Uses and Gratifications theory (U&G) shows an interest in studying an audience’s uses of the media and what they are hoping to get out of the experience. This theory to me best describes any international encounter. For example when signing up for International PR, I did not know what to expect, I did have expectations of what I wanted to get out of the course, but I did not know if those expectations were going to met.
When it comes to social networking U&G would probably be the best the theory to use in describing any experience. For example now that we are so involved with computer-mediated communication, individuals have expectations for what they are hoping to get out of sites. For someone who has never used any Web 2.0 applications might have higher expectations of what they would get out of the experience. This semester I enrolled in Theories of Mass Communication and in this course we collaborated our experiences into writing a team autoethnography on our thoughts through communicating through other mediums beside face-to-face. To be honest, I did learn a lot from the experience because I was working with an International student. This was a struggle but at the same time it made me realize that I can work with others, even if they are not fluent in English. It was hard sometimes to try and translate exactly what she was saying in e-mails or through our team blog and it was even harder to read her emotions because that is a challenge to begin with regardless of where someone is from. Working with an international student is an experience in itself.