A80. Katz, J. E., Rice, R. E., Acord, S., Dasgupta, K., & David, K.  (2004).  Personal mediated communication and the concept of community in theory and practice. In P. Kalbfleisch (Ed.), Communication and community, communication yearbook 28  (pp. 315-371). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.


This chapter has three purposes: first, to review theoretical and practical aspects of the concept of community that may be relevant to a better understanding of relationships between mediated communication and community; second, to explore how personal mediated communication may be affecting the creation, processes, and fates of communities; and third, to consider how the power of mediated communication technologies might alter traditional theories of communities.  The chapter begins with a review of the concept of community, discussing positive and negative perspectives on the relationship between mediated communication and community. Then the chapter examines mediated communications, especially the Internet and mobile phone technology, and their potential impact on social relationships within communities. Next, the chapter considers the prospect of virtual mobile communication-based communities becoming an effective source of social capital. Interwoven with these considerations are suggestions for modifications in traditional community theory-building in light of these new technologies. Mobiles are a special focus because already so much of the world’s population are using them, and the number of users and the extent of their use are expected to continue to grow rapidly.

Click here for PDF copy of publication