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New Course of the Week – Understanding Media by Understanding Google

This looks like a really interesting class, and I’m putting it on the list for one that I might take if I have the time. It’s called “Understanding Media by Understanding Google.” But it’s not what you think. As the professor says in the intro video, “It’s not a class about Google. It’s a class about the American media and culture, and how they have changed in the 15 years since Google was founded.”

From the Coursera site:

Enrollees in this course learn how to understand the tactics that modern media companies, journalists, marketers, politicians, technologists, and social networks are using to reach them and affect their behavior. They learn how to adopt strategies that put them on an even footing with these entities in achieving their own communications goals. They:

  • think about, react to, and write about half a dozen important books about Google;
  • read a sampling of newspaper and magazine reportage from Google’s entire history;
  • monitor news sites and specialized blogs about the company and its competitors;
  • take note of their own usage of Google and other online resources; and
  • learn how to anticipate the future impact of the company and its competitors on information consumption, creation, and distribution.

Honestly, it sounds really interesting. We live in a hyper-connected world, where people are now likely to have a Google search box within their reach at almost all times. When you ask a question, Google serves up the sites that best answer that. Google now understands our intent before we do, and can make recommendations based on its own understanding of us, without us having to explicitly tell it. The way the world works has changed because of having Google in all places at all times.

Should be an interesting course. Well recommended for anyone who’s also interested in media and marketing.


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