My name is Steven Stiefel. This website resulted from my fascination with and study of communications and the media used to give meaning to information.
I constantly find myself witnessing situations where communications advance a cause or break down, resulting in conflict. As a natural-born people watcher, I enjoy analyzing the mechanics of expression: all of the subtle and sometimes even subconscious ways in which people share our individual needs, our desires, our fears, our enterprises, and every other thought the brain can convey. The root of conflict is the incompatibility of these units of thought.
Each week, I will explore a new facet of communication and/or media. I encourage you to bookmark this website now and/or subscribe so you do not miss updates. The URL is http://communicationsfocus.com.
While I am no expert, I do attempt to produce thoughtful assessments. I also possess a significant amount of hands-on professional experience working in various print and electronic media.
I graduated from Auburn University with a B.A. in Communications, and I am presently pursuing my Master’s of Science in Strategic Communications degree from Troy University. My studies keep me deeply engrossed in discussions regarding digital media, journalism, persuasion, public relations, crisis communications, and more. I owe a lot of my interest to my sister Anita, who is an adjunct professor of communications and my initial inspiration for studying these subjects.
I entered the journalism field on the brink of a fascinating, yet dark chapter for the industry.
I worked my way up from rookie reporter at a small daily newspaper to an editor role before jumping completely from print to online media. For almost five years, I served as editor of Savvy.com, which grew quickly to the top 3 (for three consecutive years) most-visited international publishing sites and social networks, to 8 million monthly uniques and 30 million monthly page views.
In 2008, I took another dramatic step, career-wise, moving from online media to broadcast media as the editorial and marketing manager for MAVERICK TV, a US television network available on DISH Network, among other systems.
Independent of my studies and career, I’m also a student of life. We should never stop learning. I try to soak in as much information as I can, whether it is learning new software, researching a political story in greater depth or considering motivational aspects of the human personality from popular speakers like Brian Tracy or Anthony Robbins. I absorb these things with an open mind and measured skepticism.
These experiences have colored my perception of reality in a way that, I hope, will give me a unique perspective on the topics I write about.
I encourage participation by leaving a comment and sharing your views. That’s what social media and expression are all about!
Some people look at this as a frightening time because of rapid change. I will admit there are times when the media landscape seems bleak from a commercial/professional standpoint. The same is true in the portrait photography business, which is another life I lead. Technology appears to make us obsolete at times.
Yet I can’t help but feel a tinge of anticipation when every single person with a smartphone is potentially breaking a huge news story and institutions of tyranny and control tremble before the growing might of the empowered everyman who finds himself equipped with the simple yet powerful tools to question the status quo and become a thought leader.
How will people use new media to shape the world? The way the mechanical movable type printing introduced mass communication in Renaissance Europe? The same way Sergei Eisenstein innovated cinema in a way that transcended mere propaganda?
Tools change, but it has always been about communicating ideas. Will technology bring us a new era of understanding and a world without borders?
Change is tough, yes, but the human experience is evolving in ways we can barely even comprehend. Those of us who embrace the future with a sense of adventure will be the ones who pioneer new ways forward.
Thank you for reading.