Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 12

Search results for: coders

12 Performance Analysis of VoIP Coders for Different Modulations Under Pervasive Environment

Authors: Jasbinder Singh, Harjit Pal Singh, S. A. Khan

Abstract:

The work, in this paper, presents the comparison of encoded speech signals by different VoIP narrow-band and wide-band codecs for different modulation schemes. The simulation results indicate that codec has an impact on the speech quality and also effected by modulation schemes.

Keywords: VoIP, coders, modulations, BER, MOS

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11 A Qualitative Study to Analyze Clinical Coders’ Decision Making Process of Adverse Drug Event Admissions

Authors: Nisa Mohan

Abstract:

Clinical coding is a feasible method for estimating the national prevalence of adverse drug event (ADE) admissions. However, under-coding of ADE admissions is a limitation of this method. Whilst the under-coding will impact the accurate estimation of the actual burden of ADEs, the feasibility of the coded data in estimating the adverse drug event admissions goes much further compared to the other methods. Therefore, it is necessary to know the reasons for the under-coding in order to improve the clinical coding of ADE admissions. The ability to identify the reasons for the under-coding of ADE admissions rests on understanding the decision-making process of coding ADE admissions. Hence, the current study aimed to explore the decision-making process of clinical coders when coding cases of ADE admissions. Clinical coders from different levels of coding job such as trainee, intermediate and advanced level coders were purposefully selected for the interviews. Thirteen clinical coders were recruited from two Auckland region District Health Board hospitals for the interview study. Semi-structured, one-on-one, face-to-face interviews using open-ended questions were conducted with the selected clinical coders. Interviews were about 20 to 30 minutes long and were audio-recorded with the approval of the participants. The interview data were analysed using a general inductive approach. The interviews with the clinical coders revealed that the coders have targets to meet, and they sometimes hesitate to adhere to the coding standards. Coders deviate from the standard coding processes to make a decision. Coders avoid contacting the doctors for clarifying small doubts such as ADEs and the name of the medications because of the delay in getting a reply from the doctors. They prefer to do some research themselves or take help from their seniors and colleagues for making a decision because they can avoid a long wait to get a reply from the doctors. Coders think of ADE as a small thing. Lack of time for searching for information to confirm an ADE admission, inadequate communication with clinicians, along with coders’ belief that an ADE is a small thing may contribute to the under-coding of the ADE admissions. These findings suggest that further work is needed on interventions to improve the clinical coding of ADE admissions. Providing education to coders about the importance of ADEs, educating clinicians about the importance of clear and confirmed medical records entries, availing pharmacists’ services to improve the detection and clear documentation of ADE admissions, and including a mandatory field in the discharge summary about external causes of diseases may be useful for improving the clinical coding of ADE admissions. The findings of the research will help the policymakers to make informed decisions about the improvements. This study urges the coding policymakers, auditors, and trainers to engage with the unconscious cognitive biases and short-cuts of the clinical coders. This country-specific research conducted in New Zealand may also benefit other countries by providing insight into the clinical coding of ADE admissions and will offer guidance about where to focus changes and improvement initiatives.

Keywords: adverse drug events, clinical coders, decision making, hospital admissions

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10 Reliability of Clinical Coding in Accurately Estimating the Actual Prevalence of Adverse Drug Event Admissions

Authors: Nisa Mohan

Abstract:

