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Technological Constructions of Reality: An Ontological Perspective
Unformatted Document Text:  Running Head: TECHNOLOGICAL CONSTRUCTION OF REALITY “the mass media actually prevent communication because of their form . . . [and are] actively contributing to the ‘hyperreal’ that has replaced the real” (Bertens, 1995, p. 150). It is based on this notion of the ‘hyperreal’ that Baudrillard addresses the concern of how media affect the message, and whether the medium is in fact the message. Hyper-reality has been defined as the state of reality where “images breed incestuously with each other without reference to reality or meaning” (Appignanesi & Garratt, 1995, p. 55). When reality mutates into a simulacrum of reality it becomes harder to distinguish between the two. Future research should be conducted that addresses the effect of technological ontological perspectives in specific contexts like interpersonal relationships, social networks, organizational communication, and intercultural/intergenerational contexts. Research targeting interpersonal communication should address the effect of hypermediated realities within family, friend, or romantic interpersonal contexts. Research addressing the effect of hypermediated realities in social networks and organizational communication should analyze the impact of hypermediated realities on initiating, maintaining, and expanding social networks as well as within group communication and hierarchical structures. Research addressing the impact of hypermediated realities in intercultural/intergenerational contexts should investigate the role of technology differences between generations and the impact of heavy media usage on established cultural norms. These are a few areas of research that should be examined to analyze the impact of hypermediated technology on reality construction in various communication contexts. Overall, research regarding the extent to which technology shapes our construction of reality is important and necessary in understanding not only our current relationship with technology but also our future as well. 24

Authors: Vincent, Cindy.
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Running Head: TECHNOLOGICAL CONSTRUCTION OF REALITY
“the mass media actually prevent communication because of their form . . . [and are] actively 
contributing to the ‘hyperreal’ that has replaced the real” (Bertens, 1995, p. 150).  It is based on 
this notion of the ‘hyperreal’ that Baudrillard addresses the concern of how media affect the 
message, and whether the medium is in fact the message.  Hyper-reality has been defined as the 
state of reality where “images breed incestuously with each other without reference to reality or 
meaning” (Appignanesi & Garratt, 1995, p. 55).  When reality mutates into a simulacrum of 
reality it becomes harder to distinguish between the two.
Future research should be conducted that addresses the effect of technological ontological 
perspectives in specific contexts like interpersonal relationships, social networks, organizational 
communication, and intercultural/intergenerational contexts.  Research targeting interpersonal 
communication should address the effect of hypermediated realities within family, friend, or 
romantic interpersonal contexts.  Research addressing the effect of hypermediated realities in 
social networks and organizational communication should analyze the impact of hypermediated 
realities on initiating, maintaining, and expanding social networks as well as within group 
communication and hierarchical structures.  Research addressing the impact of hypermediated 
realities in intercultural/intergenerational contexts should investigate the role of technology 
differences between generations and the impact of heavy media usage on established cultural 
norms.  These are a few areas of research that should be examined to analyze the impact of 
hypermediated technology on reality construction in various communication contexts.  Overall, 
research regarding the extent to which technology shapes our construction of reality is important 
and necessary in understanding not only our current relationship with technology but also our 
future as well.
24


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