Whitney Phillips, School of Journalism and Communication

picture of journalism professor Whitney Phillips

Whitney Phillips

Assistant Professor, Digital Platforms and Ethics
Practice Areas: Political Communication, Digital Cultures, Media Ecologies, Media Ethics, Online Ethics, Rightwing Media Cultures, Moral Panics, Conspiratorial Belief, Narrative and Identity

Faculty bio 

Journalism professor Whitney Phillips studies where political communication, interpersonal communication, and information dysfunction collide. Her research shows that, while we need to be plugged into the news cycle, we also need to consider issues of citizen wellbeing and mental health, since nothing shuts down engaged citizenship faster than stress and overwhelm. Equally critical is interpersonal communication. According to her research, we need to focus on strategies for having difficult conversations about issues that make us angry and people we fundamentally disagree with. 

Recent Media:
An essential guide for mindful posting (The Markup, Feb. 17, 2024)
How Instagram cat influencers are helping break news in Gaza (The Daily Beast, Dec. 12, 2023)
Substack has a Nazi problem (The Atlantic, Nov. 28, 2023)
Activation and alienation over Israel-Hamas war fueled by ‘panic machines’ in our pockets (The Oregonian, Nov. 17, 2023)
Meet Sister Cindy, the Inspiration For TikTok’s Pro-Pegging Summer Jam (Rolling Stone, July 6, 2023)
The dangerous demonology of Ron DeSantis (MSNBC, June 18, 2023)
Why Washington is crazy for Chinese balloons and UFOs (Roll Call, Feb. 16, 2023)
How a viral teen app became the center of a sex trafficking conspiracy (The Washington Post, Nov. 9, 2022)
How to cope with political panic (NBC News, Nov. 8, 2022)
The term “White Christian nationalism” is on the rise. Here’s what journalists should know about using it (NiemanLab, Nov. 7, 2022)
Satanic panic is making a comeback, fueled by QAnon believers and GOP influencers (NBC News, Sept. 14, 2022)
January 6, Trump and the rise of America's dangerous 'shadow gospel' (NBC News, July 21, 2022)
Before massacre, Uvalde gunman frequently threatened teen girls online (Texas Tribune, May 28, 2022)