Adverse drug event (ADE) related hospital admissions are common among older people. The first step in prevention is accurately estimating the prevalence of ADE admissions. Clinical coding is an efficient method to estimate the prevalence of ADE admissions. The objective of the study is to estimate the rate of under-coding of ADE admissions in older people in New Zealand and to explore how clinical coders decide whether or not to code an admission as an ADE. There has not been any research in New Zealand to explore these areas. This study is done using a mixed-methods approach. Two common and serious ADEs in older people, namely bleeding and hypoglycaemia were selected for the study. In study 1, eight hundred medical records of people aged 65 years and above who are admitted to hospital due to bleeding and hypoglycemia during the years 2015 – 2016 were selected for quantitative retrospective medical records review. This selection was made to estimate the proportion of ADE-related bleeding and hypoglycemia admissions that are not coded as ADEs. These files were reviewed and recorded as to whether the admission was caused by an ADE. The hospital discharge data were reviewed to check whether all the ADE admissions identified in the records review were coded as ADEs, and the proportion of under-coding of ADE admissions was estimated. In study 2, thirteen clinical coders were selected to conduct qualitative semi-structured interviews using a general inductive approach. Participants were selected purposively based on their experience in clinical coding. Interview questions were designed in a way to investigate the reasons for the under-coding of ADE admissions. The records review study showed that 35% (Cl 28% - 44%) of the ADE-related bleeding admissions and 22% of the ADE-related hypoglycemia admissions were not coded as ADEs. Although the quality of clinical coding is high across New Zealand, a substantial proportion of ADE admissions were under-coded. This shows that clinical coding might under-estimate the actual prevalence of ADE related hospital admissions in New Zealand. The interviews with the clinical coders added that lack of time for searching for information to confirm an ADE admission, inadequate communication with clinicians, along with coders’ belief that an ADE is a small thing might be the potential reasons for the under-coding of the ADE admissions. This study urges the coding policymakers, auditors, and trainers to engage with the unconscious cognitive biases and short-cuts of the clinical coders. These results highlight that further work is needed on interventions to improve the clinical coding of ADE admissions, such as providing education to coders about the importance of ADEs, education to clinicians about the importance of clear and confirmed medical records entries, availing pharmacist service to improve the detection and clear documentation of ADE admissions and including a mandatory field in the discharge summary about external causes of diseases.

Keywords: adverse drug events, bleeding, clinical coders, clinical coding, hypoglycemia

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9 Support Services in Open and Distance Education: An Integrated Model of Open Universities

Authors: Evrim Genc Kumtepe, Elif Toprak, Aylin Ozturk, Gamze Tuna, Hakan Kilinc, Irem Aydin Menderis

Abstract:

Support services are very significant elements for all educational institutions in general; however, for distance learners, these services are more essential than traditional (face-to-face) counterparts. One of the most important reasons for this is that learners and instructors do not share the same physical environment and that distance learning settings generally require intrapersonal interactions rather than interpersonal ones. Some learners in distance learning programs feel isolated. Furthermore, some fail to feel a sense of belonging to the institution because of lack of self-management skills, lack of motivation levels, and the need of being socialized, so that they are more likely to fail or drop out of an online class. In order to overcome all these problems, support services have emerged as a critical element for an effective and sustainable distance education system. Within the context of distance education support services, it is natural to include technology-based and web-based services and also the related materials. Moreover, institutions in education sector are expected to use information and communication technologies effectively in order to be successful in educational activities and programs. In terms of the sustainability of the system, an institution should provide distance education services through ICT enabled processes to support all stakeholders in the system, particularly distance learners. In this study, it is envisaged to develop a model based on the current support services literature in the field of open and distance learning and the applications of the distance higher education institutions. Specifically, content analysis technique is used to evaluate the existing literature in the distance education support services, the information published on websites, and applications of distance higher education institutions across the world. A total of 60 institutions met the inclusion criteria which are language option (English) and availability of materials in the websites. The six field experts contributed to brainstorming process to develop and extract codes for the coding scheme. During the coding process, these preset and emergent codes are used to conduct analyses. Two coders independently reviewed and coded each assigned website to ensure that all coders are interpreting the data the same way and to establish inter-coder reliability. Once each web page is included in descriptive and relational analysis, a model of support services is developed by examining the generated codes and themes. It is believed that such a model would serve as a quality guide for future institutions, as well as the current ones.

