KOME 2023-12-07T16:10:49+01:00 János Tóth Open Journal Systems <p>KOME is a theory and pure research-oriented journal of communication studies and related fields. Therefore theoretical researches and discussions that help to understand better, or reconceptualize the understanding of communication or the media are its center of interests; being either an useful supplement to, or a reasonable alternative to current models and theories. Given the connection between theory and empirical research, we are open to submissions of empirical papers if the research demonstrates a clear endorsement of communication and media theories. We are also committed to the ideas of trans- and interdisciplinarity and prefer topics that are relevant for more than one special discipline of social sciences. Articles published in KOME should represent the diversity that comprises the study of communication and related disciplines, regardless of philosophical paradigms and in favor of methodological pluralism. KOME encourage the use of non-sexist language in research writing.</p> Peak and Plateau Communication Experiences (PCEs) 2023-08-24T09:42:14+02:00 Ronald D. Gordon <p>Maslow’s landmark conception of the generalised “peak experience” is revisited. Next the concept of “peak” communication experiences (PCEs), originally derived four decades ago from the generalised Maslow model, is reviewed. PCEs are defined as our times of highest happiness and fulfilment arising from our communication with others. While “peak” communication experiences have received scant conceptual and empirical attention, the work that has been done is briefly surveyed. The under-told story of Maslow’s significant end-of-life conceptualising of “plateau” experiencing is then highlighted, and it is recommended that “plateau” communication experiences be included within the upper-distribution PCE domain going forward. The development of a “positive communication” paradigm within the communication discipline is traced, and it is suggested there now exists a foundational knowledge structure to provide conceptual home for inquiry into PCEs. Lastly, suggestions for the exploration of both “plateau” and “peak” communication experiences (PCEs) are offered.</p> 2023-12-07T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Ronald D. Gordon The Disinformation Reaction to the Russia–Ukraine War 2023-09-04T12:30:51+02:00 Baptista João Pedro Rivas-de-Roca Rubén Gradim Anabela Loureiro Marlene <p>The beginning of the war in Ukraine generated a wave of disinformation in Europe. Our research intends to cognise the reaction of disinformation agents to the outbreak of war, analysing publications checked by Iberian fact-checkers during the first ten days of the conflict. Specifically, we used Voyant Tools online software to perform a quantitative textual analysis, which allowed us to survey the most relevant topics, formats for spreading disinformation and media platforms. We also analysed the presence of political leaders, countries and military terminologies. Our findings indicate that video is the most common format to disseminate disinformation content, namely, to illustrate war scenarios. In addition, our research also showed that online video platforms, especially YouTube, are closer to terms that portray military actions. This may have implications for fostering a warmongering feeling. Finally, we found that the fake content checked was mostly favourable to Ukraine, which raises new poignant arguments for the contemporary debate about disinformation in war.</p> 2023-12-07T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Baptista João Pedro, Rivas-de-Roca Rubén, Gradim Anabela, Loureiro Marlene Patterns and Actors of Disinformation: Analysis of Debunked Hoaxes in Spain in 2022 2023-10-30T09:51:25+01:00 Blanco-Herrero David Castillo-Abdul Bárbara Rodríguez Luis Miguel Romero <p>This research examines the patterns followed by disinformation in Spain through the fact-checking activities of, the leading fact-checking organisation in Spain. We sought to answer three research questions: 1. What are the predominant topics of the hoaxes debunked by 2. Who is responsible for the creation and dissemination of these hoaxes? and 3. In what formats and platforms are these hoaxes generally distributed? For this purpose, we conducted a quantitative content analysis of 729 hoaxes fact-checked in 2022 by Maldito Bulo. 40.7% of the debunked hoaxes were related to social issues, while 37.2% focused on political affairs. Regarding those responsible for the creation and dissemination, most of the hoaxes came from unidentified sources, although when the identity is known, the most frequent contributors are social media accounts, alternative and partisan pseudo-media and journalists. These results explore the general disinformation scenario in Spain, using fact-checking as an approximation and discussing its implications.</p> 2023-12-07T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Blanco-Herrero David, Castillo-Abdul Bárbara, Rodríguez Luis Miguel Romero Social Media Influencers Defined by Adolescents 2023-10-30T10:31:35+01:00 Zozaya-Durazo Luisa Feijoo Beatriz Sádaba-Chalezquer Charo <p>Social media influencers have emerged as digital celebrities, positioning themselves as role models for different audiences, particularly young people. Due to the inherent social and psychological immaturity of adolescents, they are considered a more vulnerable group, and thus, their digital behaviour and its potential impact on their identity development should be carefully studied. This study aimed to explore how adolescents perceive social media influencers. Sixtytwo adolescents between the ages of 11 and 17 living in Spain participated in 12 focus groups. The study attempted to understand how adolescents define the concept of social media influencers and which profiles they follow in order to identify the attributes they prioritised. This study describes the categories proposed by the adolescents, as well as the influence generated by social media influencers based on the age and socio-economic status of the interviewees. Additionally, the study reveals that adolescents from lower socio-economic levels and adolescents between 16 and 17 years old expressed a desire to become social media influencers.</p> 2023-12-07T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Zozaya-Durazo Luisa, Feijoo Beatriz, Sádaba-Chalezquer Charo Stigmatisation or Destigmatisation? 2023-10-30T10:51:04+01:00 Yang Lai Fong <p>Mental health has emerged as an international priority to secure health, well-being and human development. Media are important sources of health information, and this gives media a powerful voice in contributing to the creation, perpetuation, evolution and/or attenuation of stigma towards mental illness. Through employing stigmatisation as the theoretical framework and qualitative content analysis as the research method, this study examined the coverage of mental health problems during the Covid-19 pandemic by Malaysian legacy and online newspapers. Six dimensions of stigma (concealability, origin, course, disruptiveness, aesthetics and peril) were examined and it was found that individual level of origin and peril were the most prominent dimensions of stigma found in the reporting. In addition, the newspapers focused on promoting mental health awareness and literacy in their destigmatisation effort, while reflecting either a positive or neutral valence in their coverage. The implications of the findings were discussed with regard to the role of media in reporting mental health problems and destigmatisation of mental illness.</p> 2023-12-07T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Yang Lai Fong