Issue Vol. 6, No. 2 / April 2010

Effects of Message Sensation Value in Bird Flu TV Stories on Audience Arousal And Perception of Story Quality
Author(s): Ran Wei and Shuhua Zhou
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To understand how message sensation value affects audiences’ perception of the new stories of the bird flu pandemic, a 2 x 2 x 4 within-subject experiment was designed. And news stories from CNN were used as stimuli. Message sensation value was found to be the key factor influencing participants’ processing of the stories. It has main effects on attention, arousal, fear, apprehension, and behavioral intention. Moreover, results show that message sensation value affected story perception as well. The higher the message sensation value, the more positive the perception is of the story in terms of clarity, understandability, credibility, enjoyability, and informativeness. Message sensation value in stories thus is not a distraction, but a facilitator of story acceptance.
Health Orientation and Media Exposure among Chinese College Students: Family, Internet and Life Satisfaction
Author(s): Jie Xu
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This study investigated the relationship between health orientation and media exposure among Chinese college students. The results indicated that interpersonal channels played a more effective role in promoting health-related information than mass media. Family and Internet were two salient factors within the two categories. The study also examined the effects of online health information seeking on people’s health consciousness, beliefs and activities. The health-oriented variable that consistently demonstrated the strongest relationship with Internet functions was health-information orientation. Life satisfaction was found to be an influential trait as it significantly correlated with people’s health consciousness, health-information orientation and health beliefs.
Revisiting the "Google in China" Question from a Political Economic Perspective
Author(s): Micky Lee
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This paper asserts that existing studies on U.S. Internet companies in China fail to acknowledge that technology is developed in a political economic context; that laws are drafted to consolidate the dominant groups; that nation-states are not the only primary actors in international negotiation; and that commercial information is valuable to Internet companies. This paper aims to redefine the "Google in China" question by examining how the Internet was developed in the U.S.; how the Clinton Administration and U.S. high-tech industry lobbied for trade with China; and how Google strategized for the China market.
Research on the Stereotype of Western Women in Advertising of Chinese Fashion Magazines
Author(s): Wei Chen
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Chinese Celebrity-Endorsed TV Commercials: A Content Analysis
Author(s): Zhen Sun
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Celebrity endorsement advertising has become a remarkable phenomenon in many countries, especially in China. Given the rising popularity of celebrity endorsements in China during the past two decades and the lack of relevant descriptive studies, this paper seeks to fill the research gap. The study mainly employs the method of content analysis over an extended sample of Chinese television commercials. The findings disclose the distribution of celebrities’ gender, age, nationality, expertise area, and products’ categories and types, and they provide evidence for the popularity of celebrity endorsements in China. As one of the early efforts to delve into the implementation of Chinese celebrity endorsements, the study is expected to provide advertisers with the initial knowledge of the use of celebrities in Chinese TV advertisements.
Between Imagination and Reality: A Narrative Analysis of Cape No. 7
Author(s): Pei-Ling Lee
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As a film that created the highest box office record in Taiwanese cinematic industry, Cape No. 7 was one of the topical subjects in the latter half of 2008 in Taiwan. Superficially, the story of Cape No. 7 is an unsophisticated romance that contains all the popular elements to attract an audience, especially the younger generation. Nevertheless, taking a step further to critically examine this film, the plots, the dialogues, the backgrounds of the characters, and even the use of languages in Cape No. 7, represent unique social experiences and various historical memories among different ethnic (and sub-ethnic) groups in Taiwanese society. On one hand, these localized elements in Cape No. 7 make an effort to create an emotional resonance. However, on the other hand, the display of localization could be intercultural barriers that cause difficulties for audiences outside of Taiwanese society to understand this film. By applying a narrative approach, therefore, this paper intends to interpret and criticize the intercultural, interracial, and interpersonal issues contained in Cape No. 7. In addition, this paper tries to decode the narrative representation, structure, and order presented in this film, as well as their relationships to the social, cultural, and historical contexts in society. [
Success Through a Cultural Lens: Perceptions, Motivations, and Attributions
Author(s): Kimberly Feeny & Qi Wang
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This study examined the perception of success using the framework of cultural individualism-collectivism and attribution theory. It was hypothesized that the U.S. culture, individualism, and independent self-construal would predict the perception of success as a personal achievement, making internal attributions and motivations. To the contrary, the Chinese culture, collectivism, and interdependent self-construal would predict the perception of success as a group achievement, making external attributions and motivations. The sample included 101 American college students and 181 Chinese college students. Results supported the link from culture to the attribution, as well as from individualism-collectivism to the attribution and the motivation to success. Success, however, was considered a personal achievement in both cultures.