Keywords: support services, open education, distance learning, support model

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8 Challenges & Barriers for Neuro Rehabilitation in Developing Countries

Authors: Muhammad Naveed Babur, Maria Liaqat

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Background & Objective: People with disabilities especially neurological disabilities have many unmet health and rehabilitation needs, face barriers in accessing mainstream health-care services, and consequently have poor health. There are not sufficient epidemiological studies from Pakistan which assess barriers to neurorehabilitation and ways to counter it. Objectives: The objective of the study was to determine the challenges and to evaluate the barriers for neuro-rehabilitation services in developing countries. Methods: This is Exploratory sequential qualitative study based on the Panel discussion forum in International rehabilitation sciences congress and national rehabilitation conference 2017. Panel group discussion has been conducted in February 2017 with a sample size of eight professionals including Rehabilitation medicine Physician, Physical Therapist, Speech Language therapist, Occupational Therapist, Clinical Psychologist and rehabilitation nurse working in multidisciplinary/Interdisciplinary team. A comprehensive audio-videography have been developed, recorded, transcripted and documented. Data was transcribed and thematic analysis along with characteristics was drawn manually. Data verification was done with the help of two separate coders. Results: After extraction of two separate coders following results are emerged. General category themes are disease profile, demographic profile, training and education, research, barriers, governance, global funding, informal care, resources and cultural beliefs and public awareness. Barriers identified at the level are high cost, stigma, lengthy course of recovery. Hospital related barriers are lack of social support and individually tailored goal setting processes. Organizational barriers identified are lack of basic diagnostic facilities, lack of funding and human resources. Recommendations given by panelists were investment in education, capacity building, infrastructure, governance support, strategies to promote communication and realistic goals. Conclusion: It is concluded that neurorehabilitation in developing countries need attention in following categories i.e. disease profile, demographic profile, training and education, research, barriers, governance, global funding, informal care, resources and cultural beliefs and public awareness. This study also revealed barriers at the level of patient, hospital, organization. Recommendations were also given by panelists.

Keywords: disability, neurorehabilitation, telerehabilitation, disability

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7 Image Compression Based on Regression SVM and Biorthogonal Wavelets

Authors: Zikiou Nadia, Lahdir Mourad, Ameur Soltane

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In this paper, we propose an effective method for image compression based on SVM Regression (SVR), with three different kernels, and biorthogonal 2D Discrete Wavelet Transform. SVM regression could learn dependency from training data and compressed using fewer training points (support vectors) to represent the original data and eliminate the redundancy. Biorthogonal wavelet has been used to transform the image and the coefficients acquired are then trained with different kernels SVM (Gaussian, Polynomial, and Linear). Run-length and Arithmetic coders are used to encode the support vectors and its corresponding weights, obtained from the SVM regression. The peak signal noise ratio (PSNR) and their compression ratios of several test images, compressed with our algorithm, with different kernels are presented. Compared with other kernels, Gaussian kernel achieves better image quality. Experimental results show that the compression performance of our method gains much improvement.

Keywords: image compression, 2D discrete wavelet transform (DWT-2D), support vector regression (SVR), SVM Kernels, run-length, arithmetic coding

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6 An Application of Content Analysis, SWOT Analysis, and the TOPSIS Method: A Case Study of the 'Tourism Ambassador' Program in Indonesia

Authors: Gilang Maulana Majid

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If a government program remains scientifically uncontested for a long time, it is likely that its effects will be far from expected as there is no concrete evaluation of the steps being taken. This article identifies how such a theory aptly describes the case of the 'tourism ambassador' program in Indonesia. Being set out as one of the tourism promotional means of many regional governments in Indonesia, this program is heavily criticized for being ineffective despite a large number of budgets being spent on an annual basis. Taking the program as a case study, this article applies content analysis, SWOT analysis, and TOPSIS as data analysis methods, with a total of 56 tourism ambassadors invited to become coders, respondents, and/or interviewees in this research. The study reveals the SWOT of the program, recognizes four strategies that can be taken to optimize the program's effects and prioritizes a strategy based on the preferences of the involved tourism ambassadors using TOPSIS. It is found that incorporation of technology such as the creation of an online platform is, among others, the most expected approach to be taken to solve the problems concerning tourism ambassador program. However, based on the costs and benefits of each strategy presented in the current study, each alternative appears to have trade-offs between one and another.

