• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

What happens when media technologies are able to interpret our feelings, emotions, moods, and intentions? In this cutting edge new book, Andrew McStay explores that very question and argues that these abilities result in a form of technological empathy. Offering a balanced and incisive overview of the issues raised by ‘Emotional AI’, this book: • Provides a clear account of the social benefits and drawbacks of new media trends and technologies such as emoji, wearables and chatbots • Demonstrates through empirical research how ‘empathic media’ have been developed and introduced both by start-ups and global tech corporations such as Facebook • Helps readers understand the potential implications on everyday life and social relations through examples such as video-gaming, facial coding, virtual reality and cities • Calls for a more critical approach to the rollout of emotional AI in public and private spheres Combining established theory with original analysis, this book will change the way students view, use and interact with new technologies. It should be required reading for students and researchers in media, communications, the social sciences and beyond.

Group Sentimentality
Group Sentimentality

In the heyday of Rome’s Colosseum of 80 AD onwards, emperors had the final say on whether gladiators would live, die or win freedom. Less well known is that they had a phalanx of advisors closely watching the crowd. These were ancient sentiment analysts, charged with what today is referred to as ‘social listening’. While emperors were able to do what they liked, as with politicians today, they were keenly mindful of the rise and ebbs of citizens’ emotion. The difference between then and now is that while political life is inextricably connected with emotions and identity, today this is measurable. What modern ‘sentiment analysis’ provides is a gauge to calculate collective emotions, fellow-feeling and opinion.

Sentiment analysis is principally about making ...

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