Framing Political Sex Scandal in Cross-Cultural Context between China and the United States: A Comparative Case Study
Author(s): Weimin Liao
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Based on qualitative and quantitative data, this paper examines the news probing the procedure about the Spitzer case, a political sex scandal that happened in the United State, and analyzes the content of media coverage and public opinion posted on the websites in cross-cultural context. A theoretical framework modified from Entman’s (1993) frame functions is constructed in this study, where "emotional catharsis" is added in a cross-national communication system. The salient frame setting effect in cognitive aspect is verified by comparing the correlation between the content of media coverage and online opinion. The function of opinion-leader is also demonstrated in the cross-cultural communication for interpreting foreign issues. The cultural difference exerts influence on the framing effect in China and the United States; however, the research findings show that two nations share some significantly similar features on the audience framing process, and the fundamental values are still really prominent in people’s mind. By the comparative case studying the political sex scandal, the social reality of different countries is also reflected, which provides a comprehensive understanding of the mechanism of global political communication.
From Being a Police Officer to Being a Professor: An Interview with Dr. Betsy Wackernagel Bach
Author(s): Chia-I Hou
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Dr. Betsy Wackernagel Bach is a former NCA president and is a professor of Communication Studies at The University of Montana-Missoula. People might know that she is an outstanding scholar specializing in organizational communication and interpersonal communication but few would know she is also interested in higher education and has published a lot on the issue. In the interview, she gave helpful information regarding applying for graduate school to our potential readers and we also discussed the NCA Doctoral Reputational Study. In addition, her life experience is amazing and full of surprise. Why and how would a police officer wantn to pursue a Ph.D degree in communication and finally became a professor? It is hard to imagine the connection. But the transformation is not surprising and lost to her at all. "It’s all about communication!" as Professor Bach might say.
A Priori Centrality in Classical China
Author(s): Xiaosui Xiao
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In explaining the emergence and persistence of Chinese awareness of centrality, researchers have focused almost exclusively on external factors such as semi-geographical isolation, political coercion, moral persuasion, and spiritual control. This essay attempts at a phenomenological account and explores the more primordial consciousness of centrality, that which has enable the so-called political, ethical, and spiritual centralities to be perceived as such. The author first argues for the early existence of an a priori central consciousness in Classical China by examining the fundamental meaning of the classical philosophical concept of Zhong (centrality). He then discusses the role of this concept in shaping the structure of Chinese consciousness during the Classical periods.
Meanings, Images of Interpersonal Communication, and The Iching
Author(s): Victor Lux Tonn
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This paper explores issues of meanings and images in the communication xystem. Through the jT principle of decision-making and action of the individuals (embodying the ultimate meanings of life and vivid images of daily activities), senders and receivers, together with the mechanisms of communication channel, are integrated into a comprehensive unity. Specific to the modern communication xystem of The Iching, the images of Trigrams, Fengshui, Yuan, and five cardinal principles associated with daily activities of the human beings are incorporated, and the interpersonal and relational settings of Face and Li are internalized in the socio-cultural structures of the communication as a social xystem. Then the interpersonal complex among the human agents is decomposed into the positive and negative types of interpersonal sub-complex, and the interpesonal network in the Iching communication xystem is further decomposed into the interpersonal sub-networks of affection and mutual benefits.
Ritual Hermeneutics as the Source of Meaning: Interpreting the Fabric of Chinese Culture
Author(s): Zongjie Wu and Meixin Hu
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Ritual hermeneutics as the epistemological foundation of Chinese culture, analogous to the Western notion of reason or rationality, by which the whole fabric of Chinese culture could be made sensible. This paper explores the source of meaning in terms of bodily intelligibility beyond propositional representation, attempting to frame an alternative approach to the interpretation of Chinese culture, and develop a way of ritual thinking for the intercultural communication in the Chinese cultural context. Ritual descriptions recorded in Book of Rites (Liji,??) two thousand years ago and the lived ritual activities in a modern Chinese village are investigated and analyzed to bring into view how the hermeneutic tradition of Chinese ritual discourse is still alive as a way of ordinary Chinese people’s life, which may be misrepresented as religion or the superstitious within the rational framework of propositional assumption. We argued that Li (ritual, ?) is the texture of all spheres of Chinese culture, and should be regarded as the source of meaning and presumptions. Its origin could be traced back to I Ching.
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