The Official Newsletter for the Media Ecology Association


January 2024

Another year of Explorations . . . 

This month's issue of the newsletter contains  information about the upcoming MEA Student Symposium as well as member publications and affiliate conventions. 

In this issue . . . 

  • CfP: 25th Annual Convention of the Media Ecology Association, June 6-8th, 2024, at Daemon University in Amherst, NY
  • Media Ecology Student Symposium (Feb. 3rd, 2024)
  • New Book Publication: First Letter of My Alphabet by Dr. Lance Strate
  • Call for Reviewers for MEA @ NCA 2024 
  • Invitations to follow MEA on Social Media and Contribute Content to In Media Res!

Call for Papers

The 25th Annual Media Ecology Association Convention

June 6–9, 2024
Daemen University, Amherst, NY

“Cultivating Community: A Celebration of MEA’s 25th Anniversary”

THE MEDIA ECOLOGY ASSOCIATION (MEA) invites the submission of abstracts of papers and proposals for panels for presentation at its 25th Annual Convention, which will be held from June 6–9, 2024 at Daemen University in Amherst, New York. The deadline for submissions is February 1, 2024.

In recognition of the Media Ecology’s 25th anniversary and convention setting, the theme of the 2024 conference is community. The conference will take place on the Daemen University campus in Amherst, NY. Amherst is consistently ranked as one of the safest cities in America due to a community focus and investment in outlets for cultivating “relationally modern” young adults who are able to withstand and navigate intricacies of contemporary life in a digital landscape (Singer, 2014). The Daemen campus is just minutes from Buffalo, colloquially referred to as The City of Good Neighbors — a moniker evidenced by citizen responses to public tragedy and remarkable weather events.

Media ecology has roots in, borrows from, and advances notions pertinent to the intersection of community, democracy, culture, and the nature of cities. Many principal figures in the tradition of media ecology scholarship have worked closely in these areas, from Mumford’s attention to life in urban environments, to Carey’s concerns about democratic participation, as well as Gumpert and Drucker’s many talks and publications dealing with the intersection of said themes.

The annual meeting of the MEA provides an opportunity for our community of scholars, educators, professionals, artists, and practitioners to exchange experiences and ideas in a friendly environment. Participants at MEA conventions address a wide diversity of topics in our program. We encourage submissions that explore media ecological approaches from any number of different disciplines and fields of knowledge and social practice. We are interested in papers, thematic panels, roundtable discussion panels, creative projects, performance sessions, and other proposals of interest to media ecologists.

While we are open to explorations on any topic of interest to media ecologists, we also include a convention theme with the aim of generating further discussion and probes involving multiple perspectives. Submissions do not have to address the theme, but are invited to do so.

Guidelines for Submission

Please submit paper and panel proposals, in English, by February 1, 2024 to MEA2024@daemen.eduA maximum of two submissions per author will be accepted. Authors who wish to be considered for the Top Paper or Top Student Paper award must indicate this on their submission(s).

Submission Guidelines for paper and panel proposals:

  1. Include title(s), abstract(s) (maximum 250 words), and contact information for each participant.
  2. Outline, as relevant, how your paper or panel will fit with the convention theme.
  3. Authors with papers submitted as part of a panel proposal or as a paper proposal who wish to be considered for Top Paper or Top Student Paper (see our Awards page for more details) must send the completed manuscript (see guidelines below) to the convention planners before the convention.

Submission guidelines for manuscripts for authors who wish to be considered for the Top Paper or Top Student Paper award:

  1. Manuscripts should be 4,000–6,000 words (approximately 15 to 25 double-spaced pages)
  2. Include a cover page with your institutional affiliation and other contact information.
  3. Include an abstract (maximum 150 words).

Please stay tuned for more information. Questions? Contact us.

The First Media Ecology Association Student Symposium

Saturday, February 3rd, 2024

The Media Ecology Association is proud to announce our first student symposium, scheduled for Saturday, February 3rd, 2024, exclusively conducted online. This symposium is aimed at offering students of all levels an opportunity to present their media ecology scholarship as the centerpiece of an official organizational event. The symposium will feature panels of student work throughout the day, conducted via Zoom, and each panel will be assigned a respondent from the MEA Executive Board for constructive feedback aimed at celebrating and advancing scholarship in our field.

