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Technological Constructions of Reality: An Ontological Perspective
Unformatted Document Text:  Running Head: TECHNOLOGICAL CONSTRUCTION OF REALITY address how new media and communicative technologies impact individual constructions of reality. A technological construction of reality stems from a dependency on hypermediated technology and how this dependency in turn shapes perceptions of reality. As mentioned previously, Gretchen Barbatsis (1999) describes hypermedia as a form of new media that intertwines visual, textual, video and audio media in a non-linear fashion that spans historical time and space restrictions. This description can apply to both mobile technology and certain media platforms associated with the Internet. For mobile technology this includes SMS messaging, MMS messaging, and applications linked through the Internet, like social networking sites and websites. Media platforms associated with the Internet include instant messaging, e- mail, blogging, and video sharing among others. While these are a few examples of hypermedia, Barbatsis (1999) goes into greater detail of what constitutes hypermedia and identifies several characteristics of hypermedia. According to Barbatsis (1999), hypermedia is characterized by its spatial aesthetic field, which she identifies as constructed by a computer. This can easily be seen in media platforms associated with the Internet as described above, but restricting hypermedia to a context of computers in this day and age warrants the question: What is a computer? Modern mobile phones are now developed with computer capabilities built-in, like the Internet and social media applications. Within the next few years what has historically been known as television will change with the advent of Internet television. When this happens scholars will need to re-examine the impact of television when the screen can simultaneously receive a unidirectional message from a network television show while allowing for instant, bi-directional communication formats through social networking sites, websites, and email. The restriction of a computer-mediated environment is 15

Authors: Vincent, Cindy.
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Running Head: TECHNOLOGICAL CONSTRUCTION OF REALITY
address how new media and communicative technologies impact individual constructions of 
reality. 
A technological construction of reality stems from a dependency on hypermediated 
technology and how this dependency in turn shapes perceptions of reality.  As mentioned 
previously, Gretchen Barbatsis (1999) describes hypermedia as a form of new media that 
intertwines visual, textual, video and audio media in a non-linear fashion that spans historical 
time and space restrictions.  This description can apply to both mobile technology and certain 
media platforms associated with the Internet.  For mobile technology this includes SMS 
messaging, MMS messaging, and applications linked through the Internet, like social networking 
sites and websites.  Media platforms associated with the Internet include instant messaging, e-
mail, blogging, and video sharing among others.  
While these are a few examples of hypermedia, Barbatsis (1999) goes into greater detail 
of what constitutes hypermedia and identifies several characteristics of hypermedia. According 
to Barbatsis (1999), hypermedia is characterized by its spatial aesthetic field, which she 
identifies as constructed by a computer.  This can easily be seen in media platforms associated 
with the Internet as described above, but restricting hypermedia to a context of computers in this 
day and age warrants the question: What is a computer?  Modern mobile phones are now 
developed with computer capabilities built-in, like the Internet and social media applications. 
Within the next few years what has historically been known as television will change with the 
advent of Internet television.  When this happens scholars will need to re-examine the impact of 
television when the screen can simultaneously receive a unidirectional message from a network 
television show while allowing for instant, bi-directional communication formats through social 
networking sites, websites, and email.  The restriction of a computer-mediated environment is 
15


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