The corporate and the social are crucial themes of our times. In the first decade of the twenty-first century, both individual lives and society were shaped by capitalist crisis and the rise of social media. But what marks the distinctively social character of "social media"? And how does it relate to the wider social and economic context of contemporary capitalism? The concept of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is based on the idea that a socially responsible capitalism is possible; this suggests that capitalist media corporations can not only enable social interaction and cooperation but also be socially responsible.
This book provides a critical and provocative perspective on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) in media and communication industries. It examines both the academic discourse on CSR and actual corporate practices in the media sector, offering a double critique that reveals contradictions between corporate interests and social responsibilities. Marisol Sandoval’s political economic analysis of Apple, AT&T, Google, HP, Microsoft, News Corp, The Walt Disney Company and Vivendi shows that media and communication in the twenty-first century are confronted with fundamental social responsibility challenges.
From software patents and intellectual property rights to privacy on the Internet, from working conditions in electronics manufacturing to hidden flows of eWaste – this book encourages the reader to explore the multifaceted social (ir)responsibilities that shape commercial media landscapes today. It makes a compelling argument for thinking beyond the corporate in order to envision and bring about truly social media. It will interest students and scholars of media studies, cultural industry studies, sociology, information society studies, organization studies, political economy, business and management.
Table of Contents
1. Introduction 2. Corporate Social Responsibility: Critical Perspectives 3. Social Responsibility and the Media 4. Towards a Critical Empirical Case Study of CSR in Media and Communication Industries 5. Apple: Dirty Computers? 6. AT&T: Internet Censor? 7. Google: Evil Spy? 8. HP: Hazardous Products? CSR Approach 9. Microsoft: Knowledge Monopoly? 10. News Corporation: Consciousness Industry? 11. The Walt Disney Company: Nightmare Factory? 12. Vivendi: Corporate Pirates? 13. Social (Ir)Responsibility in the Media and Communication System 14. The Logic of Property and the Logic of the Common in the Media System 15. Conclusion: Social Media as Commons-Based Media
Marisol Sandoval is a Lecturer at the Department of Culture and Creative Industries at City University London. Her research focuses on alternative media, critical political economy of cultural industries, and Corporate Social (Ir)Responsibility. She is co-editor of Internet and Surveillance (2009) and Critique, Social Media and the Information Society (2013).
Sandoval’s thoroughly researched and withering critique of corporate social responsibility in the media industry provides an excellent guide for those who want to understand today’s media world in order to change it. - Vincent Mosco, author of 'To the Cloud: Big Data in a Turbulent World'
What a marvelous book this is! Marisol Sandoval offers a vibrant new voice that cuts through the noise about corporate social responsibility and takes us to the center of its claims. Essential reading for sociologists, media scholars, and environmentalists alike. - Toby Miller, author of 'Greening the Media'