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Abstract

Dr. Robert Byrd is a former newspaper manager, reporter, editor, photographer and designer, who worked for community newspapers throughout the Southeast for more than seven years. He returned to academia to help educate a new generation of journalists for a ever-changing media industry. His teaching interests are in visual communication, multimedia journalism, social media, media history, and media criticism. Dr. Byrd's research focuses on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer representations in both the LGBTQ and mainstream media. His most recent work explores LGBTQ representations in television sitcoms. Dr. Byrd is also interested in LGBTQ media history, in particular, its role in providing a queer memory in contemporary politics. He is a member of the AEJMC's GLBT interest group as well as the history, cultural and critical studies, and newspaper and online news divisions. For more information about Dr. Byrd's research and teaching, visit his website at www.robertdbyrd.com.

Dr. Melissa Janoske is an assistant professor and head of the public relations major in the Department of Journalism and Strategic Media at the University of Memphis. Dr. Janoske earned her B.A. in organizational communication and a M.A. in Corporate and Professional Communication, both from Radford University in Radford, Virginia. She finished her Ph.D. at the University of Maryland in 2014, writing her dissertation on how online communities formed and aided individuals and organizations with crisis response and recovery. Her dissertation was funded by the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (START), a Department of Homeland Security Center of Excellence. Dr. Janoske has also published research on both crisis and social media more generally, including best practices in crisis communication, visual communication, social media activism, and online communities and social networking.

Dr. Stephanie Madden is an assistant professor of public relations in the Department of Journalism and Strategic Media. She has a passion for advocacy and social justice issues, and her research focuses on the intersections between activism, risk and crisis communication, public safety, and social media. Dr. Madden earned her B.A. in communication studies from Vanderbilt University and her M.A. and Ph.D. in communication from the University of Maryland. Prior to pursuing her Ph.D., Dr. Madden was a full-time researcher at the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (START).

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