Faculty, Students Travel to Prague to Present at International Communication Association Conference

Use #ICA18 to Follow Conference Activities

A mix of faculty and students from the Kent State University School of Communication Studies (COMM) will present their latest research during the 68th Annual Conference of the International Communication Association (ICA) May 24 to 28 in Prague. With more than 80 percent of its global communication faculty presenting papers and several other professors participating in a range of proceedings, the school's faculty members are living the conference theme, "Voices," by using theirs to prove their impact on the communication studies industry.

All COMM-specific sessions are listed below including session and paper titles and abstracts. 

Don't forget to follow COMM faculty on social media! Those with active Twitter accounts are included with their session titles. Use #ica18 to follow conference activities.

ICA is an academic association for scholars interested in the study, teaching and application of all aspects of human and mediated communication. ICA began more than 50 years ago as a small association of U.S. researchers and is now a truly international association with more than 4,500 members in 80 countries. Since 2003, ICA has been officially associated with the United Nations as a non-governmental association (NGO).

DOWNLOAD THE ICA PROGRAM SCHEDULE (Note: This list was created using ICA’S information. Some faculty and/or students may not show up if they have not changed their university affiliation with ICA.)

Kent State is one of the first U.S. programs to offer a master's degree and a doctoral degree with a focus on global communication. 


Friday, May 25

8:00 to 9:15

Selective Exposure and Its Influences (Hilton Prague, L, Berlin)

To Seek or Not to Seek? An Assessment of Partisan Media Avoidance and its Correlates
Author Michael A. Beam, Ph.D., @hardhead

Scholars have noted the importance of examining active information avoidance of partisan media in addition to seeking out these sources of information. However, one weakness with this extant line of research is how scholars have assessed active avoidance. In particular, the research utilizing survey data has generally measured information avoidance by applying bi-polar scales that assess use or lack of use of partisan media. The issue is that this assessment of avoidance could conflate those individuals who actively avoid partisan media and those who do not use news content. In this paper, we assess whether our measures of active partisan avoidance are separate concepts from use of these same outlets. We also evaluate the validity of these measures. In general, our results show that measuring avoidance as a distinct concept could be a better assessment of this concept than simply considering use of these outlets.

Biological Approaches to Political Communication: What Can Our Genes, Eyes, Brain, and Skin Tell Us? (Hilton Old Town, M, Mozart II)

Are Political Discussion Behaviors Heritable?: Using Twin Data to Examine Genetic Effects on Traditional and Mediated Political Talk
Author Chance York, Ph.D., @chanceyork23

Political discussion has largely been investigated within an effects paradigm as either a mediator of news media influence or an independent predictor of political outcomes such as issue learning, efficacy, and participation. To better understand conditions in which discussion effects operate, this study instead examines trait-based mechanisms that motivate individuals to engage in—or avoid—political talk in the first place. Using original twin study survey data and a behavior genetics framework that leverages comparisons between the behaviors of fraternal and identical twin pairs, this article shows latent genetic traits account for between 25% and 64% of the variance in several discussion measures, including traditional and online discussion, as well as discussion with disagreement. The results suggest that, in addition to environmental factors (e.g., parent and peer influence), a latent genetic mechanism may help explain why some individuals tend to be consistently “discussion seeking” while others are “discussion avoidant.” 

14:00 to 15:15

Power, Resistance, Professionalism, and Internationalization in China's Media Industries (Hilton Prague, LL, Congress Hall III)

Examining Chinese Soft Power in the Ethiopian Telecom Industry: Toward an Alternative Model of Financing?
Author Tewodros Workalemahu Workneh, Ph.D., @Tework 

Since its inception in 1894, Ethiopia’s telecommunications sector has been characterized by a vertically integrated market run by a state-owned enterprise outside the realm of competition. Although the monopolistic model still persists, the Ethiopian government has awarded multi-billion dollar contracts to Chinese telecommunications multinationals ZTE and Huawei in the last decade. Based on analysis of interviews, this article explores the rationales and implications of Sino-Ethiopian partnerships in the Ethiopian telecommunications sector from a critical political economy perspective. 

