Social Science Matters Speaker Series: Patricia Hill Collins

Wednesday, April 18, 2018 - 4:00pm
Event Date: 
Wed, 04/18/2018 - 16:00
This academic year, speakers will focus on pressing issues around gender, race, and social class inequality.

New Chief Undergraduate Advisor


Prof Allison Butler aims to strengthen and deepen relationships across SBS.   

(Photo credit: Matthew Medeiros)

Allison Butler, Ph.D.

25 Years of Critical Pedagogy

Friday, October 27, 2017 - 7:30pm to 9:00pm
Event Date: 
Fri, 10/27/2017 - 19:30
25 Years of Critical Pedagogy: The Media Education Foundation and Independent Film

Comm Fall Party & Picnic (Grad Students)

Sunday, September 24, 2017 - 1:00pm to 4:00pm
Event Date: 
Sun, 09/24/2017 - 13:00
Please join us as we welcome new and returning faculty and graduate students for good conversation and eats. Friends and Family are welcome!

Four @ Four

Thursday, December 7, 2017 - 4:00pm
Event Date: 
Thu, 12/07/2017 - 16:00
An evening of slam research presentations by SBS faculty members over hors d'oeuvres and beverages. This event will feature presentations from our own Assistant Professor Kimberlee Perez (Communication), along with Ventura Perez (Anthropology), Jamie Rowen (Political Science), and Mwangi wa Githinji (Economics).

ISSR Five Year Anniversary Celebration

Friday, September 22, 2017 - 2:00pm to 4:00pm
Event Date: 
Fri, 09/22/2017 - 14:00
The Institute for Social Science Research (ISSR) is celebrating its five-year anniversary! Join Chancellor Subbaswamy, Interim Provost John McCarthy, ISSR Director Laurel Smith-Doerr, and other key constituents in ISSR and UMass as we celebrate this milestone. 

Comm Professor Awarded Fellowship

TIDE working session with Prof. Leda Cooks

Comm Professor Leda Cooks has been selected as one of 12 TIDE (Teaching for Inclusiveness, Divers


Jonathan Corpus Ong

Profile Photo
Jonathan Ong, Associate Professor
Contact Info
First Name: 
Last Name: 
Middle Name/Initial: 
Position 1: 
Associate Professor, Global Digital Media
Position 2: 
Prior to joining the faculty at UMass Amherst, I was Associate Professor in Media and Communication at the University of Leicester and Assistant Professor in Sociology at Hong Kong Baptist University. I am Co-Editor-in-Chief (with Diane Negra) of the journal Television & New Media, housed in the Department of Communication at UMass Amherst from January 2018.
Office Location: 
N354 Integrative Learning Center
Office Hours: 
Fall 2017 office hours: T 2:30-4:30 & by appt.
Phone Number: 
413 545-1311 (leave message)
Additional Info
Courses Taught: 

Undergraduate: Social Media in Everyday Life; Media Solidarities in the Age of Global Crisis

Current Projects: 

I am the founder and convenor of the British Council-funded Newton Tech4Dev Network, which is a global network of academics, humanitarians, and technology experts, studying emergent media in low- and middle-income countries. I contribute to the following projects: 1) digital labor in the global South, focusing on diverse kinds of online freelance work in the Philippines and the emergence of new social hierarchies. I currently lead the research strand on online political trolls and the production of disinformation in Duterte’s Philippines, and 2) entertainment media and convivial culture following events of rupture, drawing from case studies on the European refugee crisis and post-Katrina New Orleans.