Keywords: Indonesia, optimization strategies, 'Tourism Ambassador' program, SWOT-TOPSIS

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5 A Comprehensive Methodology for Voice Segmentation of Large Sets of Speech Files Recorded in Naturalistic Environments

Authors: Ana Londral, Burcu Demiray, Marcus Cheetham

Abstract:

Speech recording is a methodology used in many different studies related to cognitive and behaviour research. Modern advances in digital equipment brought the possibility of continuously recording hours of speech in naturalistic environments and building rich sets of sound files. Speech analysis can then extract from these files multiple features for different scopes of research in Language and Communication. However, tools for analysing a large set of sound files and automatically extract relevant features from these files are often inaccessible to researchers that are not familiar with programming languages. Manual analysis is a common alternative, with a high time and efficiency cost. In the analysis of long sound files, the first step is the voice segmentation, i.e. to detect and label segments containing speech. We present a comprehensive methodology aiming to support researchers on voice segmentation, as the first step for data analysis of a big set of sound files. Praat, an open source software, is suggested as a tool to run a voice detection algorithm, label segments and files and extract other quantitative features on a structure of folders containing a large number of sound files. We present the validation of our methodology with a set of 5000 sound files that were collected in the daily life of a group of voluntary participants with age over 65. A smartphone device was used to collect sound using the Electronically Activated Recorder (EAR): an app programmed to record 30-second sound samples that were randomly distributed throughout the day. Results demonstrated that automatic segmentation and labelling of files containing speech segments was 74% faster when compared to a manual analysis performed with two independent coders. Furthermore, the methodology presented allows manual adjustments of voiced segments with visualisation of the sound signal and the automatic extraction of quantitative information on speech. In conclusion, we propose a comprehensive methodology for voice segmentation, to be used by researchers that have to work with large sets of sound files and are not familiar with programming tools.

Keywords: automatic speech analysis, behavior analysis, naturalistic environments, voice segmentation

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4 The KAPSARC Energy Policy Database: Introducing a Quantified Library of China's Energy Policies

Authors: Philipp Galkin

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Government policy is a critical factor in the understanding of energy markets. Regardless, it is rarely approached systematically from a research perspective. Gaining a precise understanding of what policies exist, their intended outcomes, geographical extent, duration, evolution, etc. would enable the research community to answer a variety of questions that, for now, are either oversimplified or ignored. Policy, on its surface, also seems a rather unstructured and qualitative undertaking. There may be quantitative components, but incorporating the concept of policy analysis into quantitative analysis remains a challenge. The KAPSARC Energy Policy Database (KEPD) is intended to address these two energy policy research limitations. Our approach is to represent policies within a quantitative library of the specific policy measures contained within a set of legal documents. Each of these measures is recorded into the database as a single entry characterized by a set of qualitative and quantitative attributes. Initially, we have focused on the major laws at the national level that regulate coal in China. However, KAPSARC is engaged in various efforts to apply this methodology to other energy policy domains. To ensure scalability and sustainability of our project, we are exploring semantic processing using automated computer algorithms. Automated coding can provide a more convenient input data for human coders and serve as a quality control option. Our initial findings suggest that the methodology utilized in KEPD could be applied to any set of energy policies. It also provides a convenient tool to facilitate understanding in the energy policy realm enabling the researcher to quickly identify, summarize, and digest policy documents and specific policy measures. The KEPD captures a wide range of information about each individual policy contained within a single policy document. This enables a variety of analyses, such as structural comparison of policy documents, tracing policy evolution, stakeholder analysis, and exploring interdependencies of policies and their attributes with exogenous datasets using statistical tools. The usability and broad range of research implications suggest a need for the continued expansion of the KEPD to encompass a larger scope of policy documents across geographies and energy sectors.