Participation is limited to undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate students officially enrolled at institutions of higher learning. Attendance, however, is open to the general public. 

Schedule at a Glance

 9:00–9:30 AM  Welcome     Address (Mike Plugh)
 9:30–10:45 AM  Panel Session   #1 (Brazil)
 10:45 AM–12:00 PM  Panel Session   #2 (Toronto)
 12:00–1:00 PM  Lunch Break
 1:00–1:30 PM  Symposium   Address (Lance Strate)
 1:30–2:45 PM  Panel Session   #3 (Brazil)
 3:00–4:15  PM  Panel Session   #4 (International)
 4:15–4:30 PM  Closing Remarks (Mike   Plugh)

All times are Eastern Standard Time (EST). Compare time at different locations. 

Full Schedule

Download the full schedule that includes all panel and presenter information in PDF form.


Registration is free to all MEA members. Non-members can register for $10. In order to receive the Zoom link for the event, all participants and attendees must register.


First Letter of My Alphabet by Lance Strate


First Letter of My Alphabet is a personal pentateuch, populated by a diverse cast of characters that include Adam and Eve, Moses, Saul, Qohelet, Joan of Arc, Marie Curie, Brigitte Bardot, Max Weinberg, an assortment of superheroes, the Tailors of Eternity, angels and avatars, and the Supreme Being in myriad manifestations. Flashes of humor mix with bittersweet memory, poignant longings for escape are juxtaposed with calls for resistance and transcendence, sound and vision, speech and inscription, language and symbol, history and memory, past and present, the particular and the universal, the intellectual and the ineffable, all come together in a volume that speaks to flesh and blood and mind and soul as one. First Letter of My Alphabet Lance Strate NeoPoiesis Press/September 14, 2023 5.5”x8.5” perfect bound, paper/ $16.96 USD/ 140pages ISBN: 979-8-9858336-4-5

Purchase a copy now!


“Lance Strate has reached poetic Nirvana in his new collection First Letter of My Alphabet. Strate covers big philosophic territory with simplicity and exquisite language. This is truly a collection showcasing the sparkle of words spread wide and deep.”
 - Doris White, Professor of Language, Literature, Culture, and Writing, William Paterson University

“This is an inspired, frightening hopeful book. Anchored in Hebraic tradition, some of Strate’s poems call to mind the apocalyptic Dylan of Hard Rain, the Coleman Barks version of Rumi, and The Book of Revelations. But there is levity too–wit, wisdom and the lightning connectivity of ‘wordplay’ to take us laterally into unexpected illuminations.”
 - Robert Priest, poet, playwright, and songwriter, author of Reading the Bible Backwards and If I Didn’t Love the River

“This personal collection of mnemonics moves me beyond measure. It is a playful masterpiece of persistence and patience. Lance Strate is simply the best poet I know.”
 - Michelle Shocked, singer-songwriter

For more information about First Letter of My Alphabet, please visit or contact Dale Winslow at 

Contact: Dale Winslow, NeoPoiesis Press
Phone: (250) 812-1031

Call for Reviewers

MEA @ NCA 2024

"Communication for Greater Regard"

The MEA program planners are actively searching for volunteers to review submissions for the Media Ecology Division at the 110th Annual Convention of the National Communication Association in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA. 

Reviewing submissions is more than academic service. It gives us as members of the MEA a chance to uplift scholarly works that speak to the intellectual tradition of our field and extend that tradition into new realms of conversation. 

For more information or to volunteer to be a reviewer please contact the NCA Liaison and MEA Division Planner, Austin Hestdalen via email ( and add your name to our reviewer list for NCA. 

Stay in Touch w/ the MEA via on Social Media and Email!

