knowledge is made accessible.
  • Internet: is a global network of interconnected computers, enabling users to share information along multiple channels. Typically, a computer that connects to the Internet can access information from a vast array of available servers and other computers by moving information from them to the computer's local memory. The same connection allows that computer to send information to servers on the network; that information is in turn accessed and potentially modified by a variety of other interconnected computers. A majority of widely accessible information on the Internet consists of inter-linked hypertext documents and other resources of the World Wide Web (WWW). Computer users typically manage sent and received information with web browsers; other software for users' interface with computer networks includes specialized programs for electronic mail, online chat, file transfer and file sharing.
  • Internet Service Providers: called Internet access provider or IAP is a company that offers its customers access to the Internet. The ISP connects to its customers using a data transmission technology appropriate for delivering Internet Protocol data grams, such as dial-up, DSL, cable modem or dedicated high-speed interconnects.



  • Key Messages: molds people to perform some action. Usually 3-5 things that you want to get across in your campaign.

  • Measurement: measuring if your goals and objectives were achieved/successful.
  • Manga: comics and print cartoons, generally of Japanese origin. Ex: Astro Boy - A story about an adventures of a fictional robot by Japanese.
  • Majority Rule: is a decision rule that selects one of two alternatives, based on which has more than half the votes. It is the binary decision rule used most often in influential decision-making bodies, including the legislatures of democratic nations. Some scholars have recommended against the use of majority rule, at least under certain circumstances, due to an ostensible trade-off between the benefits of majority rule and other values important to a democratic society.
  • A Market economy: is an economic system based on the division of labor in which the prices of goods and services are determined in a free price system set by supply and demand. This is often contrasted with a planned economy, in which a central government determines the price of goods and services using a fixed price system. Market economies are contrasted with mixed economy where the price system is not entirely free but under some government control that is not extensive enough to constitute a planned economy.
  • Narrowcasting - to transmit creative content confined to the interests of a specific group of viewers or target market.
  • Network enterprise is a deterritorialized (though sometimes regionalized) network of networks of economic nodes, a formation whose architecture resembles that of the advanced digital communication technologies that make it possible. It is the corporation between different components of different firms, networking among themselves for the duration of the project (Network Society, p.84)

  • Network Society is a society in which a combination of social and media networks shapes its prime mode of organization and most important structures at all levels (individual, organizational and societal). This type of society can be compared to a mass society that is shaped by groups, organizations and communities ('masses') organized in physical co-presence.

  • Examples: Web sites such as 'Facebook' and 'MySpace' are prime examples of Network Society at work. These sites allow people all over the world to communicate through digital means without face to face contact. Other means include instant messenger servers, such as AIM and IChat, and email servers, including Hotmail, Yahoo Mail, AOL Mail, and many others. All of these web services provide means for people to communicate without personal contact. This demonstrates how the ideas of society changing will affect the persons we communicate over time.
  • Network Economy: This stems from a key attribute - products and services are created and value is added through social networks operating on large or global scales. This is in sharp contrast to industrial-era economies, in which ownership of physical or intellectual property stems from its development by a single enterprise. Business models for capturing ownership rights for value embedded in products and services created by social networks are being explored. May be viewed from a number of perspectives: transition from the industrial economy, digital and information infrastructure, global scale, value networks, and intellectual property rights.
  • New media: interactive, peered and networked discussion forums, blogs, YouTube, wikis, games many-to-many communication
  • Outsourcing is subcontracting a process, such as product design or manufacturing to a third-party company (part of deterritorialization and globalization in the information Age)
  • Outcome: it's the measurable outcome, or what you are going to do.
  • The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD):Originated in 1948 as the Organization for European Economic Co-operation (OEEC), led by Robert Marjolin of France, to help administer the Marshall Plan for the reconstruction of Europe after World War II. It is an international organization of 30 countries that accept the principles of representative democracy and free-market economy. Most OECD members are high-income economies with a high HDI and are regarded as developed countries. The organization is a setting in which governments can compare policy experiences, seek answers to common problems, identify good practices, and co-ordinate domestic and international policies. The mandate of the OECD is broad, covering economic, environmental, and social issues.

  • Post-Fordism involves economies of scope (specialized orders, customization and just-in-time deliveries), variable product types, individual multitasking, limited individual judgment, and so forth (Network Society, p.13). Products are more individualized (for example, Dell Computers)
  • Panopticon : is a prison architectural design by Jeremy Bentham which enables observers (prisoner guards) to view spectators (prisoners) but not be seen. It is related to the transition from punishment to discipline, as this prison model led to internalized power structures, in which people self-regulate and behave due to the possibility of being observed. The idea behind the Panopticon is "see without being seen".
  • Polarization: the exclusion of a various group form the society eg. generic labour excluded from the new information society because unskilled and disposable
  • Postmodernism - a late 20th century stream of social philosophy that attempts to describe a condition or state of being, while radically undermining traditional notions of the constitution of truth and reality. (p. 16)
  • Public Relations: PR is concerned with getting the information out there.It is 'earned media,' which is earning the right to be in the editorial media, and to be objective versus paid media or advertising. In public relations, you need to see an ad one time to let the message sink in as compared to 7 times for advertising ads.
  • Privacy: is the ability of an individual or group to seclude themselves or information about themselves and thereby reveal themselves selectively. The boundaries and content of what is considered private differ among cultures and individuals, but share basic common themes. Privacy is sometimes related to anonymity, the wish to remain unnoticed or unidentified in the public realm. When something is private to a person, it usually means there is something within them that is considered inherently special or personally sensitive.
  • Politics: is the process by which groups of people make decisions. The term is generally applied to behaviour within civil governments, but politics has been observed in all human group interactions, including corporate, academic, and religious institutions. It consists of "social relations involving authority or power and refers to the regulation of a political unit, and to the methods and tactics used to formulate and apply policy.



