This week, Dami and I created an episode of Media Nouveau in which we examined the website, PatientsLikeMe. Dami and I are both interested in health & medicine (Dami would like to go into nursing and I, public health), so we were both fascinated, yet befuddled by the idea of a website that breaks the typical bounds of patient privacy with the goal of speeding up research and promoting patient-centered care. We benefitted profusely from the lessons we learned from planning/recording our first episode, which allowed us to work more efficiently and ultimately, in my opinion, create a more organized, concise episode. For instance, we created a detailed script in order to make our argument clear and easy-to-follow for the listener. I feel much more comfortable writing an argument than I do orating one, especially considering that I sometimes feel very particular over word choice or syntax, so it was helpful for me to have a script to refer to, even though I did not follow it verbatim. This practice allowed us to clearly and fairly present arguments both for and against PLM while considering several aspects of the site and its implications.

Even so, I still know that there was room for improvement in our episode. Because the format of Media Nouveau is centered upon a question, I think we could have improved our question so that it was less vague and more specifically tailored to our argument. I think it would have been really interesting to use our question in place of a thesis statement in the context of a typical written argument. More specifically, our question could have specifically pointed to our main arguments in the episode (privacy, collective intelligence) and we could have referred back to it and the end of each ‘paragraph’ or idea that we discussed. Creating such a format, however, would have been an intricate process for which we simply did not have the time given that we were both unable to work on the project during Fall Break.

Producing this episode was in many ways an exercise in critical thinking in that Dami and I evaluated PLM from a myriad of perspectives, often incorporating outside sources in order to shape, bolster, or provide a counterpoint to our argument. We also took special care to consider the implications of PLM given current events (Trump signed the EO ending key ACA subsidies on the same day that we recorded the episode) and apply our analysis to real-world events. In that sense, we interacted with a variety of external factors in order to formulate our arguments and to make more sense of the impact of PLM.

Post Author: Katie

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