Gina M. Masullo is an Associate Professor in the School of Journalism and Associate Director of the Center for Media Engagement in the Moody College of Communication at UT Austin.
Dr. Masullo’s research focuses on how the digital space both connects and divides people and how that influences society, individuals, and journalism. She is the author of Online Incivility and Public Debate: Nasty Talk and The New Town Hall: Why We Engage Personally with Politicians and co-editor of Scandal in a Digital Age. She is writing her fourth book, Midlife Sapphic Revelation in the Digital Age: How Digital Media Support Coming Out Late.
Before entering academia Dr. Masullo spent 20 years as a newspaper and online reporter and editor, with most of her professional experience at The Post-Standard in Syracuse, NY. During her tenure as a journalist, she covered crime, courts, prisons, and state and local government, as well as served as an assistant city editor, bureau chief, and copy editor. Near the end of her journalistic career, she wrote and blogged about parenting and young children for the newspaper. She holds a B.A. in communication from Franciscan University of Steubenville in Ohio and an M.A. and a Ph.D. in mass communication from Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications. Before coming to UT, she spent two years as an Assistant Professor at The University of Southern Mississippi’s School of Mass Communication and Journalism.
In her work at the grant-funded Center for Media Engagement, she conducts theoretically drive and empirically rigorous solutions to news organizations’ challenges. Currently, she and her CME colleagues are working on a connective democracy initiative, funded by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. The initiative seeks to develop practical solutions to the problem of societal division.
Dr. Masullo teaches a variety of undergraduate courses, including Social Media Journalism, and Online Incivility and Public Debate. She also teaches graduate courses, such as Fundamentals of Statistics. Follow her on X (formerly known as Twitter) at @ginammasullo.
Masullo, G.M. (2023). A new solution to political divisiveness: Priming a sense of common humanity through Facebook meme-like posts. New Media & Society. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1177/14614448231184633
Lu, S., Liang, H., & Masullo, G.M. (2023). Selective avoidance: Understanding how position and proportion of online incivility influence news engagement. Communication Research, 50(4), 387-409. https://doi.org/10.1177/00936502221130837
Masullo, G.M., Tenenboim, O., & Lu, S. (2023). “Toxic atmosphere effect”: Uncivil online comments taint perceptions of news outlet, audience. Journalism: Theory, Practice, and Criticism, 24(1), 101-119. https://doi.org/10.1177/14648849211064001
Masullo, G.M., Wilner, T., & Stroud, N.J. (2022). What social media could be: Normative frameworks for evaluating digital public spaces. Social Media + Society, 8(4), 1-11. https://doi.org.10.1177/20563051221130447
Masullo, G.M., Wilhelm, C., Lee, T., Gonçalves, J., Riedl, M.J., Stroud, N.J. (2022). Signaling news outlet trust in a Google Knowledge Panel: A conjoint experiment in Brazil, Germany, and the United States. New Media & Society. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1177/14614448221135860
Overgaard, C.S. B., Masullo, G.M., Duchovnay, M., & Moore, C. (2022). Theorizing connective democracy: A new way to bridge political divides. Mass Communication and Society, 25(6), 861-885. https://doi.org/10.1080/15205436.2022.2119870
Masullo, G.M., & Duchovnay, M. (2022). Extending the spiral of silence: Theorizing a typology of political self-silencing. Communication Studies, 73(5-6), 607-622. https://doi.org/10.1080/1051974.2022.2129401
Masullo, G.M. (2022). Facebook reactions as heuristics: Exploring relationships between reactions and commenting frequency on news about COVID-19. First Monday, 27(8), n.p. https://doi.org/10.5210/fm.v27i8.12674
Masullo, G.M., Riedl, M.J., & Huang, Q.E. (2022). Engagement moderation: What journalists should say to improve online discussions. Journalism Practice, 16(4), 738-754. https://doi.org/10.1080/17512786.2020.1808858
Masullo, G.M., Ziegele, M., Riedl, M.J., Jost, P., & Naab, T. (2022). Effect of a high-person-centered response to commenters who disagree on readers’ positive attitudes toward a news outlet’s Facebook page. Digital Journalism, 10(3), 493-515. https://doi.org/10.1080/21670811.2021.2021376
Masullo, G.M., Shermak, J., Riedl, M.J., Brown, J., & Tenenboim, O. (2022). Online political comments: Americans talk about the election through a “horse-race” lens. Proceedings of the Digital and Social Media track of the Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences [HICSS], Hawaii, 3242-3250. http://hdl.handle.net/10125/79731
Peacock, C., Masullo, G.M., & Stroud, N.J. (2022). The effect of news labels on perceived credibility. Journalism: Theory, Practice, and Criticism, 23(2), 301-319. https://doi.org/10.1177/1464884920971522
Masullo, G.M., Tenenboim, O., & Lu, S. (2021). “Toxic atmosphere effect”: Uncivil online comments taint perceptions of news outlet, audience. Journalism: Theory, Practice, and Criticism. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1177/14648849211064001
Brown, D.K., Wilner, T., & Masullo, G.M. (2021). “It’s just not the whole story”: Black perspectives on protest portrayals. Howard Journal of Communications. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1080/10646175.2021.2012852
Masullo, G.M., Lee, T., & Riedl, M.J. (2021). Signaling news outlet credibility in a Google search. Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly. Advance online publication. https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/10776990211047964