Mediatization in the Arab World: A Cross-Cultural Comparison of New Media Use

Julie B. Wiest 1 *, Nahed Eltantawy 2
More Detail
1 West Chester University of Pennsylvania, USA
2 High Point University, USA
* Corresponding Author
Online Journal of Communication and Media Technologies, Volume 5, Issue 2, pp. 120-142. https://doi.org/10.29333/ojcmt/2509
OPEN ACCESS   1480 Views   1153 Downloads   Published online: 15 Apr 2015
Download Full Text (PDF)

ABSTRACT

New media (including online and cellular technologies) are being embraced around the world, and younger people have led the way in their adoption. These technologies have spread particularly quickly in the Middle East as a result of innovations in satellite, cellular, and Internet technology. In addition, the Arab Spring was a major milestone for new media adoption in the Middle East and helped define appropriate uses for these technologies. Although they have been used for activism and expression, evidence suggests that these are not (or perhaps are no longer) the primary uses of these technologies among young Arabs. Drawing on the concept of mediatization in an analysis of surveys of American and Arab young people, this study explores cultural influences in recent online and cellular technology use in the Arab world, as well as cultural consequences of the increasing adoption of these technologies. In particular, it identifies and explores similarities and differences among the two groups regarding ownership of devices, online and cellular activities, and frequency of these activities. Findings reiterate the prominence of new media in the Arab world and suggest a continuing influence of traditional values, as well as an increasing influence of Western culture.

CITATION

Wiest, J. B., & Eltantawy, N. (2015). Mediatization in the Arab World: A Cross-Cultural Comparison of New Media Use. Online Journal of Communication and Media Technologies, 5(2), 120-142. https://doi.org/10.29333/ojcmt/2509