Communication

After Beating Leukemia, Aggie Will Ellis Finds a Cause in Helping Cancer Patients

September 10, 2020
After two decades of volunteer work with cancer charities, Will Ellis (B.A., communication and Italian, ’04) wasn’t about to let the cascading crises of 2020 derail him. Despite pandemic restrictions on in-person events, Ellis raised more than $103,000 in 10 weeks for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS) Greater Bay Area Chapter to win its “Man of the Year” title.

Who Will Kamala Harris Supporters Vote for Now?

December 20, 2019
With California Sen. Kamala Harris out of the race for the Democratic presidential nomination, UC Davis communication professor Magdalena Wojcieszak and colleagues investigated who her supporters are likely to vote for.

What Gamers and Redditors Can Teach Us About Democracy

December 11, 2019
Despite the ongoing threat of misinformation spreading online, UC Davis cognitive scientist Seth Frey still believes in the promise of the internet as a force for political and economic empowerment. The National Science Foundation recently awarded Frey and colleagues at three other universities a $460,000 grant to study how groups create and enforce self-rule in a wide array of domains, including Frey’s focus: Reddit forums (called subreddits) and video games.

How Flu Vaccine Misinformation Spreads Online

December 10, 2019
Social media are a powerful tool to spread information — and misinformation — about health issues such as vaccines and cancer prevention. How does bad information spread online, and what is the best way to stop it? That is a topic being studied by Assistant Professor Jingwen Zhang and her students in the UC Davis Department of Communication.

When Viral Messages Pose Health Threats

Like a disease detective, Jade (Jieyu) Ding Featherstone is on the hunt for a rising global threat to public health. But her territory is Twitter and her target is vaccine misinformation.

For her doctoral research in the Department of Communication, Featherstone is tracking anti-vaccination tweets. Among questions she is exploring: Are there central players behind them? If so, are they bots or humans? Who retweets anti-vaxx messages? What works best in countering their false claims? 

Some US Muslims identify less as Americans due to negative media coverage

March 22, 2019
Negative media portrayals of Muslim Americans can have adverse effects on how they view themselves as citizens and their trust in the U.S. government. In fact, these effects may be stronger than the impact caused by personal discrimination, according to a new study co-authored by Magdalena Wojcieszak, a UC Davis associate professor of communication who researches the effects of media on tolerance, perceptions and polarization.

Can Social Media Help Bridge Our Political Divide?

February 22, 2019
With the political divide growing wider and emotions running hotter, what can we do to help people to better understand each other and work together even when they don’t see eye to eye? Magdalena Wojcieszak, an associate professor of communication at UC Davis, is looking for answers.