Until about 15 years ago, teaching an introductory course on electronic media meant teaching the history, structure, economics, content, and regulation of broadcasting. Broadcasting and broadcasters were at the epicenter of all that was electronic media. In fact, the concept of a world of electronic media that didn’t revolve around broadcasting and that wasn’t based on the traditional mass communication model seemed far away and abstract.

Much has changed in the past 15 years, however. Today, students live in a nonlinear, digital world in which traditional broadcasting plays a diminished role. For example, students no longer need to wait for over-the-air radio to hear new music or even their favorite tunes. The Internet provides multiple ...

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