Keywords: China, energy policy, policy analysis, policy database

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3 Experiences of Pediatric Cancer Patients and Their Families: A Focus Group Interview

Authors: Bu Kyung Park

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Background: The survival rate of pediatric cancer patients has been increased. Thus, the needs of long-term management and follow-up education after discharge continue to grow. Purpose: The purpose of this study was to explore the experiences of pediatric cancer patients and their families from first diagnosis to returning their social life. The ultimate goal of this study was to assess which information and intervention did pediatric cancer patients and their families required and needed, so that this could provide fundamental information for developing educational content of web-based intervention program for pediatric cancer patients. Research Approach: This study was based on a descriptive qualitative research design using semi-structured focus group interview. Participants: Twelve pediatric cancer patients and 12 family members participated in a total six focus group interview sessions. Methods: All interviews were audiotaped after obtaining participants’ approval. The recordings were transcribed. Qualitative Content analysis using the inductive coding approach was performed on the transcriptions by three coders. Findings: Eighteen categories emerged from the six main themes: 1) Information needs, 2) Support system, 3) Barriers to treatment, 4) Facilitators to treatment, 5) Return to social life, 6) Healthcare system issues. Each theme had both pediatric cancer patients’ codes and their family members’ codes. Patients and family members had high information needs through the whole process of treatment, not only the first diagnosis but also after completion of treatment. Hospitals provided basic information on chemo therapy, medication, and various examinations. However, they were more likely to rely on information from other patients and families by word of mouth. Participants’ information needs were different according to their treatment stage (e.g., first admitted patients versus cancer survivors returning to their social life). Even newly diagnosed patients worried about social adjustment after completion of all treatment, such as return to school and diet and physical activity at home. Most family members had unpleasant experiences while they were admitted in hospitals and concerned about healthcare system issues, such as medical error and patient safety. Conclusions: In conclusion, pediatric cancer patients and their family members wanted information source which can provide tailored information based on their needs. Different information needs with patients and their family members based on their diagnosis, progress, stage of treatment were identified. Findings from this study will be used to develop a patient-centered online health intervention program for pediatric cancer patients. Pediatric cancer patients and their family members had variety fields of education needs and soak the information from various sources. Web-based health intervention program for them is required to satisfy their inquiries to provide reliable information.

Keywords: focus group interview, family caregivers, pediatric cancer patients, qualitative content analysis

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2 Scoping Review of the Potential to Embed Mental Health Impact in Global Challenges Research

Authors: Netalie Shloim, Brian Brown, Siobhan Hugh-Jones, Jane Plastow, Diana Setiyawati, Anna Madill

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In June 2021, the World Health Organization launched its guidance and technical packages on community mental health services, stressing a human rights-based approach to care. This initiative stems from an increasing acknowledgment of the role mental health plays in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. Nevertheless, mental health remains a relatively neglected research area and the estimates for untreated mental disorders in low-and-middle-income countries (LMICs) are as high as 78% for adults. Moreover, the development sector and research programs too often side-line mental health as a privilege in the face of often immediate threats to life and livelihood. As a way of addressing this problem, this study aimed to examine past or ongoing GCRF projects to see if there were opportunities where mental health impact could have been achieved without compromising a study's main aim and without overburdening a project. Projects funded by the UKRI Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) were analyzed. This program was initiated in 2015 to support cutting-edge research that addresses the challenges faced by developing countries. By the end of May 2020, a total of 15,279 projects were funded of which only 3% had an explicit mental health focus. A sample of 36 non-mental-health-focused projects was then sampled for diversity across research council, challenge portfolio and world region. Each of these 36 projects was coded by two coders for opportunities to embed mental health impact. To facilitate coding, the literature was inspected for dimensions relevant to LMIC settings. Three main psychological and three main social dimensions were identified: promote a positive sense of self; promote positive emotions, safe expression and regulation of challenging emotions, coping strategies, and help-seeking; facilitate skills development; and facilitate community-building; preserve sociocultural identity; support community mobilization. Coding agreement was strong on missed opportunities for mental health impact on the three social dimensions: support community mobilization (92%), facilitate community building (83%), preserve socio-cultural identity (70%). Coding agreement was reasonably strong on missed opportunities for mental health impact on the three psychological dimensions: promote positive emotions (67%), facilitate skills development (61%), positive sense of self (58%). In order of frequency, the agreed perceived opportunities from the highest to lowest are: support community mobilization, facilitate community building, facilitate skills development, promote a positive sense of self, promote positive emotions, preserve sociocultural identity. All projects were considered to have an opportunity to support community mobilization and to facilitate skills development by at least one coder. Findings provided support that there were opportunities to embed mental health impact in research across the range of development sectors and identifies what kind of missed opportunities are most frequent. Hence, mainstreaming mental health has huge potential to tackle the lack of priority and funding it has attracted traditionally. The next steps are to understand the barriers to mainstreaming mental health and to work together to overcome them.

