I'd love to do a serious study of mass comm journal titles, but I'm not sure where the heck I'd publish the thing. But as a quick-and-dirty study, I looked at 1960 titles from Journalism Quarterly and then what's been published so far in 2009 (now it's called Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly).
This was not a careful, systematic study, but if we can argue mass comm has "matured" as a field -- and I think we can -- the academic journal titles certainly seem to reflect that -- at least as far my small sample from one journal are concerned.
- In 1960, I count an almost 3-to-1 ratio in favor of NO colons in titles.
- In 2009, I count an almost 2-to-1 ratio in favor USING colons in titles.
This is clearly a good AEJMC conference paper and possibly, but less likely, journal article. I'm tempted, oh so tempted, to carry through with it. But if someone out there wants to take a stab at it, I claim no ownership. Go for it. Just let me know how it comes out.