PhD, Sociology, University of Cambridge, UK

MSc, Politics and Communication, London School of Economics, UK

BA, Communication, Loyola Schools - Ateneo de Manila, Philippines


The central concern of my work is the ethics of media, which I approach as the moral and social consequences of media and communication technologies in the everyday lives of minority groups and vulnerable communities, especially those in the global South. Two interrelated strands of research extend from this concern: 1) the first is on media witnessing and the moral responsibilities of media institutions, media workers, and media audiences to vulnerable others; 2) the second is on vulnerable communities and their uses of digital media for voice and participation, everyday sociality, and coping or healing. My research develops an ethnographic and decolonial approach that sensitively embeds media practice within rich local histories and ordinary motivations while engaging with normative debates about media justice and cosmopolitan ethics in complex multicultural societies.

I have published extensively in the areas of global media; disasters, development and humanitarian communication; ethnography of social media; creative and digital labor; mediated protest, witnessing and solidarities; and ethics of communication. I have supervised PhD students working in the areas of media in everyday life among Nigerian migrants in London, digital protest in class-divided Thailand, and Belgian audiences of distant suffering. I welcome grad students working in these research areas.



Rovisco, M. & Ong, J.C. (2016) (eds.). Taking the Square: Mediated Dissent and Occupations of Public Space. London & NY: Rowman & Littlefield.

Ong, J.C. (2015). The Poverty of Television: The Mediation of Suffering in Class-Divided Philippines. London & NY: Anthem Press.


Ong, J.C. (forthcoming, 2017). “Queer Cosmopolitanism in the Disaster Zone: ‘My Grindr Became the United Nations’”. International Communication Gazette. (Special Issue on Postnormative Cosmopolitanisms, ed. Miyase Christensen)

Ong, J.C. & Combinido, P. (forthcoming, 2017). “Local Aid Workers as Entrepreneurial Survivors: Aspiring for Mobility in the Digital Humanitarian Project”. Critical Asian Studies.

Madianou, M., Ong, J.C., Longboan, L. & Cornelio, J. (2016). "The Appearance of Accountability: Communication Technologies and Power Asymmetries in Humanitarian Aid and Disaster Recovery." Journal of Communication 66(6): 960-981.

Ong, J.C. (2015). "Witnessing Distant and Proximal Suffering within a 'Zone of Danger': Lay Moralities of Media Audiences in the Philippines". International Communication Gazette 77(7), 607-621.

Ong, J.C. (2014). ‘”Witnessing” or “Mediating” Distant Suffering? Ethical Questions Across Moments of Text, Production and Reception’. Television & New Media 15(3): 179-196.

Ong, J.C (2009). “Where Is the Cosmopolitan? Locating Cosmopolitanism in Media and Cultural Studies.” Media, Culture and Society, 31(3): 449-466.


Ong, J.C. & Lin, T.Z. (2017). “Plague in the City: Digital Media as Shaming Apparatus Toward Mainland Chinese 'Locusts' in Hong Kong”. In Aiello, G., Oakley, K., & Tarantino, M. (eds.). Communication and the City. New York: Peter Lang.

Ong, J.C. (2015). “Charity Appeals as ‘Poverty Porn’? Production Ethics in Representing Suffering Children and Typhoon Haiyan Beneficiaries in the Philippines”. Mayer, V., Banks, M. & Caldwell, J. (eds.). Production Studies, the Sequel! Cultural Studies of Global Media Industries. NY: Routledge.

“Digital Sweatshops in Disaster Zones: Who Pays the Real Price for Innovation?”. The Guardian. October 11, 2016. (

“Typhoon Grindr: Love, Liberation and Post-Disaster Sex in the Philippines”. IRIN Humanitarian News & Analyses. September 8, 2015. (

“Does Humanitarian Aid Mend Communities or Break Them?”. The Guardian. March 27, 2015.


“Digital Sweatshops in Disaster Zones: Who Pays the Real Price for Innovation?”. The Guardian. October 11, 2016. (

“Typhoon Grindr: Love, Liberation and Post-Disaster Sex in the Philippines”. IRIN Humanitarian News & Analyses. September 8, 2015. (

“Does Humanitarian Aid Mend Communities or Break Them?”. The Guardian. March 27, 2015.

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