First Brown Bag of the Semester – August 31, 2012

The audio from last Friday’s seminar can be found here: Brown Bag – August 31, 2012 (Rachael and Justin)

Rachel Bailey

“Encoding the Fleeting: Examining What Types of Information Humans Encode”

How and why individuals encode different types of information in media messages is important to both media producers and scholars. This research uses Gibson’s (1986) theory of direct perception and Clark’s (2008) extended mind hypothesis to argue, contrary to standard research approaches, that in television messages information which is present only briefly should be remembered better than information which remains on screen for a long time. Clark argues that creating mental representations is costly and, therefore, we evolved to do so only for things that do not remain stable in our surroundings. Gibson theorizes a world made up of substances (air, water, etc.), surfaces (walls, floors, etc.), objects, and animals. These substances and surfaces are relatively stable while objects and animals are more likely to move and change. Combining these ideas it is argued that briefly appearing information (called fleeting) will be better recognized than stable information. Further, the effect should be smaller or disappear if the information (stable or fleeting) is highly relevant. Results confirm that fleeting information is encoded better than stable and that relevance counteracts the effect of both stability and location on encoding.

Rachel L. Bailey, M.A., is a doctoral candidate in mass communication at Indiana University. Her research is interested in discovering and explicating complex interactions among relevant individual, environmental and media characteristics during media use which have significant downstream effects on important human behaviors (e.g. learning, decision making, behavior change, enjoyment). 

Justin Keene

“Positively Negative: Human Processing of Dual Valent Mediated Messages”

This talk presents the data from several studies related to how humans process mediated messages. In some cases, these messages are “poignant,” meaning that they start pleasant (or unpleasant), but transition at some point over time to end unpleasant (or pleasant). In other cases, these messages are “coactive,” meaning that they are equally pleasant and unpleasant at the same time. This research is grounded in the dimensional theory of emotion (Bradley, & Lang, 1994, 2000) and the dual system theory of the motivational systems (Cacioppo & Gardner, 1999). This talk attempts to discuss the variable effects of these emotion-types upon resource allocation, memory, and psychophysiology. Implications for a possible model of the Limited Capacity for Motivated Mediated Message Processing (Lang, 2010) are also given.

Justin Keene, M.A., is a dual doctoral candidate in the department of Telecommunications and the Cognitive Science program at Indiana University. He received his B.A. in Electronic Media and Communication (2007) and his M.A. in Mass Communication (2009) from Texas Tech University. He has worked as a videographer, web designer, and motion graphic artist. His research can be seen as the combination of two separate, but related interests. First, he is interested in how humans process mediated information. Much of this research utilizes the Limited Capacity Model for Motivated Mediated Message Processing. Specifically, he has researched how the dynamic emotional tone of a message affects the emotional reactivity of the viewer. Justin’s second line of research is related to the production and consumption of sports messages. He has demonstrated in previous research that high sports fans: react to sports news messages differently than non-fans, prefer specific production techniques in sports messages, and assign credibility to sports commentators depending upon their perceptions of the commentator’s previous sports experience.

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