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A current awareness resource for students & faculty members in Business & Economics

MediaToil: database of media content concerning the oil sands

Published by Mark Bodnar

To be honest, I'm really not sure what business or economics class or project might require this resource, but it was just too cool not to share...

MediaToil: Studying the evolution and media struggle over Canada's bituminous sands
Mediatoil is a SSHRC funded research project interested in the competing media representations of Canada’s bituminous sands - also known as oil or tar sands - as seen through the promotional images and documents created by key stakeholders.

Essentially, the researchers behind MediaToil have created a searchable database of "text and images [concerning the oil sands] produced in public documents and campaigns by select industry, government and civil society actors" since the 1960s.

Such material is prone to disappearing quickly, so I'm sure both current and future researchers will be grateful to have such a preserved and well-described collection to analyze.  And the MediaToil team has even thrown in a 70-page comic book discussing the oil sands from multiple perspectives!

For more on MediaToil, check out this detailed DeSmogCanada post: New Public Database Charts Decades of Oilsands Advertising.

Interested in learning more about the oil sands?  Image credit: Alluvial Fan, Albian Sands, Muskeg River Mine, Fort McKay, Alberta, Canada (B2401546), by Louis Helbig.

As you might expect, we have a few hundred books, ebooks, and reports on the topic in the SFU Library collection, including this amazing book featuring artistic aerial photos of the oil sands and short essays by stakeholders from many perspectives: Beautiful Destruction (note).

-- MarkB
Mark Bodnar 
Economics & Business Librarian

Note: Going full circle...  the banner image on the MediaToil site is a slice from one of the photos from Beautiful Destruction, shown above. See also the author's site featuring many more pictures from the same book. (Full disclosure: the author, Louis Helbig, is a good friend of mine and two of his pictures are on my office wall.) :-)

Image credit: Alluvial Fan, Albian Sands, Muskeg River Mine, Fort McKay, Alberta, Canada (B2401546), by Louis Helbig. http://www.beautifuldestruction.ca/