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Ontario Tech acknowledges the lands and people of the Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation.

We are thankful to be welcome on these lands in friendship. The lands we are situated on are covered by the Williams Treaties and are the traditional territory of the Mississaugas, a branch of the greater Anishinaabeg Nation, including Algonquin, Ojibway, Odawa and Pottawatomi. These lands remain home to many Indigenous nations and peoples.

We acknowledge this land out of respect for the Indigenous nations who have cared for Turtle Island, also called North America, from before the arrival of settler peoples until this day. Most importantly, we acknowledge that the history of these lands has been tainted by poor treatment and a lack of friendship with the First Nations who call them home.

This history is something we are all affected by because we are all treaty people in Canada. We all have a shared history to reflect on, and each of us is affected by this history in different ways. Our past defines our present, but if we move forward as friends and allies, then it does not have to define our future.

Learn more about Indigenous Education and Cultural Services

Tanner Mirrlees headshot

Tanner Mirrlees


Associate Professor

Communication and Digital Media Studies
Faculty of Social Science and Humanities

I research the globalization of the digital technology and entertainment industries; war, pop culture and technology; work and labour politics in the digital age; critical pedagogy and EdTech; alt-right and social media; technology in society.


  • PhD - Communication and Culture York University and Ryerson University 2008
  • MA - English and Theatre Studies University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario 2002
  • BA - English and Theatre Studies (Honours) University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario 2001
Academic Conferences (2019)
  • Social Media, for Empire’s Ends: Digital Free Trade, Platform Surveillance, Network Propaganda, and CyberWarfare. Ends of Media Symposium, University of Toronto, November 15, 2019.
  • The Chinese Media Century? Not Yet. Paper presented for Union for Democratic Communications 2019, Mass
    Communication and Transnational Empire: 50 years of (transformations since) Herbert Schiller. California State
    University, California, October 31-November 3, 2019.
  • Mainstreaming White Supremacy via YouTube Country Music Videos: The Digital Revival of “Johnny Rebel.” Paper
    presented for British Society of Criminology Conference 2019, Public Criminologies: Community, Conflict and Justice,
    Lincoln, U.K., July 3-5, 2019.
  • Not (Yet) The Chinese Century: The Global Endurance of the US Cultural Industries. Paper presented for The Arts in
    Society Conference, Lisbon, Portugal, June 21st, 2019.
  • The Political Economy of the Cultural Industries, in Canada. Paper presented for the Canadian Political Science
    Association, Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, Vancouver, BC, June 5, 2019.
  • Platform Imperialism, Platform Fascism, and Resistance. Paper presented for the Canadian Communication
    Association, Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, Vancouver, B.C., June 3, 2019.
  • Canadian TV Goes Global: Within and Beyond Cultural Imperialism. Paper presented for the International
    Communication Association 69th annual conference, Blue Sky Workshop: Communication Beyond Boundaries in World
    Entertainment Media, Washington Hilton Hotel, Washington, May 25, 2019. 
Invited Lectures and Talks (2019)
  • The Alt-Right’s Authoritarian Populism (and What We Can Do to Counter It).
    Power of Many: 15th Biennial Convention of the Ontario Federation of Labour Ontario Federation Labour, Sheraton
    Hotel, Toronto, Ontario. November 28th, 2019.
  • A Political Economy of the Cultural Industries, in Canada (book launch of Change and Continuity: Canadian Political
    Economy in the New Millennium, edited by Leah Vosko, Mark Thomas, Carlo Fanelli and Olena Lyubchenko). York
    University, Ontario, October 23, 2019.
  • Mirrlees, Tanner. The Alt-Right’s Threat to Democracy (and What We Can Do to Counter it). Third Age Learning,
    Lakehead University, Orillia, Ontario, October 16, 2019.
  • For whom EdTech matters: Silicon Valley’s higher education ‘massage.’ For Whom The Medium Matters. McLuhan
    Centre Annual Pecha Kucha, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, September 15, 2019.
  • The Digital Revolution and its Discontents. Day 2 - Keynote for Rebuild+, Toronto, Ontario, April 24, 2019.
  • Tactics for Challenging the Alt-Right’s Platformization of Hate. Trump, Technology and the Far Right: Tactics for
    Challenging Right-Wing Extremism in Canada. UOIT, Oshawa, Ontario, January 24, 2019.
Single-authored Books
  • Mirrlees, Tanner. 2016. Hearts and Mines: The U.S. Empire’s Culture Industry. Vancouver,
    B.C.: University of British Columbia Press (UBCP)/Washington: University of Washington Press (320 pages). ***
    Reviewed in European Journal of Communications, Critical Sociology, and Blacklock’s Reporter.
    [2] Mirrlees, Tanner. 2013. Global Entertainment Media: Between Cultural Imperialism and Cultural
    Globalization. New York: Routledge (300 pages). 
Co-authored Books
  • Mirrlees, Tanner, and Shahid Alvi. 2019. EdTech, Inc.: Selling, Automating, and Globalizing Higher
    Education in a Digital Age. New York: Routledge (210 pages).
Co-edited Books
  • Mirrlees, Tanner., and Oliver Boyd-Barrett, eds. 2019. Media Imperialism: Continuity and Change.
    New York: Rowman and Littlefield (350 pages).
  • Mirrlees, Tanner., and Joseph Kispal-Kovacs, eds. 2012. The Television Reader: Critical Perspectives
    in Canadian and US Television Studies. Toronto: Oxford University Press (455 pages). 
Co-Edited Special Journal Issues
  • Andersen, Robin., and Tanner Mirrlees, eds. 2014. “Watching, Playing and Resisting the War
    Society.” Democratic Communiqué 26(2): 1-186.
Additional publications can be viewed here:

UOIT Faculty of Social Science and Humanities Teaching Award

UOIT June 1, 2013

Upon completion of his first year of teaching at UOIT, Dr. Mirrlees was received the award for his inspiring and engaging teaching methods.

Guelph-Humber Student Association Faculty Appreciation Award

June 1, 2011

This award is granted to a professor, selected by students, who demonstrates exceptional teaching skills and a willingness to go above and beyond the course requirements to meet student needs and facilitate a positive learning environment.

Governor General’s Award (Gold Medal)

June 1, 2008

This award is granted to a doctoral student for their outstanding scholastic achievements and graduation with the highest average.

Mirrlees is the president of the Canadian Communication Association (CCA) (2020-2022), the former convenor of the
CCA’s annual meeting for the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, a research associate of the Decimal
Lab, a steering committee member of the Centre on Hate, Bias and Extremism (CHBE), and a co-organizer of The
Capitalism Workshop.
Ontario Tech University, Communication and Digital Media Studies, 2012-present
  • COMM 1100 Introduction to Communication Studies 
  • COMM 2411 Information & Society
  • COMM 2410 Communication and Technology
  • COMM 2270 Entertainment Goes Global
  • COMM 2271 Global Media Industries
  • COMM 3510 Work in the Information Age/Work in the Digital Age
  • COMM 4170 International Communication
  • COMM 4420 Digital Media, Politics and Democracy
  • COMM 4120 War, Propaganda and Media Culture
  • COMM 4120 Watching, Analyzing and Making Digital Media, for Democracy
York University, Department of Communication and Department of Humanities, 2007-2011
  • HUMA 1770 One World: Historical and Cultural Perspectives on Globalization
  • AP/CLTR 2510 Popular Technologies and Cultural Practice
  • AP/COMN 3751 Television as Culture
  • AP/COMN 4804 Global Media, Development Communication
  • AP/COMN 4805 Public Diplomacy as Communication: From the United States to the World 
University of Guelph-Humber, Media Studies Program, 2007-201AHSS 1060 Mass Communication
  • AHSS 1090 Communication, Technology and Culture
  • AHSS 2130 Subcultures and the Mainstream Media
  • MDST 2020 Media Structure and Policy
  • MDST 4080 Globalization and the Global Media  
Ryerson University, Department of Politics and Public Administration, 2008-2012
  • PPA 235 Theories of the State
  • POG 411 Canadian Foreign Policy
  • POL 507 Power, Technology and Social Change