  • RFID: radio frequency identification- identification method through tags eg. prsioners wore wristbands to detect their activities
  • Robot is a virtual or mechanical artificial agent. The word robot can refer to both physical robots and virtual software agents, but the latter are usually referred to as bots.There is no consensus on which machines qualify as robots, but there is general agreement among experts and the public that robots tend to do some or all of the following: move around, operate a mechanical limb, sense and manipulate their environment, and exhibit intelligent behavior, especially behavior which mimics humans or other animals.

  • Social Divide: Digital divide within societies = uneven distribution of technological opportunities
  • Social Media: the democratization of information, transforming people from content readers into content publishers. It is the shift from a broadcast mechanism to a many-to-many model, rooted in conversations between authors, people, and peers.
  • Sloanism: manage consumption through collecting and processing data about consumers behaviour
    Factors: income, race, ethnicity, age, gender
  • Social Constructivism: Impacts of technology depending on social constructions.
  • Social exclusion - The process whereby certain groups are pushed to the margins of society and prevented from participating fully by virtue of their poverty, low education or inadequate lifeskills. This distances them from job, income and education opportunities as well as social and community networks. They have little access to power and decision-making bodies and little chance of influencing decisions or policies that affect them, and little chance of bettering their standard of living.
  • Social polarization - is associated with the segregation within a society that may emerge from income inequality, real-estate fluctuations, economic displacements etc. and result in such differentiation that would consist of various social groups, from high-income to low-income.
  • Social Shaping Perspective - technologies are continuously remade by what users do with them. New media technologies both shape and are shaped by their social economic and cultural contexts.
  • Sovereignty refers to the holding and exercise of supreme political power, the power to make judgements and the power to act to enforce compliance with those judgements
  • Space of flows - is a high level cultural conceptual abstraction of space, time, and their dynamic interaction with society in the digital age. It was created by Manuel Castells in order to "reconceptualize new forms of spatial arrangements under the new technological paradigm". It is a new type of space, enabling synchronicity and real-time interaction without physical proximity.
  • Substanvism- technology embodies specific values & ways of being in the world.
  • Surveillance: is the monitoring of the behavior of a person or group of people, often in a surreptitious manner. Although the word surveillance in French literally means "watching over", the term is often used for all forms of observation or monitoring, not just visual observation. It is commonly used to describe observation from a distance by means of electronic equipment (such as CCTV cameras), or interception of electronically transmitted information (such as Internet traffic or phone calls). However, surveillance can also refer to simple, relatively no- or low-technology methods such as human intelligence agents and postal interception. Surveillance is very useful to governments and law enforcement to maintain social control, recognize and monitor threats, and prevent/investigate criminal activity. The vast majority of computer surveillance involves the monitoring of data and traffic on the Internet.
  • Spyware: are programs that are secretly installed on the personal computers that have the ability to access and record data or information. Spyware is a software program that secretively monitors a user’s internet habits and navigation. Alongside from monitoring, they have the ability to alter internet and browser settings secretively. They can add other software and change other security measures. Therefore they are a serious threat to internet privacy and have been combated by the anti-spyware software that have recently been encouraged and campaigned for protection.

  • Taylorism is the process of finding ways to improve and the efficiency of worker activity and workshop organization based upon scientific studies of human efficiency and incentive systems; for example, the flattening of hierarchies and limited decentralization of decision-making (Network Society, p.13). To assure socially approved conditions of work by creating higher standard of living to workers.

  • Technological Determinism: how technology has an overwhelming power to drive human interaction and social change. (Western view); technological determinists isolate the technology factor and they don't think you can stop/reverse it (Benick, Lecture, Jan. 22nd, 2009)
  • Technology: In general technology is the relationship that society has with its tools and crafts, and to what extent society can control its environment. the practical application of knowledge especially in a particular area" and "a capability given by the practical application of knowledge



  • Virtual: The term virtual is a concept applied in many fields with somewhat differing connotations, and also, differing denotations. The term has been defined in philosophy as "that which is not real" but may display the full qualities of the real. Colloquially, 'virtual' is used to mean almost, particularly when used in the adverbial form e.g., "That's virtually [almost] impossible".

  • Web 1.0 - Information based. Where books, music, news were moved into digital format. Such as AOL, geocities, netscape.
  • Web 2.0 - the term "Web 2.0" describes the changing trends in the use of World Wide Web technology and web design that aim to enhance creativity, communications, secure information sharing, collaboration and functionality of the web. Web 2.0 concepts have led to the development and evolution of web culture communities and hosted services, such as social-networking sites, video sharing sites, wikis and blogs. It encapsulates the idea of the proliferation of interconnectivity and interactivity of web-delivered content. Examples include Facebook, eBay, wikipedia, craiglist, Flickr etc.
  • Wiki - A wiki is a page or collection of Web pages designed to enable anyone who accesses it to contribute or modify content, using a simplified markup language. Wikis are often used to create collaborative websites and to power community websites.
  • Wikipedia - is a multilingual, Web-based, free-content encyclopedia. It is written collaboratively by volunteers and allows most articles to be changed by anyone with access to a Web browser and an Internet connection.