Keywords: GCRF, mental health, psychosocial wellbeing, LMIC

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1 Content Analysis of Gucci’s ‘Blackface’ Sweater Controversy across Multiple Media Platforms

Authors: John Mark King

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Beginning on Feb. 7, 2019, the luxury brand, Gucci, was met with a firestorm on social media over fashion runway images of its black balaclava sweater, which covered the bottom half of the face and featured large, shiny bright red lips surrounding the mouth cutout. Many observers on social media and in the news media noted the garment resembled racist “blackface.” This study aimed to measure how items were framed across multiple media platforms. The unit of analysis was any headline or lead paragraph published using the search terms “Gucci” and “sweater” or “jumper” or “balaclava” during the one-year timeframe of Feb. 7, 2019, to Feb. 6, 2020. Limitations included headlines and lead paragraphs published in English and indexed in the Lexis/Nexis database. Independent variables were the nation in which the item was published and the platform (newspapers, blogs, web-based publications, newswires, magazines, or broadcast news). Dependent variables were tone toward Gucci (negative, neutral or positive) and frame (blackface/racism/racist, boycott/celebrity boycott, sweater/balaclava/jumper/fashion, apology/pulling the product/diversity initiatives by Gucci or frames unrelated to the controversy but still involving Gucci sweaters) and word count. Two coders achieved 100% agreement on all variables except tone (94.2%) and frame (96.3%). The search yielded 276 items published from 155 sources in 18 nations. The tone toward Gucci during this period was negative (69.9%). Items that were neutral (16.3%) or positive (13.8%) toward the brand were overwhelmingly related to items about other Gucci sweaters worn by celebrities or fashion reviews of other Gucci sweaters. The most frequent frame was apology/pulling the product/diversity initiatives by Gucci (35.5%). The tone was most frequently negative across all continents, including the Middle East (83.3% negative), Asia (81.8%), North America (76.6%), Australia/New Zealand (66.7%), and Europe (59.8%). Newspapers/magazines/newswires/broadcast news transcripts (72.4%) were more negative than blogs/web-based publications (63.6%). The most frequent frames used by newspapers/magazines/newswires/broadcast news transcripts were apology/pulling the product/diversity initiatives by Gucci (38.7%) and blackface/racism/racist (26.1%). Blogs/web-based publications most frequently used frames unrelated to the controversial garment, but about other Gucci sweaters (42.9%) and apology/pulling the product/diversity initiatives by Gucci (27.3%). Sources in Western nations (34.7%) and Eastern nations (47.1%) most frequently used the frame of apology/pulling the product/diversity initiatives by Gucci. Mean word count was higher for negative items (583.58) than positive items (404.76). Items framed as blackface/racism/racist or boycott/celebrity boycott had higher mean word count (668.97) than items framed as sweater/balaclava/jumper/fashion or apology/pulling the product/diversity initiatives by Gucci (498.22). The author concluded that during the year-long period, Gucci’s image was likely damaged by the release of the garment at the center of the controversy due to near-universally negative items published, but Gucci’s apology/pulling the product off the market/diversity initiatives by Gucci and items about other Gucci sweaters worn by celebrities or fashion reviews of other Gucci sweaters were the most common frames across multiple media platforms, which may have mitigated the damage to the brand.

Keywords: Blackface, branding, Gucci, media framing

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