An Ethnographic And Visual Research About Old Media, New Media And Perception Of Change

In Yangon, Myanmar, we carried out exploratory ethnographic fieldwork in order to respond the following questions: in what ways do creative professionals of Yangon use the new means of communication and how are individual expectations influenced by them? how the creative community was shaped during the socialist and military era in relation to the absence/presence of information, consequence of censorship and isolation of the country? We cross multi-sensory ethnographic fieldwork, visual methods of data gathering and qualitative interviews.

While the outside world was developing massive technology related to communication, changing the way people work and live together, the Myanmar communications scenario was controlled by heavy censorship operated by a military junta. Today, lack of literacy and skills for using the Internet, together with very high costs of Internet use and very slow bandwidth, constitute forms of indirect censorship. By exploring the current situation in Yangon, we would like to empirically look into relational Myanmar concepts in their objectification into communication practices.   Our research consists of intercultural communication, since we are Western researchers observing Asian reality. We adopt ethnographic techniques and in particular participant observation, recordings through video, photography and audio.

We aim to identify a set of meanings given to the concept of “freedom of expression” and to determine the relationship between increased freedom of expression and individual expectations