15:30 to 16:45

The 2016 Election and Social Media (Hilton Prague, M, Yoga Room (Cybex Health Club)

300 Million Clicks and Political Engagement via Facebook in the 2016 American Presidential Election
Author Michael A. Beam, Ph.D., 

News media has the ability to set the agenda, and the US Presidential election is frequently a time to observe citizens responding to cues about the importance of the election. The importance of the media has not decreased with the increase in media choice and social network sites like Facebook. Instead, social media provides additional opportunities for scholars to observe how individuals are following and engaging with news content. Through the collection and analysis of all Facebook posts and their metadata from eight prominent Facebook pages, this study tracks the changes in Facebook user’s engagement over the course of the 2016 campaign using multilevel spline regression. We extend prior research by examining traditional campaign events as well as partisan scandals across media organization types. Engagement with news sites does vary from July to November, and we find source characteristics drive attention at specific phases of the campaign.

Top Papers in Intergroup Communication (Hilton Prague, L, Athens)

Political Party Identification and Intergroup Attitudes: Exploring the Effects of Mediated and Direct Contact with the Opposing Party During a Presidential Campaign
Authors Paul Haridakis, Ph.D., and Mei-Chen Lin, Ph.D., @meichenlin

From the theoretical perspective of intergroup contact (Pettigrew,1998), this study examined the indirect effects of outgroup partisan media exposure (Fox News for Democrats; MSNBC and CNN for Republicans) and interpersonal contact with outgroup members on intergroup bias and intergroup competition through party identity, a mediating mechanism explaining the relationships between the contact-attitude link (e.g., Mummendey, Kessler, Klink, & Mielke, 1999; Tajfel & Turner, 1986). The hypothesized model was tested for both Democrats and Republicans Bootstrap analyses with 5,000 iterations were conducted using PROCESS (Model 4, Hayes, 2013). Results indicate that mediated and direct contact with “the other side” indirectly influenced group members’ intergroup bias in favor of their own party and tendency to adopt a social competition strategy through an increased political party identity. That is, intergroup contact did not diminish bias or competition. It actually increased it, not directly but through enhanced party identity.

EXTENDED SESSION PART 2: Global Communication and Social Change in African Contexts (Hilton Prague, M, Chez Louis Salon)

Telecommunications as an Archetype of State-led Development: Examining the Merits and Limitations of the Ethiopian Model
Author Tewodros Workalemahu Workneh, Ph.D., @Tework 

After the end of command economy in 1991, Ethiopia adopted a quasi-capitalist economic program that modeled the state as an active player in the country’s development agenda. One of the main tenets the current government’s development models is state ownership of the commanding heights of its economy, including the telecommunications sector. A rare breed in the era of deregulation, Ethiopia’s state-controlled telecommunications sector has been a source of intense debate involving different stakeholders, especially the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Primarily based on analysis of interviews, this essay explores discourses of divergent telecommunications policies and their implications on development. Findings indicate, while the Ethiopian government’s rationale of state control of telecommunication for equitable growth is a valid proposition, the policy has created a revolving door scenario between developmentalism and neopatrimonialism that oftentimes trumps the agency of end-users. 

17:00 to 18:15

Issues in Political Communication (Hilton Prague, M, Palmovka)

Neo-Ottomans and Neoliberals of New Turkey: Egyptian Boycotts in the Turkish Media
Author Yesim Kaptan, Ph.D., @YesimKaptan_

The author systematically analyzes the discourse of the Turkish media—print and online newspapers and popular culture websites—about the Egyptian boycott of Turkish media products which began in 2013. In order to contribute to an understanding of how the Turkish media industry helps the government to constitute hegemonic discourses through the articulation of neoliberalism in the realm of public discourse and to preserve status quo of the neoliberal order, she examines discursive representations, hegemonic struggles, and different alignments of Turkish and the Middle Eastern agents represented in the Turkish media. Analyzing media coverage of the Egyptian boycotts in these newspapers and websites provides analytical insights on depoliticization of politics in Turkish public discourse that shaped around neoliberal ideology of the party in power in Turkey, Justice and Development Party (AKP).

Saturday, May 26

8:00 to 9:15

New Research on Fear Appeals in Health Contexts (Hilton Prague, LL, Roma)

A Cross-Cultural Investigation of Individual Versus Group-Based Fear Appeals Effects of Culturally-Tailored Threat and Self-Efficacy on Perceived Threat, Perceived Self-efficacy, and Behavioral Intention
Author Nichole Egbert, Ph.D.

