Matthew Jordan


Associate Professor and Head of the Department of Film Production and Media Studies,
Director, News Literacy Initiative


  • Journalism & Media
  • Digital Media Technologies

Focus Areas:

  • Media Studies
  • News Literacy
  • Fake News


  • Jordan directs Penn State's News Literacy Initiative and can talk about the state of local news and the journalism industry, including the spread of misinformation, the impact of digital technology and what it means for democracy and society.
  • His research focuses on the role of media on everyday culture and on how different popular media forms and media technologies are used – and have been used - to constitute and reify aspects of personal identity and cultural ideology.

Matthew Jordan is a critical media scholar, whose research focuses on the role of media in everyday culture, including on personal identity and cultural ideology. He teaches courses on media studies, cultural studies, film studies, sound culture and critical theory. In addition to his role as associate professor and head of the Department of Film and Media Studies in Penn State’s Bellisario College of Communications, Jordan also directs the University’s News Literacy Initiative. The mission of the News Literacy Initiative is to provide strategies to help students and citizens navigate the news media landscape and be able to tell the difference between what’s reliable information and what’s not. Jordan also co-hosts the initiative’s weekly podcast, “News Over Noise.”

Jordan is the author of two books, including his most recent, “Danger Sound Klaxon!: The Horn that Changed History,” published in 2023 by University of Virginia Press. By charting the meteoric rise and eventual fall of the Klaxon automobile horn, Jordan highlights how perceptions of sound-producing technologies are guided by, manipulated, and transformed through advertising strategies, public debate, consumer reactions and governmental regulations.

In The Media

“This works in that kind of environment, where people are exhausted and nobody is going to check anymore.”

"Fox News runs minute-by-minute ratings, and ties their storylines and coverage to what its audience wants to hear."

How To Cover Trump? CNN On Defensive As Media Wring Hands -- Again

from International Business Times May 11, 2023

"Responsible journalism verifies fact before publishing it."

“I’m not sure that people get persuaded by these ads. I think it tends to confirm the opinions that they already have.”

“Sounds are all relative.”

From fake news to fabricated video, can we preserve our shared reality?

from The Christian Science Monitor February 22, 2018

“The term ‘fake news’ as a kind of an epithet kind of rises and falls.”

"In fact, media researchers have shown that bleeping words actually draws attention to them and that audiences perceive the frequency of profanity to be higher when words are bleeped."

'Barbie' breaks records and barriers

from The Daily Item August 4, 2023

“By the end, the movie says ‘you can’t idealize women, you have to embrace all of it’ and I think that’s a healthy message.”

“Netflix is trying to be international in the same way as the big movie studios, but it fills in niches that those studios aren’t.”

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