Historically, the MEA’s email discussion list has provided online conversation for members and friends of the Media Ecology Association. Subscribers use the list to share views, exchange information, and learn about interesting events related to media ecology. And don't forget to follow MEA on Facebook and X (formerly Twitter)

Subscribe Today!

Are you interested in media ecology and have some questions about it? Are you working on a study related to media ecology and searching for advice? Are you an instructor looking for a media ecology expert to invite as a virtual guest speaker to one of your classes?

Get in touch with us! We are happy to schedule a “virtual coffee” appointment with you. Simply fill out the form below to set up a short call or virtual meeting with a scholar from the MEA.

The format is open to all. We especially encourage students and early-career scholars interested in media ecology to get in touch with us.

Do you have a background in media ecology and would like to volunteer for virtual coffee meetings with those looking to learn more about it? Send an email to Julia M. Hildebrand.

Arrange a Virtual Coffee appointment on our website. 

Book Reviewers Wanted!

Have you read a good book with connections to Media Ecology?  Please consider submitting a review for publication in Explorations in Media Ecology.  Are you reading a new book for use in an upcoming class?  Please consider submitting a review and helping out other scholars looking for new texts.  Do you just like writing book reviews? Consider writing one for EME!!  :)  Contact for more information and to get a format template.  Reviews should be between 1000 and 2000 words.

Back Issues of EME

Pedagogy Sections Include Online Teaching

Access all back issues of Explorations in Media Ecology in the Members Area on the MEA website. These back issues include pedagogy sections that contain information about teaching, including teaching online.

MEA Membership Renewal Reminder

It is not too late to renew your membership by paying your dues.  Please log into the website at, and then log in using your email ID and password and follow the directions. You may pay online via PayPal or pay by check made payable to the Media Ecology Association and mailed to our treasurer, Paul Soukup, S.J., at the Communication Department; Santa Clara University; 500 El Camino Real; Santa Clara, CA  95053 USA. For those outside the U.S., you may also pay by Western Union money order sent to  If you wish to change your membership, please drop Paul Soukup a note. 

*Please note: The Media Ecology Association Executive Board decided that the newsletter will be available online to all interested readers. However, only members can be featured in the newsletter itself. If you are a MEA member, please fill out this form (include a call to submit material+ link). 

Message from the Editor: A Year in Rear-View

Austin Hestdalen, Duquesne University

I invite members to submit content in any of the below areas of interest listed for publication in our monthly newsletter. 

  • Media Ecology - Booknotes: A segment originally appearing in the first few issues of In Media ResBooknotes offers membership the opportunity to contribute short reviews of books that are either directly or tangentially related to the study of media ecology and offer the potential for reconsidering important aspects of media ecological study.
  • Media Ecology - Scholarship In Brief: The scholarship in brief segment appeared in the earliest issues of the newsletter and offered frameworks for revisiting what might be described as the foundational texts of media ecology. This segment offers membership the opportunity to discuss both old and new interpretations of 'canonical' works in media ecology. 
  • Media Ecology at Work: An older segment in which members have the chance to parse the professional and practical implications of media ecology in their daily lives. Contributions take an almost essayistic format in which membership contemplate how media ecology might inform everyday activities of work, play, and anything in between. 
  • Media Ecology and the Arts: This segment focuses on ever-emerging considerations of media in music, and the visual, literary, performance, and plastic arts. Contributions contemplate media and the artistic counter-environments that allow us to negotiate media constraints.
  • Cornering Media Ecology: A new segment that invites media ecologists to offer critical understandings of media and the competing ecologies they generate in human communication. Contributions can include anything from critical reinterpretations of media ecological texts to those that parse the implications of the media ecological approach in a variety of contexts. 
  • General Letters to the Editor: This segment invites membership to share thoughts both on the newsletter and the MEA as whole and is open to any form discussion and critique. Contributions are encouraged to offer insights into how the newsletter and association might extend the study of media ecology in ways that reflect the interests of the membership. 

Contributions to any of the above segments should be submitted to the newsletter editor, Austin Hestdalen (

Please be sure to include the name of segment for which you are submitting in the subject line.

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