This study examined how culturally-designed health messages, particularly with regard to individualism and collectivism, influence perceptions of individuals from different cultures and cultural orientations in context of smoking cessation. The overall findings indicate that people perceive the same message differently depending on their countries or cultural orientation. Specifically, American participants reported a greater level of threat and had more positive attitudes toward the messages than Korean participants, whereas Korean participants expressed greater intention of joining the suggested smoking cessation programs than American participants. Moreover, individualistic group of people perceived less threat, self-efficacy, and had more negative attitude toward the messages than the collectivistic group. Other additional findings addressed the importance of understanding cultural influence on fear appeals. However, further future research is required to better understand these relationships.

The Production of Knowledge About Journalism: Academic, Professional and Educational (Hilton Prague, M, Karlin I)

Journalism Education for Democratization: Lessons from Norway’s Experiment in Ethiopia
Author Tewodros Workalemahu Workneh, Ph.D. 

Although the number of journalism education programs in Sub-Saharan Africa has historically been low, recent trends indicate a rise both in scope and specialization. While this increase is usually attributed to higher education institutions’ response to market demands, certain journalism education programs are born out of development assistance initiatives that envision nation building processes of democratization and development. The Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD) is notable for its involvement in higher education journalism training at a graduate level in select developing countries. This paper assesses the presently discontinued involvement of NORAD in the establishment of a graduate journalism program at Addis Ababa University in Ethiopia between 2004-2007. In doing so, it reviews what has been learned over the lifespan of NORAD’s sponsorship of the program by discussing what worked and what did not work. 

12:30 to 13:45

Attitudes, Emotions, and Gratifications: A Psychological Perspective of Sports Communication (Hilton Old Town, M, Strauss)

Chair Paul Haridakis, Ph.D.

14:00 to 15:15

Communicating in and About Families (Hilton Old Town, M, Dvorak I)

Family Matters: A Functional Model of Family Communication Patterns and Political Participation
Author Elizabeth Graham, Ph.D.

The goal of this study was to examine the extent to which family communication patterns predict psychosocial outcomes (i.e., political efficacy), information processing behaviors (i.e. seeking and sharing information via multiple platforms), and behavioral outcomes (i.e., political participation). A nationally representative sample of 1,159 respondents were recruited to participate in the study. This study reaches beyond philosophy to examine whether family communication patterns, developed in childhood, mobilize adults’ civic engagement and political participation. A path analysis confirmed the model of Family Communication Patterns and political behaviors. These findings support the contention that family communication patterns encountered in childhood continue to influence behaviors in adulthood, particularly civic and political activities. Understanding these significant associations may clarify political mobilization motivations and family communication practices. Implications of the study are discussed and future directions are proposed. 

17:00 to 18:15

ICA Interactive Paper/Poster Session II (Hilton Prague, LL, Congress Hall II - Exhibit Hall/Posters)

Publishing in Sex Roles—A Journal of Research: An Expression of Feminist Voice
Author Janice D. Yoder, Ph.D., College of Public Health, research professor

The purposes of this interactive poster session with the journal’s editor are to familiarize scholars with the aims and scope of Sex Roles: A Journal of Research (published by Springer; 2016 2-year impact factor: 1.954, ranking 5th among the 41 ISI-ranked women’s studies journals) and to further develop the journal for Communication Studies research. Examples of recently published research and how these papers fit with the conference’s four questions involving theorizing about, the creation and representation of, the expression of, and the impact of voice will be used to help facilitate this exchange.

Sunday, May 27

8:00 to 9:15

Effects of Social Media on Health Risk Perceptions and Healthy Behavior (Hilton Prague, LL, Vienna)

Clicking Health Risk Messages on Social Media: A Moderated Mediation Path through Perceived Message Features and Fear Arousal
Author Xueying (Maria) Zhang

This study examined how fear appeal messages and individual coping styles combined to driving users’ intention to click health risk messages on social media. Two online experiments were conducted. Participants were recruited from Mturk and were randomly assigned to four experimental conditions (2 (high vs. low threat) X 2 (high vs. low efficacy message), while their risk perceptions, fear arousal, and coping styles were measured with a questionnaire. The results suggested that: (1) threat and efficacy message influenced intention to click via the mediating effect of perceived threat, perceived efficacy, and fear arousal; (2) blunting style used by the participant suppressed fear arousal’s ability in mobilizing intention-to-click; (3) monitoring style has a positive main effect on intention-to-click. The theoretical and practical implications for health risk message design were then discussed.

