CMS 4610: Social Media

Isn't all media "social" media?This course examines the history and  practices of Social Media, through the study and use of popular platforms including FaceBook, YouTube, and Twitter. Links to other sections of this syllabus can be found in the header menu as well as the “General Class Policies” menu.

This syllabus has not yet been updated for the Summer 2018  semester. Check this syllabus frequently to make sure that you have the most current information.

In Summer 2018 this is a 100% online course. Additional course materials are accessible  to enrolled students through GA View.

Desire2Learn Training: Our online course uses the university’s course management system, Desire2Learn. To learn this system, I strongly encourage all students to use the training resources available through the Hub.

First Steps (complete by May 28)

Virtual orientation will be held via GA View during the first week of class. On or before May 28, log on to the course site in GA View and complete the required quizzes and other assignments. All topics and requirements for this week are listed  on the individual assignment pages that are linked from the Schedule page.

Students who fail to complete any assignments before June 1 will be dropped from the class.

Required Text and Films

The textbook is available at the Loch Shop. The films stream through Swank and Films on Demand, which are available to enrolled students through Galileo.

  • Book: Henry Jenkins, Sam Ford, and Joshua Green. Spreadable Media (Amazon)
  • Film: Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman, Catfish (DVD; 2010) [IMDB; Official Site]
  • Film: Alison Klayman, Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry (DVD; 2012) [IMDB; Official Site]
  • Film: Douglas Rushkoff, Merchants of Cool [Full episode available at Films on Demand]
  • Film: Douglas Rushkoff, Generation Like  [Full episode available at Films on Demand and]

Required Software, Hardware, and Technical Capabilities

In addition to GA View, the following software programs and capabilities are necessary for success in this online course. The Hub offers training resources to help students master these tools.

Web Browser: Firefox or Chrome
In this media-rich class, using one of these browsers is mandatory. The university’s Top 10 Tips for Success in online courses notes that Internet Explorer is not recommended for use with  Desire2Learn.
PDF Reader (Adobe Reader)
Students must be able to read PDF files.
Media Player: VLC or equivalent
Students must be able to play mp3 and mp4 files. Many software tools will enable this, including VLC, which is available for free download.
Microsoft Word word processing
Students must be able to compose and read documents saved in the Microsoft Word “docx” format.
Clayton State email
Students must access their CSU email accounts on a regular basis. They must be able to use these accounts to attach and retrieve attached files.
Webcam and Microphone
You will be required to create a video recording for a major assignment and upload this recording to YouTube.  If your laptop, digital camera, or phone does not include these capabilities, you will need to invest in or borrow a microphone and webcam to use with your university-mandated laptop computer. (Wikipedia has a useful entry on webcams.)

Contact Information

My contact information including office hours is collected on separate page.

Vulgarity and Profanity

A note of warning: We are all adults, and we are studying a culture that is often vulgar and profane. As a result, you may hear or see adult content in the materials assigned for our class. Nothing assigned by me or submitted by other students should exceed the MPAA rating of R. When engaging in class discussions, if you submit material that is Not Safe For Work (NSFW) or other venues and audiences ,  please note this in your subject line as a convenience to your classmates. Please also be aware that your contributions should conform to the class’s rules regarding  Online Etiquette.


Students with disabilities who require reasonable accommodations need to register with Disability Services in order to obtain their accommodations. You can contact them at 678-466-5445 or If you are already registered with Disability Services and are seeking accommodations for this course, please make an appointment with me to discuss your specific accommodation needs and give me your accommodations letter.