Why We Mourn the Loss of TV Dad Bob Saget

2022-01-15T20:51:31+00:00

Parasocial relationships with TV dads create emotional connection and meaning. KEY POINTS TV dads are idealized versions of the fathers we’d all love to have. A parasocial relationship describes the one-sided emotional attachment we feel to real and fictional characters. Losing a loved character is experienced as the loss of a real connection; it leaves a hole. Parasocial relationships add to media enjoyment by increasing the immediate pleasure and creating a longer-term sense of meaning. Bob Saget was among the very best of TV dads. Like James Avery, John Ritter, Alan Thicke, and Tom Bosely, he raised his TV [...]

Why We Mourn the Loss of TV Dad Bob Saget2022-01-15T20:51:31+00:00

Are Tech Gifts Bad for My Kids?

2021-12-13T23:39:49+00:00

Tech gifts can introduce digital skills which are foundational to STEM. KEY POINTS Technology from iPhones to Nintendo Switch tops kids’ holiday wishlists. COVID has changed kids' expectations about digital devices—not to mention their parents'. Lots of tech toys teach digital skills, like critical thinking and collaboration. Digital skills are foundational to STEM skills and are a minimum standard for most careers. From an iPhone to Nintendo Switch, a tablet to a smartwatch, what’s on your kid’s wish list? How can you make sense out of what tech experiences are positive? How do you match technology choices with [...]

Are Tech Gifts Bad for My Kids?2021-12-13T23:39:49+00:00

The Psychology of Peloton’s Appeal: What Keeps Us Riding

2021-12-02T23:13:01+00:00

Successful virtual exercise targets much more than physical fitness. KEY POINTS COVID made hybrid experiences more acceptable and even desirable. Self-determination theory is a framework for evaluating technology experience, focusing on core needs: agency, competence, and social connection. When designed well, technology can contribute to the satisfaction of these needs and enhance wellbeing. Peloton creates a virtual experience that simultaneously empowers members to achieve and increases a sense of belonging. Successful virtual exercise targets much more than physical fitness. Like many, I purchased a Peloton bike at the start of COVID. It was a leap of [...]

The Psychology of Peloton’s Appeal: What Keeps Us Riding2021-12-02T23:13:01+00:00

Dr. Brian L. Cutler, 2021 recipient of the CWC Jane Beber Abramson Award

2021-11-17T16:04:48+00:00

Northwestern University’s Pritzker School of Law presented Dr. Brian L. Cutler with the Center on Wrongful Convictions’ 2021 Jane Beber Abramson Award. This national award is presented annually to an individual who has demonstrated extraordinary dedication to pursuing justice for the wrongly convicted. Northwestern’s Center on Wrongful Convictions honors the top boldest and most transformative justice warriors fight to free the wrongfully convicted. The following is an excerpt from the Center’s press release on Dr. Cutler’s award. “Brian is a Professor and the Program Director of Media Psychology in the School of Psychology at @fieldinggraduateuniversity . Our staff and faculty selected Brian to [...]

Dr. Brian L. Cutler, 2021 recipient of the CWC Jane Beber Abramson Award2021-11-17T16:04:48+00:00

The Psychological Appeal of Squid Games: Why We Can’t Stop Watching

2021-10-11T18:06:19+00:00

Key Points Squid Games is a survival drama and cautionary tale that examines the extremes of social power, injustice, and privilege. It is timely because it encapsulates the powerlessness, frustration, and confusion of the pandemic. In Squid Games, the lack of empathy and cruel abuse of power is more difficult to watch than the violence. Source: Antonio Guillem/Shutterstock Netflix’s Squid Games is a dystopian fiction that pits a group of desperate people against each other in deadly children’s games, lured by the salvation of a large cash prize. The main character is an initially unsympathetic gambling addict Seong Gi-hun who steals from [...]

The Psychological Appeal of Squid Games: Why We Can’t Stop Watching2021-10-11T18:06:19+00:00

Ruth Weiss, the Beat Goddess Documentary

2021-10-08T00:34:36+00:00

In a life that has spanned 92 creative years, ruth weiss is one of the most influential writers of the Beat Generation who revolutionized and empowered the world of poetry. Elisabeth P. Montgomery, Ph.D., Fielding Alum - Class of 2006 Greetings, Fielding friends and alumni! I want to share the gratifying success of producing a documentary about my friend, poet ruth weiss. I met ruth in 2008 at a fundraiser for the Beat Museum in San Francisco's North Beach community, across the street from Lawrence Ferlinghetti’s famous City Lights Bookstore a hub of the Free Speech [...]

Ruth Weiss, the Beat Goddess Documentary2021-10-08T00:34:36+00:00

How to Stop Trauma Dumping and Protect Your Mental Health

2021-09-27T22:25:43+00:00

How to Stop Trauma Dumping and Protect Your Mental Health Are you a trauma dumper? Trauma dumping is a type of emotional dumping that, to quote the Urban Dictionary, results in “unloading all your emotional crap unmercifully onto one or more of your friends.” The practice has expanded from people you know to trauma dumping to total strangers. Trauma dumping can be hazardous to your friendships and mental health. Yes. The last months have been stressful and a lot of us have pent-up emotions that we’d like to air.  That’s no excuse for unloading negativity onto the unsuspecting. [...]

How to Stop Trauma Dumping and Protect Your Mental Health2021-09-27T22:25:43+00:00

What To Do When Your Friend Behaves Badly Online?

2021-09-27T22:21:03+00:00

What To Do When Your Friend Behaves Badly Online? We see a lot of behaviors online.  Everybody has their own ideas about normal, but we sometimes see people we know posting online in ways that seem totally off.  It is troublesome when it's someone we know and care about. Do we look the other way or are we not being a good friend by ignoring it?  How do we distinguish between socially inappropriate and someone in mental distress? Mental distress is complex.  Behavior changes can be triggered by a range of things—many of which are situational and will pass, but [...]

What To Do When Your Friend Behaves Badly Online?2021-09-27T22:21:03+00:00

Gabby Petito: True-Crime Rubbernecking on Social Media

2021-09-23T23:57:39+00:00

A true-crime case unleashes speculation and opportunism on TikTok. KEY POINTS When Influencer Gabby Petito disappeared, social media embraced the case, generating millions of views. Information takes on meaning of its own as it travels, attracting opportunists using hashtags as clickbait. There is real danger in true crime speculation that activates our survival instincts, but the appeal goes deeper than rubbernecking. The wealth of social media content on Petito generated empathy, identification, and parasocial connections, creating emotional investment. True crime is appealing.  Call it morbid curiosity, but we can't look away.  True crime speculation about the attractive young Influencer [...]

Gabby Petito: True-Crime Rubbernecking on Social Media2021-09-23T23:57:39+00:00

Fielding, Artificial Intelligence and the Evolving Frontier of Social Justice

2021-09-08T19:39:39+00:00

by Jason Ohler, Ph.D. Fielding Faculty, Media Psychology It has been an honor to work for an institution that values social justice so highly. History has consistently taught us that if we aren’t vigilant about social justice, a vacuum develops that can be filled all too easily by the forces of misogyny, ethnocentrism, and xenophobia. Recent history has also taught us that technology exacerbates the potential for this to happen. Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology is so powerful, and often so discrete, that it can be used to win elections, set social policy, or dupe us into believing something that is [...]

Fielding, Artificial Intelligence and the Evolving Frontier of Social Justice2021-09-08T19:39:39+00:00
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