11:00 to 12:15

Silencing Dissent (Hilton Old Town, M, Dvorak I)

Criminalizing Speech as Terrorism: A Discursive Discussion of Policy and Practice on Ethiopia’s Counter-Terrorism Law
Author Tewodros Workalemahu Workneh, Ph.D., @Tework

For nearly three decades, Ethiopia’s current ruling party, the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF), has maintained its power through a highly centralized, vanguard party system. By adopting a “development first” rhetoric that deemphasizes other nation-building tenets such as democratization, contemporary Ethiopian politics is characterized by an insular decision-making power concentrated within a detached political clique at the expense of basic human rights provisions granted by the Ethiopian Constitution. Recently, the Ethiopian government has extensively used the provisions of the Ethiopian Anti-Terrorism Proclamation of 2009 to prosecute several Ethiopian citizens and organizations that are critical of the ruling party. By framing the adoption and execution of Ethiopia’s Anti-Terrorism Proclamation as an outcome of EPRDF’s long-term hegemonic project coalesced in “developmentalism,” this paper demonstrates how the Ethiopian State has created a legal-rational bureaucracy that exploits terrorism narratives to stifle critical speech disseminated through both traditional and digital media platforms.

Monday, May 28

8:00 to 9:15

Misinformation and Correction (Hilton Prague, L, Athens)

How Do Fact Checks Operate?: Examining Fact-Check Order, Affect, and Elaboration in Perceptions of Misinformation 
Authors James D. Ponder, Ph.D., @jd_ponder; Carrie Winters; Zachary Humphries, @Z_Humphries; Michael A. Beam, Ph.D., @hardhead; Chance York, Ph.D., @chanceyork23; Catherine Elise Goodall, Ph.D., @KSUmediaprof

Journalists have offered fact-checking websites such as Politifact as a solution to “fake news” and political misinformation though empirical evidence for fact-checking effectiveness is mixed, and individual-level cognitive processing factors that might condition fact-checking effectiveness are unclear. This study uses a survey-based experiment of n = 1,177 Amazon Mechanical Turk participants to test how two competing mechanisms—cognitive elaboration and negative affect—may alter how individuals process a fake health news story and its associated fact check under a variety of content-based (i.e., manipulated fake news source) and contextual conditions (i.e., preemptive fact-check or fact check viewed after fake news exposure). Results from a mediated-moderation model show that political fact checks primarily operate through increasing fact-check-related anxiety (an affective mechanism) and not enhancing cognitive elaboration of the story or fact check content (a rational processing mechanism). Implications for fact-checking interventions to blunt the misinformation effects of fake news are discussed.

17:00 to 18:15

Framing Effects in Health Communication (Hilton Prague, LL, Madrid)

Curbing Excessive Pornography Consumption Using Traditional and Religious Identity-Based EPPM
Authors Krishnamurti Murniadi and Nichole Egbert, Ph.D.

Excessive consumption of Internet pornography often leads to negative effects on individuals’ sexual health, mental health, and marital satisfaction. This study tests fear appeal messages intended to limit males’ consumption of pornography by exploring: (a) the effectiveness of the Extended Parallel Process Model (EPPM) in curbing excessive pornography consumption, and (b) the potential of social identity as an alternative to health threat when using EPPM. Participants were randomly assigned to receive two different messages: (a) a health EPPM message and (b) a religious identity-based EPPM message. The results suggested that social identity correlates with perceived fear in processing EPPM message. Among participants who received traditional EPPM messages, perceived efficacy, but not perceived threat, correlated with behavioral intention, whereas among those who received the religion EPPM message, both perceived fear and efficacy correlated with behavioral intention.

POSTED: Thursday, May 24, 2018 11:41 AM
Updated: Friday, March 24, 2023 05:17 AM